Electric Elves: What Went Wrong and Why
Software personal assistants continue to be a topic of signiﬁcant research interest. This article outlines some of the important lessons learned from a successfully-deployed team of personal assistant agents (Electric Elves) in an ofﬁce environment. In the Electric Elves project, a team of almost a dozen personal assistant agents were continually active for seven months. Each elf (agent) represented one person and assisted in daily activities in an actual ofﬁce environment. This project led to several important observations about privacy, adjustable autonomy, and social norms in ofﬁce environments. In addition to outlining some of the key lessons learned we outline our continued research to address some of the concerns raised.
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