Facebook exec David Marcus on bots: “People think that it’s all for geeks”

In an interview with The Verge, the Messenger boss talked about how bots will transcend their Clippy origins and appeal to the masses—and how the Messenger app is fine-tuning its digital assistant, M. 

“We’re making M more proactive right now, so for people who have M we’ve added the ability to connect your calendar to it so it can help you ahead of you knowing you need help,” Marcus said. 

Also included was a roundup of the bots Marcus recommends, for your bot-testing pleasure: 

The Wall Street Journal has built a really good one, which I like because you can customize it to companies you follow and whenever something’s happening, they give it to you in a really good format, very visually compelling. And Poncho is really cool, and that’s why I decided to feature it in the keynote. You should try it, it’s fun — when you interact with it, they use a typing indicators, so you feel like you really are talking to the weather cat on the other side… And one of the most thoughtful bots is Spring. Personally I like fashion and brands, but I hate spending the time. And that’s the fastest way for me to get a curated list of products that actually matches what I want to buy, and buy them really quickly.