Google's socially awkward geeks make socially awkward AI bot that calls people for you | 5/8/2018 | Staff
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Google IO Google today opened its annual I/O developer bash with details of how it’s going to lob machine-learning software at everything you do online and offline, and it truly means everything.

CEO Sundar Pichai took to the stage in Silicon Valley to explain how artificial intelligence will make life easier, safer, and more fun for everyone, provided they stay addicted to his company’s products. Not only will these AI systems simplify our lives, but they’ll also train us to use technology better.

Technology - Force - Impact - Crowd - Questions

“Technology can be a positive force but we can’t be wide eyed about its impact,” he told the crowd. “There are serious questions being raised and the path ahead needs to be calculated carefully. Our core mission is to make information more available and beneficial to society.”

To showcase this, he showed off some the augmentations that are coming to Google Assistant in the next few months, not least in the voice it uses. By the end of the year, when you chat with Google’s digital personal assistant, it will use one of six voices, including that of the singer John Legend, that you can select. Pichai said the use of AI meant the voice actors spent a lot less time in the studio: the ad giant's code was able to learn enough from their utterances to impersonate the speakers with a wide vocabulary. Perhaps one day, it will impersonate you.

Google - Feature - Assistant - Duplex - Language

Google will soon add a feature to the assistant called Duplex. This takes natural language processing capabilities to the next level, and lets the assistant talk to humans on your behalf without revealing itself to be a bot. The software pretends to be you, or act for you, over the phone to automatically order food, arrange appointments, and so on. Rather than pick up the phone, dial someone, and go...
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