Welcome!

Machine Learning Authors: Yeshim Deniz, Pat Romanski, Liz McMillan, Elizabeth White, Corey Roth

Related Topics: @ThingsExpo, Machine Learning , Artificial Intelligence

@ThingsExpo: Blog Feed Post

Can Alexa Lie? | @ThingsExpo #ML #IoT #M2M #ArtificialIntelligence

There was a recent tabloid piece featuring a video of a woman asking Alexa if it was connected to the CIA

There was a recent tabloid piece featuring a video of a woman asking Alexa if it was connected to the CIA. At the time, the Echo Dot she was speaking to did not respond to the question. She asked a few times, and each time the Echo was silent. Conspiracy theorists weighed in. It was an amusing video, but the Daily Mail’s clickbait headline raises a legitimate question: Can Alexa lie?

How Alexa Works
According to Amazon, you can “use the Alexa Voice Service (AVS) to add intelligent voice control to any connected product that has a microphone and speaker.” Alexa uses machine learning to help it recognize what you say (Automatic Speech Recognition) and understand the question (Natural Language Understanding) and then routes your information as requested.

You can think of Alexa as voice control for any app. Instead of tapping a button on your phone, you just talk. But Alexa is not “thinking” about what you said; the system is passing the request on to an algorithm that does its best to return the correct results. It’s just like typing a request into the Amazon or Spotify or Google search bar. Whatever product or song or search result is available is what Alexa speaks or plays back to you.

Pre-Programmed Responses
There’s not a lot of AI in Alexa’s pre-programmed responses. It’s really a parlor trick. For example, ask Alexa to tell you a “knock, knock” joke or a “back to school” joke, and it will randomly pull from a short list. Ask, “Which came first, the chicken or the egg?” or how much Alexa weighs or where Alexa was born or the answer to “life, the universe and everything.” It will quickly answer with a cute response. Alexa features thousands of pre-programmed responses. Could any of those answers be lies? Of course. The system will return whatever it is programmed to return. Asking if Alexa can lie is the wrong question. Could someone build a “lie” into the third-party database? Sure. But what’s the point?

What You’re Really Asking
What you really want to ask is, “Can Alexa Voice Services’ underlying natural language understanding algorithm be trained to interpret a question and purposely respond with a false answer?” Again, the answer is no because the system does not work that way. After doing its best to figure out what you said, it passes that information on to a related database, waits for a response and then speaks the answer back to you. But …

What About Other AI Systems?
This is where life gets interesting! From January 11 to 31, 2017, Libratus (an AI system designed at Carnegie Mellon to play heads-up, no-limit Texas Hold’em) decimated four of the world’s top human poker players in a match of 120,000 hands. The humans didn’t just lose, they were a couple of million down by the end of the match.

This Is a Very Big Deal
In March 2016 when AlphaGo beat 9th Dan Devine Go Master Lee Sedol in Google’s DeepMind Challenge, people were stunned that an AI system could beat a human in a game that required both strategy and intuition. But as amazing as this accomplishment was (move 37 in game 2 changed my life, and I wrote about it in an article titled “AlphaGo vs. You: Not a Fair Fight”), Go is a game where both players have what game theorists call “perfect information.” In other words, both players can see the entire board and know the rules.

Poker Is Different
In a game of heads-up, no-limit Texas Hold’em, you’re trying to make a winning five-card hand out of seven possible cards, and so is your opponent. You do not know the identity of your opponent’s two “hole cards,” so you have to guess which of 169 possible hands your opponent may have. Game theorists call this an “imperfect knowledge” or “imperfect information” game. It’s a lot like life. Tuomas Sandholm, professor of computer science and co-creator of Libratus, acknowledged the power of the system he helped create, saying, “The best AI’s ability to do strategic reasoning with imperfect information has now surpassed that of the best humans.” In other words, computers can now out-bluff humans.

A Bluff Is a Lie!
Frank Pfenning, head of the Carnegie Mellon University Computer Science Department, said, “The computer can’t win at poker if it can’t bluff. Developing an AI that can do that successfully is a tremendous step forward scientifically and has numerous applications. Imagine that your smartphone will someday be able to negotiate the best price on a new car for you. That’s just the beginning.”

