We live in a world of our own creation. This is no big secret, this is a fact. This world that we enjoy, has been created intentionally and systematically for our own progression as a species. There are several pillars of society that we have cultivated to carry us through one era to the next, and they each have their own worth and continuous value. And undeniably, one of the most important of them all is technological innovation. When we take a look around us, it is crystal clear that we are more surrounded by technology than some of us ever expected to be. While there was never any getting around the fact that technologies are responsible for a large portion of the world around us today, there is something interesting to note, and that is that not only are we more familiar with technological innovation than ever before, but we are beginning to be positively reliant on its reaches. And this here is where the controversy, the big questions, lie.
Let us look at natural language processing (or NLP, for short), for example. Natural language processing is essentially a faction of computer science, information engineering, and artificial intelligence (AI) that centres around the communications between human (natural) languages and computer (manmade) languages, with specific focus on the processing and analysation of large portions of natural language data. And while it may seem like the most obvious thing in the world to spot out, it often plays subtly in the backdrop, seldom drawing outright attention to itself as it does its work. Whether it is the transcription services that lay out language data in print, or the website live chat functions that allow for intercommunication between humans and machines (or anything else in between, for that matter), the bottom line is that natural language processing tech is stepping it up. And this is just the beginning.
When one considers natural language processing, it can be difficult to narrow it down to a real-time example that they themselves may be familiar with in their everyday. One common example that tends to hit home with the many people is the introduction and expansion of the use of chatbot functions by online retailers. These days, when we have a quick question or are too busy to be put on hold over the phone, we can quickly jump online, multitasking, and have our query answered without much – if any – human contact. This makes consumer experiences quicker, easier, and often more efficient. These automated ‘voices’ that are becoming the point of contact for us more and more in everyday life are the direct result of technological advancement meeting an increased necessity for personalised connection.
We will likely always feel the need to connect, but that connection is becoming less and less associated with human-to-human communication, and more to do with getting the most efficient response possible. That is the bottom line here, now, and into the future. We are busier than ever, and tech like natural language processing allows us to get what we want or need, in a timely fashion, without the sacrifice of more of our energy and time on often-simple questions and queries. There is a swelling emphasis being placed on natural language processing technology, and it all hinges on this deal, this notion of creating a more efficient lifestyle. We expect efficiency in everything, and functions like the live chatbot function on ecommerce sites enables consumers and businesses to get what they need from the interactions without having to invest more time, money, or energy into the process itself.
The rise of technologies (including NLP tech, of course) has resulted in a growing familiarity with said technologies. As this familiarity continues to flourish, we become more demanding, more expectant, of where the tech is going to take us next, and how quickly it is going to get us there. These days, consumers are more inclined to go online and open a live chat window than they are to dial a phone number and wait on hold. There is something less demanding about live chat, and what we seldom realise in real-time is that the decision to engage in such a function online propels natural language processing tech forward into its next iteration. In short, every time we opt for a live chat consumer experience, we are driving the next evolution of the technology. And this is something that is proving to be incredibly exciting, time and again.
Technological advancement and rapid digitalisation have been at the forefront of life as we know it. Over the years, we have become increasingly familiar with technologies, to the point where they now serve as one of the key fundamental pillars of society and modern day life. Technology is all around us, all the time. So much so, in fact, that we have become positively reliant on its existence and its evolution. The increased notability of chatbots, for example, is just one way that technology is beginning to collide with what has traditionally been interpersonal communication. The development and further advancement of innovations such as chatbot functions on websites and via devices (to name one of the most prominent examples) has resulted in the marking of a new beginning in natural language processing tech, a beginning where it is fundamentally interlaid into our everyday.