On chat as interface


There’s been a lot of talk lately about chat as an interface (something Dan Grover hit on first.) It’s fueled by the rapid adoption of Slack, and announcements that other companies, from Wechat to Facebook to Kik, are rolling out bots and opening APIs to let algorithms join us in chatrooms. Facebook’s building a universal personal agent dubbed M.

There’s been less, umm, chatter about how different chat interfaces are from traditional UI/UX, and what it’ll mean when this matures. Chat has some weird consequences for developer economics, but also for how we build and test user interfaces.

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