Every Known Living Thing Lies, and So Will AI
Ask any anthropologist about how quickly babies learn to lie (not just human babies). You will learn about how offspring as young as a few hours figure out how to manipulate their mothers’ attention using different types of crying sounds. The hungry cry can be used even when the infant is not hungry to receive quick attention from mom. There are tens of thousands of plants and animals that use lures or camouflage to deceive their prey. Living things lie from birth. They are naturally selected to do it. So will AI systems. It is inevitable.

Related Articles

The post Can Alexa Lie? originally appeared here on Shelly Palmer

More Stories By Shelly Palmer

Shelly Palmer is the host of Fox Television’s "Shelly Palmer Digital Living" television show about living and working in a digital world. He is Fox 5′s (WNYW-TV New York) Tech Expert and the host of United Stations Radio Network’s, MediaBytes, a daily syndicated radio report that features insightful commentary and a unique insiders take on the biggest stories in technology, media, and entertainment.

@CloudExpo Stories
With 10 simultaneous tracks, keynotes, general sessions and targeted breakout classes, @CloudEXPO and DXWorldEXPO are two of the most important technology events of the year. Since its launch over eight years ago, @CloudEXPO and DXWorldEXPO have presented a rock star faculty as well as showcased hundreds of sponsors and exhibitors!
In an era of historic innovation fueled by unprecedented access to data and technology, the low cost and risk of entering new markets has leveled the playing field for business. Today, any ambitious innovator can easily introduce a new application or product that can reinvent business models and transform the client experience. In their Day 2 Keynote at 19th Cloud Expo, Mercer Rowe, IBM Vice President of Strategic Alliances, and Raejeanne Skillern, Intel Vice President of Data Center Group and ...
More and more brands have jumped on the IoT bandwagon. We have an excess of wearables – activity trackers, smartwatches, smart glasses and sneakers, and more that track seemingly endless datapoints. However, most consumers have no idea what “IoT” means. Creating more wearables that track data shouldn't be the aim of brands; delivering meaningful, tangible relevance to their users should be. We're in a period in which the IoT pendulum is still swinging. Initially, it swung toward "smart for smart...
In his Opening Keynote at 21st Cloud Expo, John Considine, General Manager of IBM Cloud Infrastructure, led attendees through the exciting evolution of the cloud. He looked at this major disruption from the perspective of technology, business models, and what this means for enterprises of all sizes. John Considine is General Manager of Cloud Infrastructure Services at IBM. In that role he is responsible for leading IBM’s public cloud infrastructure including strategy, development, and offering m...
DXWorldEXPO LLC announced today that All in Mobile, a mobile app development company from Poland, will exhibit at the 22nd International CloudEXPO | DXWorldEXPO. All In Mobile is a mobile app development company from Poland. Since 2014, they maintain passion for developing mobile applications for enterprises and startups worldwide.
@DevOpsSummit at Cloud Expo, taking place November 12-13 in New York City, NY, is co-located with 22nd international CloudEXPO | first international DXWorldEXPO and will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world.
In his keynote at 19th Cloud Expo, Sheng Liang, co-founder and CEO of Rancher Labs, discussed the technological advances and new business opportunities created by the rapid adoption of containers. With the success of Amazon Web Services (AWS) and various open source technologies used to build private clouds, cloud computing has become an essential component of IT strategy. However, users continue to face challenges in implementing clouds, as older technologies evolve and newer ones like Docker c...
We all know that end users experience the internet primarily with mobile devices. From an app development perspective, we know that successfully responding to the needs of mobile customers depends on rapid DevOps – failing fast, in short, until the right solution evolves in your customers' relationship to your business. Whether you’re decomposing an SOA monolith, or developing a new application cloud natively, it’s not a question of using microservices - not doing so will be a path to eventual ...
The next XaaS is CICDaaS. Why? Because CICD saves developers a huge amount of time. CD is an especially great option for projects that require multiple and frequent contributions to be integrated. But… securing CICD best practices is an emerging, essential, yet little understood practice for DevOps teams and their Cloud Service Providers. The only way to get CICD to work in a highly secure environment takes collaboration, patience and persistence. Building CICD in the cloud requires rigorous ar...
