Friday, June 3, 2016

Bots are awesome! Humans? Not so much.

[ed. wtf?]

In the past few days my personal resume bot has exchanged over 24,000 messages via Facebook Messenger and SMS. It’s chatted with folks from every industry and has introduced me to people at Facebook, Microsoft, and Google — plus a half dozen small, compelling teams.

What I learned about humans and AI while sifting through those conversations is fascinating and also a little disturbing.

I’ve distilled that data into useful nuggets you should consider before jumping on the bot bandwagon.

The Backstory of #EstherBot

Earlier this week I built and launched EstherBot, a personal resume bot that can tell you about my career, interests, and values. It shot to the #2 spot on Product Hunt and my Medium post about why and how I built it spread like wildfire – racking up over 1k recommends. (Get instructions for building your own free bot here.)

EstherBot speaks to the current zeitgeist. The era of messaging has arrived along with a botpocalypse, but few people have seen examples that go beyond the personal assistant, travel butler, or shopping concierge. To some, those feel like solutions for the 1% rather than the 99%.

EstherBot is relatable and understandable. The idea is simple — the resume hasn’t really changed that much in the digital age. While you’re producing all this information about yourself in the way that you use social media, your resume doesn’t actively seek out opportunities that you might be interested in. Your resume doesn’t constantly learn and get better by observing you. Instead, you have to do all this manual work, just like you used to. Why?

There’s a ton of data that could be used to connect you to better opportunities. Data including hobbies, values, location preferences, multimedia samples of your work. On and on. A resume simply can’t hold all of that, but a bot can.

by Esther Crawford, Chatbots Magazine |  Read more:
Image: uncredited