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Intel Handhelds

Intel CTO Says Future Phones Will Sense Your Mood 127

An anonymous reader writes "Ultra-smartphones that react to your moods and televisions that can tell it's you who's watching are in your future as Intel Corp's top technology guru sets his sights on context-aware computing. Chief technology officer Justin Rattner stuffed sensors down his socks at the annual Intel Develop Forum in San Francisco on Wednesday to demonstrate how personal devices will one day offer advice that goes way beyond local restaurants and new songs to download. 'How can we change the relationship so we think of these devices not as devices but as assistants or even companions?' he asked."
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Intel CTO Says Future Phones Will Sense Your Mood

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  • by DarkKnightRadick ( 268025 ) <> on Wednesday September 15, 2010 @10:09PM (#33595628) Homepage Journal

    We have gone long past ridiculous in what we are having our "phones" do (and why do we even bother to call them phones anymore). Sheesh. A mood phone? I thought mood items went out in the 80s.

  • by BonquiquiShiquavius ( 1598579 ) on Wednesday September 15, 2010 @10:18PM (#33595694) Journal
    Funny thing is, I would be happier if it concerned itself less with my current emotional state and more ensuring it just worked as it should. Considering the complexity of emotions and how differently people react to said emotions, I can't see how this could be implemented to anyone's satisfaction
  • Answer (Score:4, Insightful)

    by dissy ( 172727 ) on Wednesday September 15, 2010 @10:19PM (#33595702)

    'How can we change the relationship so we think of these devices not as devices but as assistants or even companions?' he asked."

    Put me in control of what it does, what info I see, and what info it shares with whom, and I might call it a personal assistant.

    As long as the control remains with the media companies, it is a spam assistant plain and simple, and it's only goal is to aid in selling my eyeballs off to the highest bidder for someone's profit.

    I say the answer is simple, I just don't think they want to hear it or care about implementing it in that way.

  • Re:Great (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Macgrrl ( 762836 ) on Wednesday September 15, 2010 @10:28PM (#33595750)

    The Encyclopaedia Galactica defines a robot as a mechanical apparatus designed to do the work of a man. The marketing division of the Sirius Cybernetics Corporation defines a robot as "Your Plastic Pal Who's Fun To Be With."

    The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy defines the marketing division of the Sirius Cybernetics Corporation as "a bunch of mindless jerks who'll be the first against the wall when the revolution comes," with a footnote to the effect that the editors would welcome applications from anyone interested in taking over the post of robotics correspondent

  • Out of touch (Score:5, Insightful)

    by iONiUM ( 530420 ) on Wednesday September 15, 2010 @10:33PM (#33595794) Journal

    I think this is another example of how C-level execs are out of touch with what people actually want. Nobody wants a phone that won't answer phone calls because it believes it senses you're angry and doesn't want you to say something you'll regret.

    Seriously, we don't want AI in our fucking phone. This isn't the first time I've seen this kind of disconnect, and it certainly won't be the last.

  • Re:Answer (Score:5, Insightful)

    by EdIII ( 1114411 ) on Wednesday September 15, 2010 @10:56PM (#33595932)

    How can we change the relationship so we think of these devices not as devices but as assistants or even companions?

    I had a simpler answer, best illustrated by the following:

    Two men were coming back from the mountains after 6 months of panning for gold. After settling up, getting some drink and fine ladies of the hour, they began purchasing provisions to go right back to work on their claim.

    Towards the end the shopkeeper winked at them and said, "I think you boys have forgot these...". In their hands were two planks of wood, which each a hole lined with the softest deer fur. Not much else needed to be said and the two men were on their way.

    6 months later the shopkeeper was laying out provisioning for one of them and asked, "say where's your friend?". The man replied, "Bastard took my plank one night, so I kilt him".

    The moral of the story is that if we want to have a more emotional connection with our devices we might want to start figuring out how to get blowjobs from them. At that point, I would say we would be pretty damned attached to them.


  • by Mike Kristopeit ( 1900306 ) on Wednesday September 15, 2010 @10:57PM (#33595942)
    when an interface changes results based on a user's perceived mood, the user will adapt to maximize usefulness of the device.

    so which mood does intel want to drive it's userbase towards?

  • Mood? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Strange Ranger ( 454494 ) on Wednesday September 15, 2010 @11:02PM (#33595968)
    My mood does not reflect the list of things that I need to get done.

    When I can ask my phone, just by talking into it, to schedule a meeting, invite certain people, then comb the news to see if traffic will a be worry tonight, and also send my wife a text message apologizing for being late, then report back when it's done, THEN I'll have a digital assistant. Software has barely tapped the ability to serve us with the input we're already giving it. Adding bio-sensor input and "mood detection" now is just a bell/whistle that isn't helpful to me. It's helpful to so many sales channels of which I am the target.

