Give that headline ☝️ to Amazon's text-to-speech converter, and you're in for a surprise. The language processor sees right through your weak attempt at censorship and says that bad boy aloud. We hilariously discovered this yesterday with a bot we're testing that turns text from the Quartz app into speech. Our bot scanned this (awesome) lead, … Continue reading What the actual f***?
Voice-based computing may be the next buzzword you hate to love. Betaworks Voice Camp, an accelerator program for voice-centered products, introduced eight young companies at last week’s demo day. I entered the event with limited context on the subject and walked out convinced that sooner or later, I’ll be managing many details in my life … Continue reading Notes From Betaworks Voice Summit
On the Echo, nobody knows you're a dog. Yesterday afternoon, I enabled Amazon's "drop-in" feature, allowing my mom to connect to the Echo that sits on our kitchen counter. Unlike a call that I'd have to answer, "drop in" automatically connects the two devices. She hears what's going on in my kitchen; we hear her … Continue reading My dog uses Amazon’s new “drop-in” feature when I’m not home
Low-stakes experiments are so important to the start of a project. And by low, I mean tests you can reject, delete, or literally throw away without tears or hurt feelings. For apps, websites, or any visual medium, one option has always ruled—paper. Draw it out and have people pretend to swipe, stab at buttons, or … Continue reading (Relatively) Rapid Prototyping for Voice
It's become sport in some circles to juxtapose old Donald Trump tweets with his latest statements or positions — and calling out tweets that haven't aged well. Quartz's Annalisa Merelli wondered if we could build bot to do something similar. So we gave it a shot. Detecting irony and contradiction is probably best left to human … Continue reading @TrumpOfYore: Using AI and math to find similar tweets from the president’s past
In the spirit of confessionals, I'll offer this one: In any given week, I probably spend more time chatting with bots than I do humans. (At least on Facebook Messenger.) As we consider where to take our bots, we here in the Bot Studio are working hard to better understand the bounds and opportunities of the major platforms, as … Continue reading I talked to lots of bots. Here’s what made some better than others.
We're making bots at Quartz and keeping a diary as we go. Right here. We'll be spilling our joys and disappointments, along with code and insights. We hope to provide solid recommendations and code you can actually use, but along the way we'll report on half-baked experiments, silly ideas and abject failures, too. We hope you'll learn from our learning … Continue reading Opening our bot book