Friday, January 23, 2015

Ghost in the machine

"Phones turn into mind readers."
"This technology is going to be everywhere."

To think on behalf of a smart device's owner, to guide, to suggest, to recommend, to predict, has been the holy grail for marketers such as Procter & Gamble and Unilever for over a century.  The World in 2015 by the Economist declares that this is the year when it all will hit mainstream. And as all marketers know, when a human mind does not have an analogy for a situation, providing a suggestion to ground the mind, and then recommending based on rating is an ideal way to make the consumer an advocate of the recommended product or service.

According to the article:

"… tension between usefulness and creepiness will intensify in 2015 as anticipatory-computing systems extend their reach in three ways."

"First, they will start drawing on more sources of data, beyond the current analysis of browsing history, e-mail, calendar and location."

"… the second area of expansion, as anticipatory computing spreads, like other consumer technologies before it, into the workplace."

"Third, anticipatory computing will move beyond the smartphone to other devices."

Where will be discovery, ability to be lost and learn?  Will this in the end take away the human ability to anticipate and predict, develop deeper experience based neural net?  Only the future will tell.  For now, the inevitability of anticipatory computing is here.

The complete article here concludes:

"Companies will let users decide what to share “and try their best not to cross the digital creepiness line”, says Mr Yamnitsky (Forrester, a consultancy). You might, for example, wish to exclude access to your browsing history or your children’s personal details. “But the issue is you risk being a second-class citizen if you don’t have the tools other people have,” says Mr Tuttle (chief executive of Expect Labs, a startup)."

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