From watching pulp cook for hours on end and tracking parasitic bugs on satellite photos to handling lengthy legal documents, Scandinavian forest companies are creating new jobs that they would never ask a human to do. Swedish packaging maker BillerudKorsnäs has been an early adopter of artificial intelligence (AI) by using the technology to analyse thousands of diagrams to determine just how long it needs to cook its wood chips before they turn into pulp. Though that could be done manually, it would be difficult to find any human who'd be willing to spend all day just looking at such charts. "A machine can review large data quantities and find patterns in ways we humans just find too boring," Olle Steffner, director of intellectual property management, said. "Tasks such as monitoring processes or analysing diagrams will hardly be missed by anybody. Our staff is needed for other things." The rewards from using AI for such mundane tasks could be plentiful. The biggest advantages incl...

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