The real point of artificial intelligence, at least in a social context is to create something which I will call “synthetic serendipity” that is, the ability to improve the odds of evoke that mystical feeling
That last sentence was a huge crapload of what I will borrow from a friend, “bite sized philosophy” in other less colorful words, BS.
The real point of this is rather simple, we find a way to trick the user into feeling this emotion and they will come.
Now given this non insight, how exactly are we going to go around creating this illusion of serendipity? The way is by a different approach to privacy.
People reveal information traditionally in a way which is proportional to the immediate reward and inversely proportional to the invasion to privacy. That’s a bit of a dilemma because the ability for a computer to create a serendipitous reward is directly proportional to its affront to privacy.
The way to fix this is of course to fix the affront to privacy. Facebook brought is closer to that goal by restricting information to close circles of friends, which ultimately reduced the ability to find serendipity by geographic limitations. It also makes the picture of privacy murkier than ideal, for many people have trust issues with their immediate acquaintances.
Instead we start off by personal benefit, a life logging application which of course means the user feels very open with the information there. But of course it also has to be accessible and people should not feel threatened by shoulder surfers. This could be done by hiding more sensitive information from the main view.
The second and actually serendipitous aspect is that the service automatically pairs these life logs together and shows commonalities to both parties. This might first be for people with local friend or friend of friend relationships which already transcends slightly further than Facebook.
By removing the fear of a social faux pas, we can in theory create a more intimate connecting with users.