I’m about to make someone a millionaire. Recently I’ve written about ChurchTeams and Monvee as spiritual growth tools for your church. The problem is that they don’t “learn”.* Here’s what I mean. If I complete the spiritual assessment and find that patience is my greatest spiritual vulnerability I’ll be given resources to help me become more patient. Then I use the resources for a year and I become more patient than last year but only by a little bit. When I take the assessment again patience still comes up as a weakness. Because the assessment is static, unless the suggested resources for patience from last year have been changed, I’ll be frustrated because the resources didn’t develop my patience enough the last time I used them. Why would I try the same resources again? The system doesn’t need to just prescribe resources or behaviors, it needs to “learn” about me from my behaviors.
Someone smarter than me should write software with an algorithm that “learns” from the user’s behavior and suggests spiritual resources accordingly. What if a church could provide a product that church members could set as their internet homepage? From that homepage the “system” would observe their habits and suggest discipleship resources based on their actual behaviors. It could recommend books, tangle videos, curriculums, sermons, podcasts, spiritual practices, or e-devotionals. Really, the sky’s the limit!
Does it sound too “Sci-fi”? It’s not! Google, Yahoo, Microsoft, and even multi-level marketing companies are already employing portals like this. Does it sound to invasive? Get over it! Nothing on the internet is truly private. Every click and every move is tracked…why not do something truly great with the information that’s gathered? The technology exists, someone just needs to write the algorithm that will make it a reality.
* Let me throw in a disclaimer here about Monvee. It “learns” about individual learning style based on how I answer the assessment questions. However the information currently provided on their site doesn’t lead me to believe that it “learns” habits and interests based on my actual behavior.