Tuesday, January 03, 2006

How to find a human

One of my friends recently sent me a link to “The IVR Cheat Sheet", which is a list of companies together with instructions on how to bypass their phone-answering computers and get directly to human. The list definitely goes straight to my bookmarks collection – I prefer talking to human being whenever it is possible (though, I have to admit it, couple of times I’ve encountered really helpful answering systems). At the same time, the mere existence of this list points out a couple of interesting things:

1. A very simple idea: not everything that can be automated should be automated. Deciding what can be done by a computer and what should be left to human is an important part of the design process.
2. The question itself: “How to get past a computer to a human being” is a disturbing one. Sounds like something from a sci-fi book – maybe we live in one already?

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1 comment:

Fred said...

Yes, we are moving to the ideal futuristic control/management system consisting of 3 components: a human, a dog and a computer. The human is resposible for feeding the dog and dog's responsibility is to keep humans away from the computer.