We and AI: Ask Phillip

In this special episode of ‘Investigating the Invisible’, we’re sitting down to interview Phillip Hunter, an expert in conversational AI and one of the brilliant minds behind Amazon’s Alexa. Phillip’s been working in the field of conversational AI for 25 years. He was formerly Head of User Experience at Amazon Alexa Skills, and now he’s embarking on his own conversational AI venture called CCAI. That means he’s the perfect person to chat to about all things conversational AI. And Kevin and Peju have come armed with plenty of questions, which have been submitted by members from across the We and AI group. Join us, as we find out: Why is Alexa called Alexa? Is Alexa always listening? What counts as conversational AI? What does talking to AI mean for the future of communication? So, forget about asking Alexa: pull up a chair, and get ready to ask Phillip. References Phillip mentions two books: Talk: The Science of Conversation, by Elizabeth Stokoe — a social psychologist explores language, conversation and communication from a scientific perspective Because Internet, by Gretchen McCulloch — a discussion of the way the internet is changing the English language Peju talks about Alexa usage rates increasing during lockdown, and there is statistical evidence of that: according to a survey by Voxly Digital in April 2020, 3 in 5 users agreed that their voice-assistant is helping them get through isolation (however, it is worth noting that Voxly Digital produce apps for Amazon Alexa and Google assistant). By the end of the episode you might even be questioning Kevin and Peju. For example when talking about male versus female voice assistants, are we stuck in thinking that a machine should have the characteristics of a human, and how dangerous is it to project human attributes on them? Should voice assistants be gender neutral, and should we stop thinking of them as versions of ourselves? Find out more about this issue on our blog: https://weandai.org/blog/ ENDS

Om Podcasten

A podcast series asking questions about artificial intelligence and the impact it's having on the world around us. Join us on our AI journey. Hosted by Kevin Butler and Peju Oshisanya Produced by Laura Robinson Theme music by Michael O'Reilly Supported by We and AI