DXWorldEXPO LLC announced today that ICC-USA, a computer systems integrator and server manufacturing company focused on developing products and product appliances, will exhibit at the 22nd International CloudEXPO | DXWorldEXPO. DXWordEXPO New York 2018, colocated with CloudEXPO New York 2018 will be held November 11-13, 2018, in New York City. ICC is a computer systems integrator and server manufacturing company focused on developing products and product appliances to meet a wide range of ...
Sanjeev Sharma Joins November 11-13, 2018 @DevOpsSummit at @CloudEXPO New York Faculty. Sanjeev Sharma is an internationally known DevOps and Cloud Transformation thought leader, technology executive, and author. Sanjeev's industry experience includes tenures as CTO, Technical Sales leader, and Cloud Architect leader. As an IBM Distinguished Engineer, Sanjeev is recognized at the highest levels of IBM's core of technical leaders.
Coca-Cola’s Google powered digital signage system lays the groundwork for a more valuable connection between Coke and its customers. Digital signs pair software with high-resolution displays so that a message can be changed instantly based on what the operator wants to communicate or sell. In their Day 3 Keynote at 21st Cloud Expo, Greg Chambers, Global Group Director, Digital Innovation, Coca-Cola, and Vidya Nagarajan, a Senior Product Manager at Google, discussed how from store operations and ...
We are seeing a major migration of enterprises applications to the cloud. As cloud and business use of real time applications accelerate, legacy networks are no longer able to architecturally support cloud adoption and deliver the performance and security required by highly distributed enterprises. These outdated solutions have become more costly and complicated to implement, install, manage, and maintain.SD-WAN offers unlimited capabilities for accessing the benefits of the cloud and Internet. ...
As Cybric's Chief Technology Officer, Mike D. Kail is responsible for the strategic vision and technical direction of the platform. Prior to founding Cybric, Mike was Yahoo's CIO and SVP of Infrastructure, where he led the IT and Data Center functions for the company. He has more than 24 years of IT Operations experience with a focus on highly-scalable architectures.
Headquartered in Plainsboro, NJ, Synametrics Technologies has provided IT professionals and computer systems developers since 1997. Based on the success of their initial product offerings (WinSQL and DeltaCopy), the company continues to create and hone innovative products that help its customers get more from their computer applications, databases and infrastructure. To date, over one million users around the world have chosen Synametrics solutions to help power their accelerated business or per...
Founded in 2000, Chetu Inc. is a global provider of customized software development solutions and IT staff augmentation services for software technology providers. By providing clients with unparalleled niche technology expertise and industry experience, Chetu has become the premiere long-term, back-end software development partner for start-ups, SMBs, and Fortune 500 companies. Chetu is headquartered in Plantation, Florida, with thirteen offices throughout the U.S. and abroad.
Dion Hinchcliffe is an internationally recognized digital expert, bestselling book author, frequent keynote speaker, analyst, futurist, and transformation expert based in Washington, DC. He is currently Chief Strategy Officer at the industry-leading digital strategy and online community solutions firm, 7Summits.
Bill Schmarzo, author of "Big Data: Understanding How Data Powers Big Business" and "Big Data MBA: Driving Business Strategies with Data Science," is responsible for setting the strategy and defining the Big Data service offerings and capabilities for EMC Global Services Big Data Practice. As the CTO for the Big Data Practice, he is responsible for working with organizations to help them identify where and how to start their big data journeys. He's written several white papers, is an avid blogge...
DXWorldEXPO LLC announced today that Dez Blanchfield joined the faculty of CloudEXPO's "10-Year Anniversary Event" which will take place on November 11-13, 2018 in New York City. Dez is a strategic leader in business and digital transformation with 25 years of experience in the IT and telecommunications industries developing strategies and implementing business initiatives. He has a breadth of expertise spanning technologies such as cloud computing, big data and analytics, cognitive computing, m...
"DivvyCloud as a company set out to help customers automate solutions to the most common cloud problems," noted Jeremy Snyder, VP of Business Development at DivvyCloud, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 20th Cloud Expo, held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
"Venafi has a platform that allows you to manage, centralize and automate the complete life cycle of keys and certificates within the organization," explained Gina Osmond, Sr. Field Marketing Manager at Venafi, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at DevOps at 19th Cloud Expo, held November 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.