Virtual assistants are going to replace your mouse and touchscreen

Oli Scarff/Getty The idea of everyone having a virtual assistant sounds a bit pompous. After all, an “assistant” has traditionally been a luxury reserved for the elite. Yet, many companies are working on bringing virtual assistants to the masses — including Facebook. On-stage at the O’Reilly Next:Economy summit, Facebook’s AI guru Alexandre Lebrun and Siri’s original creator Adam Cheyer took issue with the notion that these tools are for the elite.  “Really it’s just another way to interact,” Cheyer said.  Both argue that these “virtual assistants” are just new ways of interfacing with a computer. First came the keyboard and the mouse, and next it will be using natural language, Lebrun explained.  Cheyer used the example of needing to pick up a bottle of wine that pairs well with a lasagna en route…


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