On the second day of Le Web, pioneers of technology are gathered in Paris to discuss what innovations we should look out for in the years to come.
One hot topic of conversation is how we communicate with our devices and how many people have become inseparable from their mini-machines.
At this 10th edition of the conference, one of the hottest events in the startup and tech calendars, entrepreneurs discuss the “what next” questions.
Euronews’ Ali May reports from the event: “This self-driving car may be the future of transportation in our smart cities, but how about when it comes to simpler things, like how we interact with our devices. Here at Le Web, voice technology seems to be taking centre stage.”
We are used to typing keywords into search engines, but things are changing fast in an effort to make interaction with digital devices as intuitive as possible.
Apple was one of the pioneers in the field when it launched its intelligent personal assistant ‘Siri’ and Google is now improving this voice technology fast. Scott Huffman, the company’s Engineering Director spoke to euronews:
“We are working on this idea of turning interaction with Google from a keyboard type interaction into a natural, voice interaction where I can ask for what I want in a natural way, for example I could say ‘what’s the weather going to be like in Paris on Tuesday’ and get an answer back in a natural way – vocally, that I can listen to.”
Cofounder of Le Web, Loic Le Meur, is looking forward to seeing this particular piece of technology advance beyond what it is today.
“It’s voice! Typing is completely overrated and kids might not learn to type anymore because they just use iPads and tablets. The future is all in voice, voice as a UI [user interface] for us to interact with machines, and it’s not working yet.”
On air Google Plus hangouts are running throughout the 3 day event to allow people from around the globe to be present via live video links.
Mark Davis of euronews hosted Mark Shuttleworth, the founder of open source operating system Ubuntu. One of the questions he posed was about the tech entrepreneur’s once in a lifetime adventure.
Mark Davis: “You’ve been to space!”
Mark Shuttleworth: “Only once. What motivated me to go was the sense that this was a thing that was possible for the first time. I think in life, we are here for a very short time, we get to catalyse some ideas, we get to create some ideas and challenge established norms. But also there are big waves of change all around us all the time. Look back ten years of Le Web and what was topical and interesting back then.”