“Now Google can decrease the routine tasks associated with intelligence”
Vishal Sharma, former vice president of Google, was responsible for products such as Google Now his personal assistant, able to predict the actions of its users
MONDAY, 11 NOVEMBER 2013POR MASTER MARTA E-mail Print
You get in the car and suddenly, your phone tells you you to take an alternative route to get to work. Which normally use is congested, and your device without you know you’ve asked. At night, alerts you to the premiere of the new movie that filmmaker who both like. If your smartphone is capable of such feats, it is because you have installed Google Now, the personal assistant to the company. He who for seven years was his vice president, Vishal Sharma, participated in the meeting technological Pioneers Festival, held in Vienna (Austria), where he exhibited the greatest bastion of product: its predictive ability.
The former vice president of Google, Vishal Sharma, during his speech at the meeting Pioneers Festival held in Vienna (Austria)
How the predictive ability of Google Now works?
If you can make predictions about what a person want to do or what to do before you have taken any action to do so, and even before it has been realized that wants to do it, we must. If you know a person will buy movie tickets on Saturday, because it usually always do that day, and Google has collected this information, Google Now can anticipate such action.
Could also make predictions based on taste?
Yes, if you have some kind of friends or a series of behavioral preferences are set. They are not universally true, but they can help predict. None of this is really new. If you come from a very specific place, perhaps more likely that you like movies in Russian, for example.
Does Google saves all this private information?
The current reality is that when you do anything you generate information. When doing online. Yes, but all facets of life are going into the online, like shopping. Das your online account number that you wish to sell some movie tickets. You are willing to do that, to give your number to buy things. Information is collected from various causes, but there should always be a benefit to it. If no benefit is not collected.
During his talk, he mentioned that people should define how much of your information you want public and which private, where is the balance for you?
I think, personally, that is a mixture. I want a lot of my information is gathered. If I’m about to catch a flight, I want Google to know if the flight is delayed because Google Now notify me. I want to know where I work to tell me how long in coming.
What part do not want to know?
What I’m wearing today, for example. Why? Because what is the benefit for me. Whenever there is a derivative benefit me interested and confident people will leave their data. What happens is that these balances are very complicated and it is very easy to say things like that collecting information is bad. But then you go to Amazon, which makes you personalized recommendations, and nobody bothers you. If you want to go undercover for the web, Google will not have any, but you will miss many useful things.
It has been remarked that in the information age, the memory of society worse because you do not need to remember so many things that can consult online immediately. Thanks to Google Now, you would not be aware of your daily tasks, this phenomenon could condition the human evolution?
You could also say, then, to have lift is bad, because it no longer climb the stairs. For example, being stuck in traffic is not useful, there are many things you could be doing much more valuable with that time, and Google Now helps you to have that time. Now Google can decrease intelligence related to be aware of such things. But people are smart enough, because of what the system is stupid stuff so you do not waste time on these deals. The world is full of interesting things they spend.
For you it is a good evolutionary path?
Yes, for me and for everyone.
In some fictional products, as in the series The Big Bang Theory, were reflected stories of characters who just maintaining a relationship with Siri, Apple’s personal assistant, do you think something could happen in real life?
(Laughs). Well, in the movie Cast Away, starring Tom Hanks, he develops a relationship with a soccer ball is lost and he lives like a friend died. So it’s hard to say whether this is good or bad.
But what could happen?
Well, people develop feelings for many things, such as fitness area equipment, or cars. So yes, it could happen. But on the other hand, the differences between a real human and Siri are so many that can not be easily confused.
What would the perfect personal assistant?
Collect all your context and would have enough to act before you need it. In your life do many unproductive things, like you brush your teeth. If you had a machine to do it for you, I would save those five minutes of your life to do other things of value. This is very predictive, because there are parts of life that are like that. Those that are not, are those where you’re being creative, you create in your life and in your work, and these parts are new and unpredictable. I would say the perfect personal assistant would act on all your routine actions.
Why save you time?
Yes, because then you have more time value. The more time you spend in the routine, the less time you have value. You can read more books and do more sport.
Now Google can, for example, tell the calories in a food that you are eating, can induce this behavior in users?
Well, there are risks in this, but also benefits. Each time you read a book or hear someone on television there are also risks that influence you.
But could someone take over this ability to lead a society towards a particular way of life?
Again be the same with television and books. Both can be used as propaganda or education. In any case, personal assistants are being born now. To be able to abuse something, you first need to function well.
Do you think Google Now is the personal assistant that best predicts your requirements?
In my personal opinion, outside of Google, yes, I think so.