First we had websites built of flat html pages (those were the days). Then we had dynamic, database driven sites.
Now we have adaptive sites to suit our personal profiles giving us tailored web experience base on our previous interaction with the site.
I guess for most of us the visual idea of artificial inteligence is a humanoid robot as in the movies, but without being a robotics expert it seems to me that robots in today’s 21st century (yes you ARE living in the future) all perform manual repetative tasks with no real need to be customer-friendly, self-aware or evolve.
Websites on the other hand have evolved significantly over the years, going from static to clever, but each within their own space.
What if your website could learn from other sites?
Let’s say your website could monitor and track behaviour and usage on your competitors’ sites. If their customers suddenly starts buying red skiing gloves, your site will react by promoting, maybe even discounting, your red skiing gloves.
Taking that idea further, what if you website could track websites that fits your users’ lifestyle behaviour? Analyse the subject of photography used, analyse colour changes, tone of voice etc and react by creating your customers’ vision of a perfect site. They don’t know it ofcourse, but I am sure they would react positively to it.
What if your website could learn from your users behaviour across the web?
You already track your users on your site, but what if you could track them across the web?
“Cyber stalking” suddenly gets a whole new meaning but the idea is not that far fetched with site independant behaviour applications such as Facebook Like, Facebook connect and Twitter/Yahoo/[insert]’s similar services.
A plausible evolution of the above would be getting all these inteligent sites to work together in a complete all encompassing, but ambient digital environment that modifies itself as we navigate around unaware of the ever changing world surrounding us.
If true self-aware AI will ever happen I think it will happen on the net in such an environment created by intelligent sites for us.
But the very purpose and nature of these constant modifications will always push them to hide from us as much as possible to avoid disrupting our pleasant user journey/shopping experience. So the question then becomes:
Would we ever recognise the birth of artificial intelligence happening back stage in the play created for us? Would we ever know?