Odds are you talked to a robot last month. Artificial intelligence in the form of retail chatbots capped a huge year for e-commerce over the festive season, from supermodel personal shoppers to customer service. What seemed like a fun curio when IBM’s Watson was winning game shows only five years ago is now the “secret sauce” in a massively changing ecosystem.
But one conversation that seems to have been remarkable absent from this revolution is any popular discussion around how, why and what we name these tools. Especially as the semantics around such technology is upending the very foundation of language: who knew you could order a pizza without words?