How chatbots are changing the world.
Chatbots are changing the way we converse with our computers.
They are a new kind of interactive machine that can take in natural language and instantly parse it into something a computer can understand. They don’t have the same problems as old-fashioned bots; they can actually talk to us on our level, rather than simply logging what we type in and spitting out results or commands.
We wanted to show you just a few effects chatbots have had in transforming the world around us: from healthcare, travel, marketing, entertainment – there is no limit! Read on for examples of how chatbots are changing two different industries today.
“A synthetic human [a computer program that can talk and behave like a real person] may be further developed to provide additional help and information in the future. “ John McCarthy, MIT computer scientist
In healthcare, chatbots are pushing back on the limitations of a human nurse. Chatbots can take care of simple tasks – they can perform simple calculations, sort through documents at a hospital to find medical information, or even stay on call 24/7 if necessary. And more importantly, as they get better at it, we’ll turn them into conversational expert systems that will teach us how to take care of ourselves better in the future.
That’s why a new startup called My.MD has come up with an idea that is truly groundbreaking – instead of looking for information on Google or Wikipedia, you can have a chatbot tell you all that and more about your medical complaints. While it will take some time, eventually these chatbots will be able to recognize common symptoms on their own and prescribe us the right medicine or treatment.
In marketing, chatbots are changing the way we find new products and services. For example, if you want to buy a new product online, you’ll be able to use instant messaging with a sales assistant via Facebook Messenger to shop for it and negotiate the best price available.
Then there’s the story of airline JetBlue, which has been using chatbots to handle basic inquiries from customers since 2015. When these passengers are unable to get a response from the live agent, they can ask the chatbot questions related to their flight requests. And by doing this, they’ve seen an increase in customer satisfaction and customer loyalty.
Chatbots are changing the way we get our movie information – in November 2016, IMDB launched its service called “M” – a new artificial intelligence interface that can be accessed through text messages or IMs to look up information about movies, as well as show schedules for nearby theaters. The chatbot is capable of understanding complex questions and will return answers in an easy-to-use interface.
“M is powered by artificial intelligence that’s trained on IMDb data and natural language processing algorithms. M uses machine learning to continuously improve its service, but we’ve taken some shortcuts to get it up and running. While a human would have no problem answering your questions 24x7, we’re going to be a little less available at first. To make up for it, we plan on being much faster than you would expect from a human – so ask away!”
Chatbots are changing the movie and TV industry by making it easier for us to access information about whichever video content we want to buy or rent. It's also changing how we release our products: if you're a publisher looking to get your content in front of a large, targeted audience, chatbot technology can help you do that. PopcornStand is one example of a bot that lets users check out new movies and purchase or rent them with one click.
In gaming, chatbots are already more popular than ever. While multiplayer online games like World of Warcraft are still mostly solo, there are still many other games that can be played by you and thousands of other players online. So how do you communicate with your team then? Using chatbots, that's how!
Chatbots have been used in MMOs for years to keep track of everything from inventory to quests to characters to spells. In addition, they serve as replacements when the community is very global and dispersed. So if a world event occurs in one game server, all players on several different server can immediately experience it as they log into the same game account.
In another gaming application, Agar.io uses chatbots to provide a texting-based interface for the players, allowing them to communicate with the human player characters without having to go through a portal interface. The bot will feed on everything that it learns from the player in the form of commands and answers.
In case you’re worried about privacy, don’t be – we’ve made sure that you can communicate with your chatbot in private by using encrypted messaging channels that protect all your data from being intercepted.
“Chatbots will be very big. We are going to try to move as many of our online services as we can onto conversational platforms.” Mark Zuckerberg, CEO of Facebook
In entertainment, chatbots are changing the way we get in touch with our favorite stars. One great example is Sir Michael Gambon – a professional actor from England who starred in movies like Harry Potter and The King’s Speech. He uses a chatbot to communicate with his fans and gives them updates on his work, upcoming events, and new projects he is working on. This helps him build lasting connections with his fans while reducing the administrative overhead that goes into running an official website.