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How Artificial Intelligence will Impact FAQ Software Over the Next 10 Years

By April 18, 2016Article

In the near future, artificial intelligence may well disrupt the way Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) software is conceived. Naturally we are accustomed to traditional forms of FAQ with a simple user interface that reveals questions and answers. But what if you could interact not only with software but more intelligent forms of technology including robots and cognitive learning systems? 

Not so long ago, IBM revealed the idea behind Watson, a system that is capable of processing natural language and machine learning in order to uncover insights and “help connect the dots.” These types of systems are able to analyze huge amounts of data and extract meaning for future reuse and consultation. This natural form of “assembling” questions and answers was not possible decades ago. 

Benefits of machine-assisted learning solutions 

Currently we are entering a new wave of disruption where machine assisted learning will be able to pick up information from various sources and put it together in a simple form. Imagine how easy it will become to develop manuals, guidelines, checklists and other forms of work documentation. 

For example, imagine if FAQ software could help define the functions that the design must perform and translate these into required properties and also help determine factors such as costs and outcomes. If it is able to register this information based on a best-practice approach, then FAQ could become a “do or die” tool for a large number of firms. Given the fact that the use of sensory technology is also rising, the amount of data that can be analyzed will duplicate in time and artificial intelligence will be required to process this information in order to take action for multiple business purposes and areas. 

3D print technology is also causing a hype in various industries as the printing of standard consumer goods is revolutionizing the manufacturing industry in various ways. Imagine a group of engineers working on a prototype design and using FAQ technology not only to solve design issues but also to work around the entire design process, providing step-by-step answers and ending up with the actual 3D print model. In this sense, FAQ software would be able to pick up on each detail, analyze patterns and probably suggest new and better forms of developing the design process.   

Three criteria for FAQ systems success 

The success of FAQ systems will be interpreted by three fundamental variables: accuracy, speed and quality. This means that faster learning cycles will also need to secure quality above quantity. This is evidently one of the greatest challenges that machine-assisted learning needs to address and, in turn, will require a deeper understanding of how machines interpret data and provide solutions based on specific algorithms and variables. Although this may well differ for each field (take into consideration the complexity of conducting a surgical operation, for instance), the results will help improve efficiency and performance levels. 

User interfaces will change due to artificial intelligence 

The Internet of Things (IoT) as well might help us become more digitally assisted than ever before. If we are able to access a simple FAQ interface from various devices (including when taking the milk out of the fridge in the morning), then distance and time won’t be a problem. 

User interface will be another characteristic that´s bound to change. Today we interact with applications and a computer interface, but this will soon evolve. 

Cognitivetoys, a firm dedicated to the design and manufacture of “smart” toys, created a dinosaur powered by Watson. The toy connects to a proprietary platform which, in turn, consults Watson for Q&A statements. It is able to have conversations, give out spelling and math quizzes and tell jokes; and special customizable options are available for parents. The dinosaur is, in fact, playing an avatar role and becomes a gateway for a more dynamic process of Q&A interaction. 

A more vivid example can be appreciated in the form of Jarvis, Iron Man´s trusted machine assistant, which is able to understand and make complex decisions. Indeed, with the advance in robotics, we might have specialized machines help us in various activities and provide us with the answers we require in order to effectively predict outcomes. FAQ software will be the backbone.   

Impact of emotional intelligence software 

Without a doubt, FAQ software will evolve to the point of becoming embedded in every successful corporation´s fabric. The key of development will remain at the heart of natural-language understanding, and there is still a lot of work to be done in this field. As software takes on a more natural and engaging manner of work (like asking Siri “Where can I buy a pair of shoes?”) the next step will be to develop emotional intelligence, which will take the “hard” out of most FAQ software and platforms. We must bear in mind that technology has progressed a lot in recent years and fundamental human skills such as writing, looking, reading can be performed by computers and, sometimes, even more accurately than humans. 

So the next time you engage with an FAQ platform, you might keep in mind that the journey in the next years will involve more engaging interfaces, far more accurate and predictive answers carried to the point that the next design draft in your office might not be human written. Remember that analysis can be carried out in a fraction of time and we are just a doorstep away from receiving a functional QA structure based on that analysis – all done in just a click or two. 

Sameer Bhatia is founder and CEO of ProProfs, a leading provider of online learning tools for building, testing and applying knowledge. ProProfs Knowledge Base Software is used to create highly-searchable online FAQs to improve customer service and reduce tickets. It helps centralize access to organizational files, documents and how-to articles ensuring they can be accessed across multiple devices and platforms. The site hosts 1,000,000+ pieces of content in 90+ languages. You can find him on Google+ and Twitter.








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