“I don’t think as a industry we’ve agreed that to humanize our agents is the best thing to do,” says Dennis Mortensen of x.ai, which has built a successful scheduling bot available as Amy or Andrew Ingram.

Bots are already scheduling meetings, ordering meals, and analyzing bank accounts.

They’re now well on their way to becoming our full-time virtual assistants.

The AI-company Kasisto is designing a digital world that intentionally backgrounds human gender norms in an effort to avoid stereotypes and harassment.

It has built a genderless financial bot called Kai that analyzes spending, makes payments, and answers banking questions.

The predominance of female names among popular digital assistants has provoked criticism recently.

Asked if it is a boy or a girl, Eno will reply that it is “binary.” Being a banker, albeit a virtual one, its favorite color is green.Before launching Kai, the company’s founder Dror Oren wanted to ensure the bot represented the company’s values by defying gender expectations.The research suggests “people would rather get advice from women,” says Dror.“We decided it was our place to take a stand, or educate if you will.Just because people are used to getting advice from a female secretary, it doesn’t mean we have to do the same.” Kasisto designed its bot to avoid demure or deferential responses when confronting sexual innuendo, or inappropriate personal questions such as asking Kai out on a date. Oren criticized companies like Amazon and Apple whose bots are purposefully designed to use what he calls flirtatious or demure responses that play into sexual stereotypes.Capital One Financial has developed a “chatbot” named Eno, an automated program that can communicate with the bank’s customers via text message to give them information on their accounts and help them make credit-card payments from their smartphone.