Don’t be afraid to say “I don’t know”

A uselessly generic answer to a specific question

The original “answer” was useless and worse

Source: NAB (

If you can’t answer a question, “I don’t know” is a much better response than generic marketing fluff.

I took the first screen shot a few years ago. The improvement in the current version is obvious:

Some sensible suggestions that actually match the question asked

Improved design increases relevance

Now the answers match, to a reasonable extent, the question I asked.

And if the system really doesn’t understand the query (like: “What is the unit of power?”), it has the grace to admit it. “I’m sorry, I didn’t understand your last question” is an honest approach, and it’s OK to follow that with some marketing copy.

A message beginning "Im sorry, I didn't understand your last question."

“I didn’t understand” is an honest response

It’s also interesting to note that the picture of the human in the original has been replaced with a more clearly artificial, cartoon-like figure, and that the ambiguous title “Online Assistant” has been replaced with “Virtual Assistant”.