Social Media Sidebar


Please sign up, comment on articles and bring your friends!

Current poll

PlanetTech is asking:

What do you think about our new web site?

Love it, indeed
Really good solution
Same as old one
The old one was better
This is a new option

Quote of the day

Just because something doesn’t do what you planned it to do doesn’t mean it’s useless.


Thomas Edison

Why Google Assistant is smarter than Alexa

Posted in Online on 10th Oct, 2016 11:42 AM by AlexMuller

This question is not profoundly complex. In many ways, it’s more like a search query and it shouldn’t have anything to do with A.I. Yet, there are several important data points, and the Alexa assistant that runs on my Amazon Echo speaker doesn’t know what to do. When I ask this question, the bot tells me to set up my traffic route for a daily commute.


On the new Google Allo messaging app using the Google Assistant bot, things are a little different. Questions like this lead to much better results. Google has spent the last 18 years parsing the data for search queries. The Assistant knows I live outside of Minneapolis. It can easily calculate the miles and therefore the travel time
 Use whatever definition of A.I. you want, but the truth is, the consumer understands A.I. to be a thinking machine.
When the machines doesn’t think, it’s not A.I. As an example: When I tell Alexa to turn off the lights at night, that’s helpful. When I ask her to tell me the population of Austria, that’s a neat trick. However, when I ask her to name the smallest country by population, she balks. Why is that? With the Google Assistant, it knows the answer (the Vatican) because it’s smarter, it has parsed my query for other users a million times since 1997.
One of the key differences between the Assistant and Alexa is that Google understands context. If I ask about the Minnesota Vikings and then follow that query and ask about the quarterback, the Assistant will know I’m interested in hearing more about Sam Bradford. When Alexa says it is Teddy Bridgewater, she is technically correct (but woefully out of touch), e.g., he is injured by still considered the main quarterback. However, when I ask “when was he born” Alexa doesn’t respond.
Even better, the Assistant can understand the context of a human to human relationship. While discussing the Vikings on the Allo app with a friend today, I tagged @Google and asked about the traffic around the game. Amazingly, it worked. The traffic is congested today. It knew I was talking about the Vikings game, which takes place in Minneapolis. This contextualization tells the user there is some thought behind the machine, that the Assistant is not a glorified search engine.
It helps that the Allo app also understands me when I press the microphone button and talk. It helps that Google already knows where I live. Alexa has dozens and dozens of skills, I’ve tested everything from the front door lock in my house to ordering a pizza, but the bot is not that adept at free-form conversation, contextualizing, or handling search queries. It has a long way to go before it starts acting like an A.I. machine.
That said, I’m sure Amazon is continually working to improve this bot. I like that Alexa has tentacles around so many things, audiobooks, shopping, and even playing narrative-based games, which all hits home my point about an intelligent machine. After a few weeks, you get used to talking to Alexa and you start seeing the bot as a trusted accomplice.
Apple Siri, the Google Assistant, and Alexa are the three best examples of A.I. bots today, at least in terms of providing real assistance and building up consumer trust. There are far better bots (IBM Watson comes to mind) but I’m starting to use the Assistant almost daily, and I already rely on Siri (when I’m mobile) and Alexa (when I’m at my desk). They will only get smarter and more helpful. For now, I’m turning to the Assistant for the toughest and most challenging questions. I’ll keep reporting on how that all goes.

Tags: GoogleAIartificial intelligenceDeep learningAmazonAlexa

Read original article » Back to category



Recent headlines

  • Posted in Medicine on 2018-06-22 05:28:13
    New discovery could put the brakes on metastatic more
    Posted in Software on 2018-06-21 03:22:47
    IBM Unveils System That 'Debates' With more
    Posted in Science on 2018-06-21 03:12:27
    NASA unveils bold new plan to protect Earth from more
    Posted in Science on 2018-06-21 03:03:04
    Machine learning may be a game-changer for more
    Posted in Science on 2018-06-20 02:26:18
    Pushing the limit: could cyanobacteria terraform Mars? more
Posted in Business on 2013-10-10 01:33
China is working towards a manned lunar mission in more
Posted in Business on 2013-10-20 07:17
Spacex says China is their main competitor for more
Posted in Software on 2013-10-20 06:43
Pirate Bay Browser Clocks 1,000,000 more
Posted in Medicine on 2013-10-10 02:10
Google reportedly investing hundreds of millions into more
Posted in Medicine on 2013-10-14 03:13
Endothelial Cells Can Repair and Regenerate Organs, more
Posted in Science on 01.01.2010
Spacex says China is their main competitor for more
Posted in Science on 01.01.2010
Staring at Your Phone Could Be Making You Short more
Posted in Science on 01.01.2010
Oculus Rift virtual reality headset coming to mobile, more
Posted in Science on 01.01.2010
China is working towards a manned lunar mission in more
Posted in Science on 01.01.2010
Delivering drugs via nanoparticles to target more

Recent Blog Posts

  • Posted by AlexMuller
    In five years quantum computing will be more
    Posted by AlexMuller
    Google partners with Johnson and Johnson to make lower more
    Posted by AlexMuller
    Electron holography microscope with spatial resolution down more
    Posted by AlexMuller
    Lower cost advanced Nuclear power could dominate future US more
    Posted by AlexMuller
    Why Hasn’t AI Mastered Language Translation? more

Login to your Account

Login to your PlanetTech Account here

Remember me

Create a New Account

You just need username and password

The following errors occured:
Verify password:
Remember me