LG TVs to get Google Assistant and Voice Controls

Gwen Vasquez
May 12, 2018

A long-standing goal of human-computer interaction has been to enable people to have a natural conversation with computers, as they would with each other. Google consciously decided against giving the assistant a real human background. However, details about the disclosure have not yet been shared, as Google simply says it is designing Duplex with disclosure built in but the consequences of this technology falling into the wrong hands are tremendous. The feature allows the digital assistant to make calls on your behalf using a voice that sounds nearly too human. Unlike the robotic voices we've grown used to over the years-Siri, Cortana, and even Google's Assistant-the Duplex AI was surprisingly convincing, using words like "um" and expertly changing the inflection of its voice.

Google introduced their newest jaw-dropping feat at the I/O conference this week: a hyper-realistic sounding chatbot that will be able to make phone calls for you. TechCrunch pointed into "a failing of creative and ethical AI layout".

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"Google Duplex is the most incredible, terrifying thing out of #IO18 so far", tweeted Chris Messina, a product designer whose resume includes Google and bringing the idea of the hashtag to Twitter.

"I think AI Duplex is a cool technology", UNSW Canberra artificial intelligence expert and SEIT Professor Hussein Abbass says. In the course of the conversation the system is told it wouldn't need a reservation for that many people on that particular day. The function is developed with a built-in mechanism demaskirovanie, so that the user can always correctly identify the system. AI has the potential to make organisations more effective and efficient, but the technology raises serious issues of ethics, governance, privacy and law. If the human on the other end of the line asked questions about something other than hair or restaurants, Duplex wouldn't have a human answer and may well end the call - making it clear it is software. Even though the calls will sound very natural, the Assistant will be clear about the intent of the call so businesses understand the context. It's important to us that users and businesses have a good experience with this service, and transparency is a key part of that. Esperanza, however, wondered if the shop would be able to block the calls, and said it "begs the question about whether the conversation is recorded and if the recipient of these automated calls could be aware that they're being recorded". When the demonstration was run, several of those present praised Google on the technology but stated they were concerned that the bot's vocals were indistinguishably from those of a human.

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