“The Chronicles” January 2019
Simulated Intelligence and Human Productivity
Sitting still on the highway at 5:35 am, in the midst of a Toronto traffic jam, unbelievable, but that’s life during these times. While idling away gas money I started to consider the simpler things in life.
It occurred to me how relatively simple it is to drive a car: anyone can do it and yet it is a complex machine with many moving parts, tight tolerances, many features and functions, yet easy to operate. Simple Complexity.
Recently, Google demonstrated an amazing prototype they call Google Duplex at the 2018 Google I/O conference in California. Duplex is a realistic conversational natural language processing AI assistant. Check it out at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D5VN56jQMWM.
Essentially, Duplex takes a predictable process like making a reservation and completes it at your request, unaided. Wow.
As I sat in my now stationary vehicle, in this traffic jam it occurred to me that taking predictable tasks and using a virtual assistant in this way returns valuable time to us humans so that we can perform more complex tasks.
Being in the business of providing solutions to institutions that collect non-tangible content to prove that some event has occurred – like vaccine activation or certifying surgical competency – this naturally struck a chord with me.
State-of-the-art processing systems deliver hundreds of features and functions to ensure the validity of the collected content. That’s just a fancy way of saying “make sure it is true under scrutiny”.
People have spent their entire careers making certain that the content they collect is accurate, secure, protected and available. They stress about every little detail. A co-worker once told me that his mother (who is one of these professionals) stresses mostly about making 100% sure that the recording device is guaranteed to be recording.
She does not trust volume bars, spinning icons or other digital widgets and fears that somehow it is not recording, that’s the nightmare. She understands that certain people’s futures literally depend on it.
It is the complexity of these solutions that gets in the way and creates stress. Anyone who has ever performed a live demo gets it.
So how do we take a complex system and simplify it?
As humans we do it all the time naturally and without a second thought. We perform tasks, communicate complex ideas and analyse all while driving a complex machine like a car. And that’s the secret: make the solution interact with people in natural ways.
We are seeing this trend in many aspects of our lives: no keyboards, no passwords, no retracing setup steps to make sure it works the way we think it should. We speak to the technology, most times it does what we expect, and tells us the how it is progressing and what is happening.
So, lets apply that model to other tasks that people spend their careers getting absolutely right like scientists, researchers, surgeons, nurses, QA professionals, and doctors. Let’s lose the computer in your face for the invisible AI Virtual Assistant that will take on complex tasks and perform functions based on your authorization.
My car responds to my voice to read emails or map my direction to a destination, and now it even takes on part of the driving tasks in stop-and-go traffic. Great. Now we are going to take the same approach with a process driver like Google Duplex in a smart production room equipped to capture evidence and treat it with the necessary importance required.
Take this a step further and have it conduct research and analyses on the subject while a review is occurring. And, to address my emotional state while it’s all happening, give me the confidence that it’s working by showing me what “you” are capturing.
Stress relief is what this is, and we can accomplish this now. Watch this space as I take you further into the future of evidence-based digital content that is happening now.