Why This Session May Prove to Be the Most Important Issue I Learned About!

We are back in Michigan! The luscious greenery of the landscape makes me think that Michigan had its fair share of rain too. It’s back to work, and I am thankful to be.

In reflecting on the various experiences I had last week, there is one session which I continue to mull over because I sense that the implications are profound and far-reaching to real estate and life.

I attended a presentation led by individuals in the technology sector (not real estate) at the Omni Shoreham on the topics of: robots, artificial intelligence, new realities, virtual and augmented realities and how these technologies may reshape the business of real estate.

I could see how this technology has real implications for a profession like real estate where each transaction entails coordinating multiple appointments and answering many routine questions.

We watched a video featuring Google CEO, Sundar Pichai near the beginning of one of the presentations. The video demonstrates a phone call to book an appointment utilizing an artificial intelligence robot or AI. What is notable is the display of intuition and intelligence demonstrated by the AI which was uncannily human feeling through its verbal communication. The AI was able to make suggestions, request clarifications, anticipate thinking processes and respond appropriately.

We watched a video featuring Google CEO, Sundar Pichai near the beginning of one of the presentations. The video demonstrates a conversation between a customer setting up an appointment with an artificial intelligence robot (for lack of a better word) that displayed intuition and intelligence that was uncannily human feeling. The AI was able to make suggestions, request clarifications, anticipate thinking processes and respond appropriately.

I could see how this technology has real implications for a profession like real estate where each transaction entails coordinating multiple appointments and many routine questions.

You can watch the video here:

Two poignant moments emerged from the floor during the Q&A. They came in the form of questions to the panelists:

  1. A gentleman approached the microphone and shared about his recent health crisis which necessitated human beings in some cases overriding the ‘system’ to get him the care he needed. His question: ‘How will Google’s AI (artificial intelligence) or this technology deal with a situation like this?
  2. Another question: Are there some risks that we do not fully understand all this merging of data especially with regards to terrorism and the info they can now access?

I cannot say I was entirely comfortable with the answers. The truth is there is so much we don’t really understand. And the world of technology is smarter than most of us would care to readily admit because it can be a scary challenge to our assumptions of what it means to be human.

It is understandable that there are constraints to how deeply topics can be covered in a seminar. However, I wonder not to so much that the cart is before the horse (that train has left the station) but about what the implications of flying blind in the arena of new technologies and the nature of unexpected consequences.

Lola Audu

Lola is a first generation American. During the past 20 years as a REALTOR® and broker, she has had the pleasure of providing professional guidance during real estate transactions for people from all over the globe. Growing up in West Africa and having the opportunity to immigrate to America and travel in Europe created a global perspective to life and business. As the REALTOR® brand expands across the globe and now encompasses 60 nations, Lola’s interest in fostering inter-cultural dialog has facilitated the creation of innovative coursework to assist REALTORS® in engagement across multiple cultural contexts. Lola designs and teaches workshops and continuing education classes in cultural intelligence, fair housing and leadership innovation through crisis.

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