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Are Digital Assistants The Future Of Business?

By February 27, 2016March 6th, 2023Blog, Technology News

are_digital_assistants_th_119043_219286If you use Microsoft products, you’ve no doubt made at least some use of Cortana, the company’s digital assistant function. If you’re in the Apple camp, then Siri has become an increasingly important part of your life. These digital assistants began as small components of a much larger ecosystem, and in their earliest iterations, were of relatively little practical value. They’re growing up now, and as they do, they’re suddenly demonstrating much more value and are poised to become absolutely indispensable.

What’s driving this change?

In two words: Artificial Intelligence. Both Cortana and Siri are becoming increasingly good at anticipating needs. This has been accomplished, by and large, via ever-improving contextualization of the data you touch.

Even last year, Cortana would have been incapable of doing much more than scheduling an upcoming meeting for you. Now though, she can not only schedule the meeting, but track the schedules of all the people you’ve invited to the meeting, and proactively let you know if anyone has any scheduling conflicts that would make them less likely to attend.

She also knows where you are, geographically, and if the meeting you’ve scheduled is in some other city, she will ask you if you’d like her to make travel arrangements to get you there. Then, she can troll through your files, using an advanced LSI keyword search to find and collect documents that may be relevant to you in terms of preparation for the meeting.

LSI (Latent Semantic Indexing) is a technology developed by Google that allows computers to understand the contextualized meanings of words by looking at the other words used with them. This is the reason, when you do a Google search for “Apple Apps,” you get a list of apps for your iPhone, rather than a collection of recipes for apple pies in the search results. The computer understands that if the word “app” appears with the word “Apple,” what you’re wanting is technology-related, as opposed to being dessert related.

It is this technology that is really taking Cortana’s functionality to the next level. Don’t be at all surprised if 2016 winds up being the year that you start regarding Cortana as an invaluable addition to your team.

Jason Manteiga

Jason J. Manteiga, Vice President of Olmec Systems, has been part of the company for over the past 20 years. He believes that having a great work environment and supportive team, is the ultimate key to success. Since being in the IT realm for over 25 years, Jason, along with Olmec Systems, has been on the Inc. 5000 “List of America’s Fastest Growing Private Companies” and Channel Futures MSP 501 “Top Managed Service Providers in North America,” along with other awards and nominations. Jason earned his Bachelor Degree in Information Systems from the New Jersey Institute of Technology. He also holds certifications in Microsoft MCSE, VMWare VCP, and Cisco CCNA. In his spare time, Jason is a contributor for The Center for Social & Legal Research (Privacy Exchange) and a member of the Morris County Chamber of Commerce. His hobbies include cycling and kayaking. He currently lives in New Jersey with his wife, two daughters and son.