Time for Technology’s EQ to Equal its IQ


The 2018 Tech Trends report released at SXSW 2018 predicts that by 2021 more than half of all computing in developed nations will be performed with voice.

It’s basically time for technology’s EQ to equal its IQ. I think we have a lot of brute IQ, a lot of functional stuff that can be done, but this new paradigm is inherently social, and when you think of language, it’s like the marker of our species, it’s like we’re connecting with these things in a way where it can’t just be that functional cognitive layer. We’ve got to design for the emotional layer.

— Danielle Krettek, Google Empathy Lab

It’s like we’re going from the sharp edge to the rounded corner, going from blunt colours to gradients — like those are kind of the milky spaces I think will be really fascinating for us.

— Danielle Krettek, Google Empathy Lab

Krettek shared her remarks Saturday at YouTube HQ at SXSW in Austin, Texas during a panel titled “The Power of Story Through the Lens of AI.”

Empathy from a machine isn’t actually possible, Krettek said, but her hope is assistants can someday achieve a kind of “empathic leap” where an assistant brings intelligence and a personality created by the Google Assistant team in a way that achieves a connection that feels more like a copilot at your side. It may not be human but it’s closer to you and more understanding than a sterile robot.

The SXSW panel took place days after Li published a New York Times op-ed about making AI that’s good for people, not just machines.

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