I’m a designer. I’ve spent my entire 18 year career as a designer. I was burnt out, looking to make a change. I took some time off, I needed to find something new in my professional life. I had several things come across my plate from small freelance projects to design positions at larger technology companies to half baked startup ideas of my own. I had been there before, done that and with my impending midlife crisis coming up I needed something that would take me in a new direction.
Until I had joined Voysis, voice interfaces were something of an anomaly. I was skeptical, I witnessed my kids using Siri to do everything on a daily basis. Like a grandpa I’d say “why don’t you just use Google or open the app?”. They used Siri for texting, calling, researching… all of it. If a camera was documenting this I would have been looking at it constantly dumbfounded like Jim Halpert on The Office. Amazon had something called Echo errrr Alexa errrr Echo, Google had a new assistant and Apple had Siri. I never really interacted regularly with any of these systems nor did I have the desire to. My millennial mindset could only take me so far out of my Gen X brain.
A former colleague had introduced me to the opportunity, again I was skeptical, but after some conversations with the Voysis team it made me curious… what is the opportunity here? My creative juices were flowing again! I found out it was about more than just speech recognition and commands. Voysis was about all that stuff but what it was really about was deep learning. Deep learning about a specific product or brand and allowing users and customers to interact with that brand in a whole new way… through conversation… natural conversation. And the catch? It’s easily implemented.
In my mind, Voysis is creating a whole new way to interact with technology that is much more efficient, whether it’s ordering a new pair of sneakers, locking the doors to my home or ordering the same bottle of wine I ordered last Tuesday. It could be a game changer. Now, I’m eager to learn, to discover and I’m constantly asking myself what everyday items around my house could be more efficient and useful If I could just talk to them.
My design career has progressed so much since I was an illustration major in college. It was about aesthetics initially, then it was about IA and creating things for users to experience online, then it was about creating ways for users to engage more and form habits. These staples are all part of great design but it had always been in the context of a screen or a piece of collateral or an advertisement. Voice is a new frontier to conquer and I’m excited by the challenge and opportunity to be a part of the talented group of people at Voysis to take it on.
My hope is over the coming weeks/months/years I get to talk with many UX and Design professionals as we approach and tackle this frontier together. I’ll be doing a Q&A blog series about how voice interfaces fit into your line of work as a designer.