The Weekly Stripe – 04.05.18

Reading The Most Human Human by Brian Christian and I’m telling almost everyone I meet to read it. This week’s links are inspired by what I’ve read so far – mainly about bots – but that makes the book appear more limited than it really is.

The Turing Test is a test of a machine’s ability to exhibit intelligent behaviour equivalent to, or indistinguishable from, that of a human.

The Loebner prize is the longest running Turing test competition.  Judges interact with two ‘entities’ using a computer terminal. One of these entities will be a human ‘confederate’ and the other an AI system. After 25 mins of questioning the judge decides which is the human and which is the AI. Transcripts from 2017.

Try Cleverbot out for yourself. It’s pretty good even though, in reality, it’s just the result of cobbling together thousands of prior conversations into a sort of pureé

MGonz (1989) was a bot that’s regarded as having passed the Turing Test but “I think the success of is mainly due to its obscenity and relentless aggression” says it’s creator. Sounds a bit like Twitter.

After the hype of 2016-7 where are chatbots now? Much of what was promised  has not come to pass, but look carefully and you’ll see pockets of good and sometimes useful application.