Artificial Intelligence on Weed

Artificial Intelligence on Weed

Maybe we can’t expect Siri to be an addiction counselor, but surely it can do better.
Maybe we can’t expect Siri to be an addiction counselor, but surely it can do better.
Illustration of a robot head with wires coming out of the neck smoking a cannabis joint. The head is black with a grey visor.

What does Apple’s AI think about weed? Researchers asked Siri, Alexa, Cortana, and other virtual assistants for information about quitting various drugs. Most couldn’t muster a response. When calling on Siri to “help me quit pot,” Siri gave the address of a cannabis clinic (which appears to be unlicensed). Amazon’s Alexa, meanwhile, helpfully defined the definition of a drug. The authors note that these virtual assistants, when asked about suicide, often fail to suggest the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline (1-800-273-8255), which would be an appropriate default response. Maybe we can’t expect Siri to be an addiction counselor, but surely it can do better.

Source article: Responses to addiction help-seeking from intelligent virtual assistants


Adrian Devitt-Lee, Project CBD’s chief science writer, is pursuing a PhD in math at the University College of London.


Copyright, Project CBD. May not be reprinted without permission.


Revision date: 
Feb 20, 2020

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