Imagining the Internet Predictions Project
 
More from Pattie Maes

The complexity of this new environment will demand a new style of human-computer interaction, where the computer becomes an intelligent, active and personalized collaborator. - 1994
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Technological developments are not going hand-in-hand with a change in the way people interact with computers. The currently dominant interaction metaphor of direct manipulation requires the user to initiate all tasks explicitly and to monitor all events. This metaphor will have to change if untrained users are to make effective use of the computers and networks of tomorrow. - 1994
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People were very self-confident ... They put forward a goal that was ambitious, and that I believe we may never achieve: to build agents that are very intelligent, have common-sense knowledge, and understand why people do things. AI researchers have been trying to do this for 15 or 20 years, and haven't seen significant results. - 1995
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The Internet is part of the motivation for agents - it's going to be impossible, if it isn't already, for people to deal with the complexity of the online world. I'm convinced that the only solution is to have agents that help us manage the complexity of information. I don't think designing better interfaces is going to do it. There will be so many different things going on, so much new information and software becoming available, we will need agents that are our alter egos; they will know what we are interested in, and monitor databases and parts of networks. - 1995
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We never will get 100 percent accuracy - [intelligent] agents will always make mistakes. But whenever you delegate to someone - be it human or program - you give up some accuracy. If you give a task to someone else, it will never be done quite the way you want. Delegation is the only way to cope with how much work you have. - 1995
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Users will have less difficulty accepting agents if they gradually gain their trust. Trust has to be earned, and that always takes time. We did increase the learning rate once we explored having agents collaborate. We found agents were learning the same things independently. For instance, messages from mailing lists or newsgroups have a lower priority than personal mail. With collaboration, agents can start from shared libraries of experience. - 1995
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I hope agents will make people feel more comfortable dealing with the overload of information, more in control. Confident agents are working on their behalf, are reliable, and never become tired; they are always looking to help the user. - 1995
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People will question who is responsible for the actions of an agent. Especially things like agents taking up too much time on a machine or purchasing something you don't want on your behalf. Agents will raise a lot of interesting issues, but I'm convinced we won't be able to live without them. - 1995

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