Alexa, Siri, Cortana and Hey, Google are four of the most widely recognizable virtual assistants. Also called digital assistants or AI assistants, these are software applications that can process voice commands and complete tasks. Currently, digital assistant technology can be used to take dictation, create a to-do list, look up information and even order items online, but what will users be able to do with them in the future? If you decide to earn a STEM degree such as a Bachelor of Science in Computer Programming, you may one day have the opportunity to work on the next generation of digital assistants.
Emerging technologies are usually expected to become more complex over time, and digital assistant technologies are no different. Thanks to artificial intelligence, it’s likely that digital assistants will be able to “learn” from their users. Based on this learning, the software can make appropriate updates and adjustments in order to personalize itself to the user. This might sound like science fiction, but the concept is already in use in other areas. For instance, some voice recognition software learns its users’ typical pronunciations in order to become more accurate with dictation over time.
More Similarities to Human Personal Assistants
If you watch commercials of people using digital assistant technology, you’ll hear them asking questions like, “What sound does a whale make?” and making requests like, “Show me nearby Greek restaurants.” It’s pretty neat that software can respond accurately to these queries, but ultimately, to most people, digital assistants still seem more like a toy than a practical tool. Moving forward, digital assistants may acquire new capabilities that can make them truly useful to users. These capabilities may include:
- Waking you up within a pre-approved time period based on the ideal point for your sleep cycles
- Automatically coordinating your daily schedule and activities with your other electronic devices
- Checking traffic patterns to recommend the best time to leave the house in the morning
- Automatically ordering your mother’s favorite flowers for her birthday
- Preparing minutes of meetings you attend, and developing a to-do list based on planned objectives
- Offering supportive information based on the work project you’re working on
Roles in Health and Wellness
Consumers already have access to some high-tech devices to monitor their health status. Wearable fitness trackers are one example. One wearable tracker even specializes in tracking the biomarkers of stress to encourage users to become mindful of their anxiety levels. Moving forward, digital assistants may enter the health and wellness field. It’s possible that a digital assistant could monitor a user’s blood pressure throughout the day, automatically send the data to the individual’s doctor and notify the user about updated prescriptions the doctor has made based on that data.
If you’re excited to be part of the next wave of digital innovators, you can apply for admission to Grand Canyon University’s College of Science, Engineering and Technology. We offer numerous degrees in STEM fields, including a Bachelor of Science in Computer Programming. Click on the Request More Information button to begin your academic journey!