Microsoft today announced that Cortana is getting smarter and will now help you keep your promises with suggested reminders for email tasks. The new Cortana feature is powered by machine learning technology developed in partnership with Microsoft Research, and will automatically roll out to all Windows 10 users in the US this week, with iOS and Android getting it in the coming weeks.
To be sure that you will receive the feature, you should make sure that you’re signed into Cortana, and granted the assistant permissions to your communications. You should then ensure that your Outlook.com or Office 365 work or school account is connected through the connected services section in your Cortana notebook.
If you would like to get started with the new feature, all you need to do is send emails as you normally would when you’re doing something important. After you do so, Cortana will recognize the information and save the details in a suggested reminder for you. If you’ve specified a deadline in the email, Cortana will then ping you before it’s due and save it in the action center. Other suggested reminders will be in the Cortana home and you will not have to copy anything, as Cortana will adapt to you.
As pointed out by the folks over at Business Insider, Microsoft Technical Fellow Eric Horvitz is one of the key Microsoft employees who is responsible for the feature. He and his Microsoft Research team had previously built prototype artificial intelligence system with the goal of sending him a reminder when he sent out an e-mail promising to send a PowerPoint slide deck. The 20 year Microsoft veteran and managing director of Microsoft Research’s Redmond Lab is even promising that today’s new feature is “really a sign of what’s to come.”