    Now if we had these "real digital assistants" then mood awareness would be a true achievement. The text apology to my wife would make her smile lovingly while shedding a single tear.

    But seriously, Intel should invest it's billions more into software. Fuel real demand for hardware rather than pimping out yet more bells and whistles.

    I guess medical and fitness uses will be pretty advantageous.
  • by houghi ( 78078 ) on Wednesday September 15, 2010 @11:40PM (#33596164)

    Why would I consider a non-living object as a assistant or a companion? It is an object.

  • by jheath314 ( 916607 ) on Thursday September 16, 2010 @12:28AM (#33596418)

    > I've seen enough negative comments on this subject. Are there any other positive uses that people can imagine?

    There's a reason why the prevailing reaction to these sorts of technologies is negative... they tend to follow a paradigm of making the device "smart", when what most people actually want is for the device to be "obedient". The former tends to take control away from the user, with the device altering its behavior whether the user wants it to or not.

    For example, whenever I remove the key from my car's ignition, the driver's seat moves back automatically (presumably to make it easier for an obese person to get in and out.) The "feature" annoys the crap out of me, and it became even more irritating when I once had stuff stowed behind that seat, which the seat proceeded to crush. I've tried to disable it, but it doesn't appear to be optional. I've had to adapt my behavior in where I stow things to accommodate the damn thing, rather than the other way around. It's not the end of the world, but it annoys me enough that I'd never buy another car with that "feature" again.

    I don't want my phone to predict my mood, or second-guess me, or arbitrarily alter its behavior without me telling it to. I don't want my phone to be my companion... I want it to be my dutiful slave.

  • Re:Answer (Score:3, Insightful)

    by c0lo ( 1497653 ) on Thursday September 16, 2010 @12:55AM (#33596558)

    The moral of the story is that if we want to have a more emotional connection with our devices we might want to start figuring out how to get blowjobs from them. At that point, I would say we would be pretty damned attached to them.

    Ah, clearly, I sense a mind of an engineer in the above... prone to generalization from anecdotal occurrences, confident the things can happen in predictable ways...

    I don't have answers, but only questions, illustrated by the following joke:

    The difference between a young kid and an old men: the kid believes Mr Dick is used only to take a leak; the old man is damned sure about it.

    The morals of the joke:

    • generalize and you will certainly miss opportunities (like: tunning the personal assistant to the way old men are still able to feel an affective connection; with an aging population, that's a pretty large market segment);
    • forget to evaluate consequences and you may run into troubles. Like: "since when creating attachment to the personal assistant is a feature for our product? Our shareholders ask us to sell-sell-sell... but nobody wants to ditch our older model they feel so good about".
  • Danger!!! (Score:2, Insightful)

    by karabfak ( 1037010 ) on Thursday September 16, 2010 @01:23AM (#33596690)
    Does anyone else see just the slightest bit of danger in giving up your ability to get the content you want and having some device determine what's best for you to view at the moment? Can we say brainwashing?
  • by AmonTheMetalhead ( 1277044 ) on Thursday September 16, 2010 @03:36AM (#33597176)
    I haven't had a dropped call in over a decade, maybe it's not so much the phones, but the infrastructure (or lack thereof).
  • No. (Score:3, Insightful)

    by sarkeizen ( 106737 ) on Thursday September 16, 2010 @11:09AM (#33599882) Journal
    Your thesis may be correct but your example seems moronic. Google realtime search actually doesn't appear to "predict" what I'm looking for but rather just updates my search page while it's idle. Google does provide auto-completion which is essentially an index of your prior searches and some list of prior search others have done. I don't see how an index into a list (or an updating screen) would have been so incomprehensible to you (or anyone) five years ago (especially considering that fifteen years ago the internet was all about 'push technologies').

    Mood sensing stuff is a stupid idea because generally it's trying to model a behavior that is likely far more complicated than it's inputs. Which isn't a problem in and of itself - it's what computers do but what I think is key to making this kind of technology successful is that it is acting on voluntary input from the user from there the user can modulate their actions to get the desired response. i.e. Handwriting recognition became useful when people could change their writing to something the computer could predict reliably (i.e. graffiti).

    Take your own examples...sensing you are overwhelmed with information isn't a "mood" it's a state based on a myriad of inputs, so is being "lost". The computer can look at your heart rate and perspiration but that doesn't tell it you are overwhelmed or lost. Attempting to do so will however cause the computer to change something that you likely didn't want changed and you have to deal with.

    IMHO you haven't read enough negative stuff.

The trouble with the rat-race is that even if you win, you're still a rat. -- Lily Tomlin