To prepare professionals for tomorrow’s workplace, you need to be able to leverage tomorrow’s technology. Talespin was already doing this with their immersive AI-powered VR simulation and training modules.
Now, they’re taking it a step further by turning over a web-based no-code creator tool. To learn more, we reconnected with Talespin CEO Kyle Jackson to talk about the future of his company and the future of work.
The Road So Far
Talespin has existed as an idea for about ten years. That includes a few years before they started turning out experiences in 2015. In 2019, the company started leveraging AI technology for more nuanced storytelling and more believable virtual characters.
CoPilot Designer, the company’s content creation platform, released in 2021. Since then, it’s gone through big and small updates.
That brings us to the release of CoPilot Designer 3.0 – probably the biggest single change that’s come to the platform so far. This third major version of the tool is accessible on the web rather than as a downloaded app. We’ve already seen what the designer can do, as Talespin has been using it internally, including in its recent intricate story world in partnership with Pearson.
“Our North Star was how do you get the ability to create content into the hands of people who have the knowledge,” Jackson told ARPost this March. “The no-code platform was built in service of that but we decided we had to eat our own dogfood.”
In addition to being completely no-code, CoPilot Designer 3.0 has more AI tools than ever. It also features direct publishing to Quest 2, PC VR headsets, and Mac devices via streaming with support for Lenovo ThinkReality headsets and the Quest Pro coming soon.
Understanding AI in the Designer
The AI that powers CoPilot Designer 3.0 comes in two flavors – the tools that help the creator build the experience, and the tools that help the learner become immersed in the experience.
More generative 3D tools (tools that help the creator build environments and characters) is coming soon. The tools really developing in this iteration of CoPilot Designer are large language models (LLMs) and neural voices.
Jackson described LLMs as the context of the content and neural voices as the expression of the content. After all, the average Talespin module could exist as a text-only interaction. But, an experience meant to teach soft skills is a lot more impactful when the situations and characters feel real. That means that the content can’t just be good, it has to be delivered in a moving way.
The Future of Work – and Talespin
While AI develops, Jackson said that the thing that he’s waiting for the most isn’t a new capability of AI. It’s trust.
“Right now, I would say that there’s not much trust in enterprise for this stuff, so we’re working very diligently,” Jackson told ARPost. “Learning and marketing have been two areas that are more flexible … I think that’s going to be where we really see this stuff break out first.”
Right now, that diligence includes maintaining the human component and limiting AI involvement where necessary. Where AI might help creators apply learning material, that learning material is still originally authored by human experts. One day AI might help to write the content too, but that isn’t happening so far.
“If our goal is achieved where we’re actually developing learning on the fly,” said Jackson, “we need to be sure that what it’s producing is good.”
Much of the inspiration behind Talespin in the first place was that as more manual jobs get automated, necessary workplace skills will pivot to soft skills. In short, humans won’t be replaced by machines, but the work that humans do will change.
As his own company relies more on AI for content generation, Jackson has already seen this prediction coming true for his team. As they’ve exponentially decreased the time that it takes for them to create content, they’re more able to work with customers and partners as opposed to largely serving as a platform to create and host content that companies made themselves.
Solving the Content Problem
To some degree, Talespin being a pioneer in the AI space is a necessary evolution of the company’s having been an XR pioneer. Some aspects of XR’s frontier struggles are already a thing of the past, but others have a lot to gain from leaning on other emerging technologies.
“At least on the enterprise side, there’s really no one doubting the validity of this technology anymore … Now it’s just a question of how we get that content more distributed,” said Jackson. “It feels like there’s a confluence of major events that are driving us along.”