Maricopa County Clerk’s Office to introduce voice assistant technology


Alexa, what paperwork do I must get a wedding license in Maricopa County?

Alexa, the place is my courtroom?

Maricopa County is now utilizing voice assistant expertise to assist the general public navigate the Superior Court Clerk’s Office and entry info and paperwork associated to issues like marriage licenses, passports and U.S. naturalization filings. 

The expertise, known as NOVA, is the primary of its variety, in line with Maricopa County Chief Know-how and Innovation Officer Richard McHattie. NOVA builds on the mannequin of IBM Watson, a man-made intelligence program that may reply to pure language.

Folks can entry the expertise by downloading the Amazon Alexa app, out there on the Apple App Retailer, Google Play and Android.

Equitable entry to info

As tech literacy grows with the generations who’ve grown up holding iPhones, the Amazon Alexa ability will give the general public simpler, extra fast entry to the data they’re looking for, McHattie mentioned. 

“Jeff Nice spearheaded this effort, significantly as a technological innovation,” McHattie mentioned. “We’re very keen about increasing entry to justice. So this specific device is only a means to attain that.” 

The primary model of the expertise is already out there. It supplies restricted details about tips on how to discover paperwork for issues akin to marriage licenses and passports, McHattie mentioned. 

The second model is predicted to be out there by the tip of the yr, in line with McHattie. It would enable customers to ask NOVA about any info out there on the Maricopa County County Clerk’s Workplace web site. 

The purpose of NOVA is extra than simply effectivity, it is also about equitable entry to info,Clerk’s Workplace spokeswoman Tiarra Earls Haas mentioned in an emailed assertion. 

“The apprehension and concern of the courtroom system that individuals can expertise, together with the challenges of not understanding how the techniques work … could be a limiting consider entry to justice,” Earls Haas mentioned.

She mentioned there’s a rising development of individuals opting to characterize themselves in civil and household courtroom as an alternative of paying an lawyer. However she mentioned people not skilled with the courtroom system can miss essential hearings or submitting deadlines, and finally have warrants issued for his or her arrest.

NOVA is predicted to offer extra a equitable justice system by permitting individuals to entry courtroom info with out going to the bodily workplace or counting on a pc, saving them money and time, Earls Haas mentioned. 

“These in a inhabitants with much less revenue and much less means usually depend on their cellphones and really have good telephones as their solely technique of connection to public providers,” McHattie mentioned. 

As a downloadable ability for Amazon Alexa, NOVA’s entry to the general public is barely restricted by the house on one’s private gadget. 

McHattie mentioned NOVA is just not a technocratic band-aid to the inequity within the justice system system, however an actual resolution that can assist many Arizonans entry justice.

“We’re attempting to do this by enabling as many means as doable for purchasers of each imply to have interaction with our providers,” he mentioned.

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