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Navigating the New Era of Digital Standardization with Cognistx and SAE International

April 15, 2024
Cognistx Staff

SAE International, a standards development and professional association with over128000 engineers and technical experts, noticed a significant number of customers undergoing digital transformation.

At the heart of this transformation lies the concept of digital standardization.Digital standards are a dynamic blueprint of collaboration and efficiency in the industry. These standards ensure a seamless blend of the old and the new,the proven and the innovative.

SAE International partnered with Cognistx to tackle the challenges of digital transformation in the industry through AI. This groundbreaking initiative represents a critical step in the evolution of standardization and underscores the increasing significance of integrating AI to advance engineering fields.

"We contacted Cognistx to assist us in leveraging AI to begin the process of digitizing our extensive library of standards,” said Leslie McKay of SAE. “With thousands of standards to convert into digital format, the task of rewriting them all manually is simply unfeasible.Therefore, we've initiated collaboration with Cognistx to utilize natural language processing for interpreting our standards effectively.”

The Catalyst for Change: Digital Standards Unleashed

Digital standards are more than repositories of information; they have evolved into the coveted lighthouses that guide engineers and designers through the tempests of complexity. They are the conduits that channel the collective wisdom of the industry's best minds into every product conceived, McKay said.

"Before building a product, consider creating a digital representation to ensure it meets required standards,” she said. “These standards are integral to the product-development process."

Applying AI Responses in Engineering Realms

Cognistx'sAI integrations elevated SAE’s digital standards beyond basic compliance tools.They have transformed into remarkable databases, answering queries with the expertise of a seasoned professional. The implications reach further than just convenience; they mark the beginning of a new era characterized by heightened productivity and accuracy.

One notable impact of AI technology is the acceleration of the design process. Engineers and designers, previously burdened by sifting through extensive standards, now have a tool that not only quickens searches but also actively contributes to the idea generation phase.

Imagine you're an aerospace engineer developing a product that requires various components, such as nuts and bolts.To ensure quality and efficiency, using standardized parts and materials approved for aerospace applications is crucial.

Searching for specific parts in PDF files, such as bolts with precise dimensions and material requirements, can be daunting. SAE and Cognistx collaborated on the creation of the organization’s digital standard library, OnQue. The platform houses digitalized standards, allowing users to search criteria like length, thread count, tensile strength and material type.

The interface enables you to discover standard parts or materials that align with your design needs. Once you've found what you're looking for, you can easily download the data and integrate it into your project seamlessly.

“Standards should be made more digitally friendly for easier conversion. Even basic sentence structure, including complete sentences, is crucial to conversion. There is a wealth of information on organizing tables and the distinction between how a machine interprets a table and how it should actually be interpreted,” said Cognistx CEO Sanjay Chopra.


One of the main hurdles to digitizing standards has been the discrepancy between perceived and actual standards provided by people, leading to complications when converting information into a usable format for search and comparison.

Some content was initially intended for consumption in a linear fashion. SAE and Cognistx encountered difficulties in transforming that content into a more comprehensive, multidimensional relational data model. Recognizing the industry's need for consistency, the idea of a standardized approach emerged. This concept aimed to address the lack of uniformity in content generation and consumption, paving the way for improved industry practices and adaptability.

Industry Perceptions of Digital Standardization

While people can comprehend standards,machines may struggle with such interpretation. To address this, SAE and Cognistx developed an educational series to guide standard writers on enhancing clarity and coherence.

Inconsistency can lead to increased costs for those seeking to optimize the content. It would demand more labor and manual effort for reviewing and tracking the content, which is a challenge Cognistx aims to address and mitigate.

"You have to keep things simple, and you have to keep things consistent for a machine to interpret it over and over because you have to teach the machine,” Chopra said.

The process of digitizing standards has proven invaluable for many companies in assessing their standards and evaluating their readiness to embark on the digital-conversion journey.

"I recently had a conversation with an individual from a significant aerospace organization, and they mentioned having thousands of internal standards,” said McKay. “Currently, they are feeling overwhelmed with the task of digitizing these standards."

Ensuring consistency in variables across-standards through effective management of mapping tables is crucial. It's essential to conduct verification and validation processes early in the product-development

life cycle. Identifying issues at the simulation stage is far more cost-effective than waiting until physical prototypes or products are in place,she said.

Pioneering a Blueprint for the Future

The partnership between Cognistx and SAE International marks a significant juncture where tradition intersects with technology, and proficiency merges with innovation. This strategic partnership establishes a groundbreaking benchmark for collaborations centered around AI.

The partnership symbolizes the evolving landscape of digital engineering. Rooted in quality and service, their commitment reflects the industry's core values now ingrained in the digital era.

"SAE’s bold venture into AI-driven digital standards is not just a forward-thinking strategy; it’s a blueprint for the future," says Chopra. "This partnership exemplifies the potential of AI and human creativity, showcasing the essence of exceptional engineering standards."

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