“Hello, Cortana. This Is Big Data Calling.”

Brad Shimmin
Brad Shimmin

Summary Bullets:

  • Artificial avatars combine natural language processing, contextual awareness, predictive analytics, and machine learning not only to answer requests, but also to anticipate them.
  • What if these avatars were instructed to include not just your inbox, but everyone’s inbox, your corporate ERP database, even your nifty little Hadoop cluster?

As you may have heard, Microsoft is playing around with the notion of intelligent automation. Like Google and Apple, the company has its own personal, mobile assistant named Cortana, which can help you find a nice restaurant, schedule a meeting, or remind you to call your mom more often… seriously. These artificial avatars combine natural language processing, contextual awareness, predictive analytics, and machine learning to sift through your inbox, search history, and calendar, not only to respond to your requests, but actually to anticipate them. Of course, they’re still fraught with negative perceptions and unreasonable expectations, which currently limits their effective use to basic responsive tasks such as looking at your calendar and seeing that you need to call your mom today because it’s her birthday. Continue reading ““Hello, Cortana. This Is Big Data Calling.””