Microsoft has come out with an upgraded predictive keyboard app called Word Flow. The app has been available with its initial launch on iOS earlier this spring, though the latest version offers more than intelligent word suggestions and support for one-handed typing. The latest release offers information from the Bing search engine that allows users to look up information on restaurants, news, video, GIFs, and more.
Word Flow started on Windows smartphone and desktop platforms. The app integrated the ability to text via swipe and giving users suggested words to tap on. Its strength though focused on its one-handed typing, which displayed a unique wheel like interface that is accessible from one side of the screen.
Its 2.0 version of the app now includes support for Bing, GIF, and emoji searches. This was a reaction to Googles Gboard app, which integrated the Google search engine into the keyboard. The update allows users to look up information on the web such as news and weather, and can access the address book to find contacts more easily.
Users can download Microsoft’s Word Flow for free.
Dag Kittlaus and Adam Cheyer the creators of Siri, Apple’s digital assistant, have created the next generation artificial intelligence (AI) assistant called Viv.
Kittlaus and Cheyer have been developing this AI for the last four years and today, May 9th 2016, they debuted Viv for everyone to see. Viv functions differently by connecting to various services, at Disrupt NYC the AI handled multiple complex requests by connecting with third-party merchants to buy goods and even book reservations for its user. Viv will also be capable of learning and teach itself, allowing for more personalization and growth through more usage.
Viv is considered the next gen Siri though Viv looks and behaves entirely different. With Siri you had queries sent off to a search engine to display results and requests, and could only handle a small number of tasks. Viv behaves more like Amazon’s Alexa by connecting to different platforms, devices, and services. Viv is in an essence more social than Siri, it also handles natural language comprehension better than Siri.
Currently Facebook and Microsoft have their own AI that handle multiple complex requests and can connect to third party services. Microsoft recently announced their bot engine and showed Cortana connecting with different apps and Facebook has their open platform that allows developers to build bots for Messenger. Though Viv feels more like Hound. Hound is more of a underground AI that hasn’t taken off with general consumers. It has an incredible ability to understand natural language and boasts its dominance through speedy results.
Viv’s creators also showed “Dynamic Program Generation,” which shows the codes used by Viv after a verbal request and giving a view into how it understands and handles requests.
Viv and other AI like it could change the way we interact with services. In the future you may no longer be required to call or look online to purchase good or services, you could just tell your AI what you want and it could do it for you. Ordering food, booking flights, rooms, or renting cars may all be done through AI assistants.