Would you consider leaving your decisions to someone else?. It seems that is where we are heading with the development of personal assistance software that is based on programs that learn from you to make better decisions of what you might want than anyone else. although most of the technology development is still new, the trend and speed of growth and development might take us to a near future where everyone would have a personal assistant and soon, the communication will be among the assistants rather than persons.
For us to understand where we are heading lets begin understanding some of the most well know applications we are already using. Waze isn't just a GPS map. Its millions of users updating the system every moment about traffic jams, car accidents and police cars. Therefore, Waze knows when to divert you away from heavy traffic. It might be that Waze tells you to turn left and you consider that right is better. However, humans are learning that going against
Waze instructions and algorithm usually end up on more time and a regret. Today Waze is working as an Oracle. because we still make the decisions. Once the algorithm or apps gains our trust it becomes an agent. Moreover, imagine what would happened when self driven cars are everywhere and you get into the car and tell the car or Waze "take the fastest route home", who will be making the decisions.
Another interesting company exploring this technology is Amazon through Alexa. The Echo device is a smart cookie. If I say "Alexa play some Pink Floyd music" it will start playing some tunes in the build in speaker or even connect and sync to other speakers you might have. Ask her anything from weather or who are nominees to the Oscars today. Alexa can also work with other technologies in your home and beyond. If you have set up any Philips Hue smart light
bulbs, for instance, it can control these. Ask Alexa to turn on the living room lights, and Alexa will send a command to the Echo that sends a command to these light bulbs to turn on or even program time or create scenes so when you come home automatically turns the light the way you like. It can also work with online services. Link Alexa to Uber, for instance, and you can request an Uber by simply asking Alexa. Link it to Domino's, and you can order a pizza with your voice.The small computer in the Echo isn't completely dumb. It has enough built-in smarts to do a number of tasks, like playing back music and making lights blink.
Microsoft is developing Cortana. An AI personal assistant that the company hope to install in the main software in future versions of windows. When users have the software, they will be encourage to allow Cortana to take all your files, mails and applications, so it will get to know them and thereby offer advice on a myriad of matters. Cortana could remain and suggest you to buy something for your wife birthday, reserve a table at a restaurant and prompt you to take your medicine an hour before your meal, it will let you know when to stop playing, watching tv or reading so you don't get late to a place. It will measure and make you aware of your blood
pressure, your dopamine level based on past statistics and that you make serious decision mistakes when you are at those levels to even tell you not to agree on anything if you are doing a business decision. Today Cortana is call an Oracle, but eventually will evolve to an Agent and here is where they will be speaking on behalf of their "master" or "user". It can start innocently enough arranging meetings between two Cortana's agents, but can easily evolve to something where you might not receive a CV anymore and the Cortana employee and the Cortana hiring manager could get together and analyze your profile. What about a person who wants to meet someone and their Cortana's could evaluate whether its a good match, not even being know by the persons.
These are two of 22 personal assistance being available. Today Google assistance, Google Now, Amazon Alexa, Apple Siri, Samsung Viv, Microsoft Cortana are some of the names from the top companies in technology. If you have doubt about the investment and development of this technology think twice because there is a lot of money being invested to win the decision making process of humans. However, there are many other companies involve in the same development. AI softwares call Nina, Jibo, SILVIA, Mycroft, Cubic, Lucida, Dragon Go, Bixby, Aido,to mention some others. If all these companies and specially behind the companies all the minds of humans developing the best personal assistance software are behind how long will it take them to evolve our decision process faster when the behavior is already changing.
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