Hi everyone! I hope you had a good July 4th. I have to admit I took a short break, attended a BBQ and ate way too much. Jibo is so lucky to never have the problem of over-eating, although someday I hope he can remind me with “Justin, stop eating too much, it’s time for you to go for a run instead!”
Thank you also for attending the presentation and posting these great questions, we’ve spoken to the team and gathered some answers. Thank you for being such great supporters. We really appreciate it.
I’m excited to hear Jon’s presentation about Jibo’s speech abilities. How difficult will it be to make Jibo speak different languages / localized Jibo. Can you share something about the process / roadmap needed for this to happen?
We have focused resources on English first for a variety of reasons including this represented the greatest concentration of campaign supporters. Adding new languages to Jibo will involve building out those language models as well as working with character differences that may be present in a given culture. It is our intention to bring Jibo to other parts of the world both directly and with partners. We will share that roadmap as it is available.
The effort to use speech in computing is to closely resemble normal human to human communication. The wake word that offers security for the user also inadvertently introduces a failure in the protocols of human communication; we don’t repeat the name of the listener each time we speak to them. This is solvable in part with facial recognition of the family members. Will this be solved with Jibo, if so how? If the user selects to have Jibo listen on eye contact, is that possible with Jibo today?
In Jibo’s initial release, we are relying on the use of a singular wake word (Hey, Jibo) to initiate interaction with Jibo. You are correct that one wouldn’t repeat the name of a listener each time relative to human conversation. That said, Jibo is human-like vs. human, so there is also a careful balance one has to strike. If too human in his interactions, it may create the wrong perception of Jibo’s role in the household as well as seem scary or an invasion of privacy. There is an interesting read on the uncanny valley hypothesis that speaks to this balance.
One can’t select to have Jibo only interact via eye contact but he will be proactive with people when he recognizes them via person ID.
This concept only begs the question, “What other ‘wake events’ should Jibo include to differentiate itself as a social robot?”
As a new product category we are keeping this simple for users relative to how to interact. This paradigm of interacting with a social robot will have a learning curve. Think about the iPhone; at the start it was about touching, and now we have swiping etc. If you have ideas on other wake events you feel would be interesting, we are always appreciative of the input.
Ideally if a user says something that Jibo doesn’t understand, Jibo should ask “Did you mean X?” and then if the answer is yes, that word should be added to the skill. Is this something that Jibo has thought about?
Wow, great idea! I really like this. It’s something we haven’t actively explored for the first version but I would definitely like this for future versions. In fact I’d love to see a 3rd party skill built using this.
Thank you everyone and I look forward to seeing you at the next experts connect.