Intelligent Beings Learning to Live with Artificial Intelligence

from: Longevity Explorers | Providence

Discussion Summary

On November 18, 2020, Providence Circle members enjoyed an opportunity to share with each other their use of technology essential in our daily lives. Diane Strommer  and Jerianne Berman shared their use of technological tools for safety, health and connection in a virtual world, and several other members added to the infomative exchange.  

Diane Strommer shared her ways of taking advantage of her Alexa, a smart home speaker with artifical intelligence features. Others in the Circle were familiar with Alexa, Echo, and Dot, all working as home assistants in a similar way, but most participants did not make such wide-ranging use. Dr. Strommer made particularly effective use by having a smart-phone link to her Alexa devices. That connection allows her to create shopping lists and then check on her phone at the store; to add things to her calendar from anywhere; to turn on lights before entering her home; to open the garage door; to adjust the thermostat.  Most attendees were familiar with a few oral commands -- listening to music or the radio; asking for a reminder at a specific time; reading audio books; checking the weather.  But Dr. Strommer reported on her use of Alexa to select a recipe and provide step-by-step directions for preparation, and that was new to most others. 

Jerianne Berman described her reliance on her i-watch, particularly in the health realm.  An SOS button automaitically calls 911, family members, a doctor, once those have been programmed. The watch also provides an accurate cardiogram for a physician to monitor, and newer models can read oxygen levels. Ms. Berman has found these features especially useful -- and as she showed to laughter, it's a regular time-keeping watch, too!

There were a number of audience questions about the ways to achieve these forms of help from the devices, the costs, and alternative products with similar features.  Privacy issues sufaced as a major concern, and there was a wide range of levels of willingness to tolerate the risks that go along with the benefits of the internet connection.  At the close of the conversation, Dr. Strommer and Ms. Berman agreed that it can seem intimidating at first to make use of these devices, but it becomes easier over time and can addd greatly to quality of life, particlullarly as  we age.

 

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Key words: 
artificial intelligence, Amazon Echo, i-phone