16 – Cortana, the Beginning of a New Age

Cortana, an advanced AI hologram created in the Halo universe, the game that saved the original Xbox from utter failure, was a revolutionary in the idea of how an AI can be created as and of course, is science fiction as on now.

However, over the years, especially as of recently, microsoft has gotten into the industry of AI creation for public users, and have since used cortana as their ‘personality’ for the users since it gave a more human characteristic to the AI and that it helps the users get a sense that the AI is more helpful and useful due to the somewhat genuine feeling that it is a ‘normal’ person. More specifically, Cortana, the now AI for windows 10 and some microsoft windows phones, has a feature called ‘chitchat’ that allows it to have more human interactions with the users, and not just straight robotic commands, though the main purpose of Cortana as of now is to be a  personal assistant on the device.

Not only does Cortana try to seem more human like through small talk, the developers also try and make it so she has ‘short’ and ‘long’ term memory in which produces a more rich type of dialogue between the AI and Cortana, and that’s just neat.

Cortana is still most definitely a work in progress by Microsoft’s standards, however the current end-goal for them would be to have a fully functioning complete AI in which the intelligences of it almost mocks that of an actual human that can fully assistant the human in everyday life and work. The thought of this is very provoking on many levels of human thought, mainly on the more ethical and moral side of things. The ‘idea’ that this type of AI would help and be more of a solution to human’s everyday problems raises more questions than answers. If an AI has the neural capacity that of an actual human, how exactly would that look like? would it always be ready and willing to help the owner of the device that has the AI installed on?


11 thoughts on “16 – Cortana, the Beginning of a New Age

  1. Hello Gabriel,

    I remember when I played with my Xbox. There was a level were I had to save Cortana, and it is amazing to see how companies are trying to replicate this in reality. The first time I saw windows 10, I was surprised to see Cortana It is amazing how fast technology is improving.


    1. Hello Salvador,

      It is amazing how fast technology is advancing, but because of how quickly it changes users have not adequately adapted to it.


    2. Yes, I like how companies are incentivising their products by adding some nice little nostalgia sprinkled in. I still remember when I used to play Super Mario 64 on my Nintendo 64 and I thought the graphics were amazing.


  2. Hello Gabe,

    It sounds like Microsoft is trying to make Cortana a powerful tool. I think that’s a great goal for them to have, but I dislike the way they force Cortana and their other software products onto consumers. When Cortana initially came out on the Windows OS, I wanted to remove it because it is also used by Microsoft as a means of collecting user information.


    1. Hello Eliasar,

      I hadn’t taken this into account. I was just thinking about how cool Cortana was. Awesome response.


      1. Hello Salvador,

        Thank you. Sometimes these tools seem like they are amazing, but they don’t think about the drawbacks that the technology creates. I feel it has become common for companies to try to take as much advantage their users’ data to create more revenue. It’s come so far that some companies use the fact that they don’t track user data as a marketing strategy to draw in new users.


    2. I completely agree with you, I hate when companies force unwanted software into their other products. Kind of reminds me of the windows 10 pop ups that I would get every single day until I finally upgraded.


  3. Hello Gabriel,

    I remember playing Halo as a kid and Cortana was an AI hologram who assisted master chief on his missions. Now, Microsoft is using Cortana as their personal assistant for their OS and windows phone, which is pretty cool. I am still on Windows 7, so I have not tested out the Cortana personal assistant yet, but what you are describing seems like Cortana could be a powerful tool. You mentioned that developers are trying to make Cortana more human-like…just thinking about it is nerve-racking. Like what Salvador stated, it is crazy how fast technology is improving.


  4. I can’t help but think while reading this article that Cortana sounds more and more like that movie Her that came out a few years ago. Its about new technologies that are human like and surround our daily lives that we can easily fall into its trap. Seems a little eerie but still really facsnating.


  5. That moment you realize that the Cortana in Halo and the Cortana on your windows 10 are the same thing. I honestly did not make the connection until I read this post. I somehow feel ashamed of myself for not connect the dots before this.


  6. It is so cool to see that Cortana is becoming more integrated with other platforms like mobile. I still have a problem with using these types of technologies because of fear that a company has recordings of my speech but I think that some subset of consumers find it useful so I am glad that they are able to use it.


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