EP
60

Imagine an Army of Friend Bots (with Chris Messina)

Open Source, Conversational UI and the ushering in of a new wave of contextual design.

46 Minutes

Imagine an Army of Friend Bots (with Chris Messina)


If you've ever used the hashtag, you've used a Chris Messina creation.

For over a decade, Chris Messina has worked to transform and reimagine the way we look at the world and the way we interact with technology. A self-proclaimed “master of none,” Chris focuses on improving behavioral technology and the social web. Chris has worked in large and small operations, from owning Citizen Agency to being a part of large-scale enterprise companies like Google and Uber where he's worked to expand, cultivate, and advocate for the developer community.

Chris just parted ways with Uber, where he was the developer experience lead. He is currently focusing on conversational products and, specifically, how the use of artificial intelligence (IA) and bots can profoundly affect self-driving and automated vehicles. He believes that conversational technology is the new wave of contextual design and that speech-based user interface can provide a shift into simpler technologies.

"Imagine an army of bots that are your friends, or are essentially extensions of your friends, that allow you to tap into their extensive contextual knowledge about the subjects that you need information about. The biggest question and task is devising a way to bring all this information together and in a form that gives us more power and control over that experience, and can make the most interesting and useful knowledge available to those people into the right times and moments."

On this episode we discuss:

  • The hashtag: the idea, the reception, and what it's like today.
  • The early days of the Internet.
  • The cyclical nature of design and how success sometimes comes from defeat.
  • The power of the Internet.
  • Open source and how the idea came about.
  • The ethics of creating bots.
  • Conversational UI
  • Automated vehicles