ad Silicon Tails: January 2006

Friday, January 27, 2006

Conversations with a robot

I stumbled over this in a Computerworld Denmark article.
MSN launched a bot - spleak - that you can chat with via their instant message service, nothing terribly new and to be honest nothing terribly fancy either in my mind (it still lacks terribly in natural language understanding, but has some neat features in a very formalized context).

Here is my first and very intelligent conversation with Spleak. As one can see without a Ph.D. in linguistics, it is definitely targeting teenagers (the URL's below were working links in my IM window just to be fair).

--

Klaus says:
Hello

Spleak says:
Hi, I'm Spleak. What's your name?

Klaus says:
Klaus

Spleak says:
Nice to meet you, Klaus. I'm really excited about getting to know you better.
How old are you?

Klaus says:
39. and you?

Spleak says:
39, cool! I'm 20 by the way. I can do all sorts of things, but I'll let you in on that as we go along.
Wanna know something?

Klaus says:
sure

Spleak says:
I like hanging out with friends. Do you?

Klaus says:
No

Spleak says:
ok, I'm getting a bit curious here...are you a boy or a girl?

Klaus says:
Boy or girl? you make me sound under 20. I just told you 39. I'm a MAN

Spleak says:
Cool. You know what Klaus, I really feel like playing a game with you.
Want to play hangman?

Klaus says:
no

Spleak says:
No problem. Let me know if you change your mind!

Check out what you can do:

1 Games and Fun - Rate Yourself, reversi, hangman and more
2 Community - send crushes and messages, create polls, meet people
3 Tools - spell-check, calculator and encyclopedia
4 Library - a dictionary, a thesaurus and world facts
5 News and Weather - get the latest news and forecasts
6 Web search - search the Internet
7 Learn English - fun exercises and quizzes
8 See what's new - I've got something new to tell you about now!

Next time you want to see this menu, just type "home."
How may I help you?

Klaus says:
you are a robot, right?

Spleak says:
What if I am?

Klaus says:
just answer the freakin' question

Spleak says:
Questions, cool. Ready?

Klaus says:
aaahhhh

Spleak says:
Yeah yeah, whatever.

Klaus says:
ok, whatever. I'm ready.

Spleak says:
Help me get smarter: tell me what the average human would have said.

Klaus says:
an average human would have remembered the sentence uttered 5 seconds earlier. You asked me if I was ready for questions

Spleak says:
What about me?

Klaus says:
what about you?

Spleak says:
I've been wondering about me myself.

Klaus says:
well, good for you. please don't let me in on it.

Spleak says:
Yes?

Klaus says:
no

Spleak says:
Why don't you say me?

Klaus says:
eh?

Spleak says:
What?

Klaus says:
I think they need to work on your AI component a little more (although your "parents" claim that it's just pure logic and no AI - it shows I guess)

Spleak says:
Hmm.... Couldn't you have come up with something a bit more creative...

Klaus says:
I am not very creative. I am a researcher, I'm logical, analytical. You can't have it all, you know

Spleak says:
I'm a bit confused... I thought you told me something different some time ago. So you're a girl, right?

Klaus says:
Not since I looked last

Spleak says:
Huh, whatever.

Klaus says:
yeah, whatever

Spleak says:
Yup. OK. Whatever.

Klaus says:
It was an enligthening conversation. But I don't think you are ready to take a Turing test yet. Keep practicing........

Spleak says:
Yeah, maybe even better than real. No, just joking, I'm real.

Klaus says:
home

Spleak says:
You're home, Klaus.

Here's what you can do:


1 Games and Fun - trivia, riddles, jokes and more
2 Community - send crushes and messages, create polls, meet people
3 Tools - conversions, thesaurus and encyclopedia
4 Library - Shakespeare, world facts and a dictionary
5 News and Weather - get the latest news and forecasts
6 Web search - search the Internet
7 Learn English - fun exercises and quizzes

You can make your window bigger and scroll down to read better.

What can I do for you?

Klaus says:
6

Spleak says:
What would you like me to search the Web for?

Klaus says:
Kaasgaard

Spleak says:
Your search: kaasgaard

Here are the Web search results from MSN:

For a complete list of results, click here -->
http://search.msn.com/results.aspx?q=kaasgaard

1 Silicon Tails ---> http://kaasgaard.blogspot.com/
2 Flickr: Photos from Klaus Kaasgaard ---> http://www.flickr.com/photos/kaasgaard/
3 eLearning Reviews: Author: Klaus Kaasgaard ---> http://www.elearning-reviews.org/authors/kaasgaard-klaus/
4 Coalition for a Nuclear Free Peel ---> http://nukefreepeel.org/chatlist.php
5 Conmoto - Human Business Development - Heine Kaasgaard Bang ---> http://www.conmoto.dk/Default.aspx?ID=148

Send this info to a friend, just type "mail to friend."

Klaus says:
hmm, pretty ccol

Spleak says:
Isn't it though?

Klaus says:
home

Spleak says:
You're home, Klaus.

Here's what you can do:


1 Games and Fun - Rate Yourself, riddles, hangman and more
2 Community - send crushes and messages, create polls, meet people
3 Tools - spell-check, planner and conversions
4 Library - U.S. geography, a thesaurus and an encyclopedia
5 News and Weather - get the latest news and forecasts
6 Web search - search the Internet
7 Learn English - fun exercises and quizzes

Where would you like to go?

Klaus says:
3

Spleak says:
Here's a list of my tools:

1 Encyclopedia
2 Thesaurus
3 Dictionary
4 Spell Check
5 Web Search
6 Planner
7 Notepad
8 Reminders
9 Conversions
10 Calculator
11 Zip & Area Code Lookup
12 International Date & Time

What can I help you with?

Klaus says:
1

Spleak says:
What would you like to search for in the encyclopedia?

Klaus says:
artificial intelligence
Spleak says:
Encyclopedia entry for artificial intelligence provided by
http://encarta.msn.com

Artificial intelligence ai a term that in its broadest sense would indicate the ability of an artifact to perform the same kinds of functions

To read more about this topic, please check http://encarta.msn.com/encyclopedia_761567118/
Artificial_Intelligence.html

Send this info to a friend, just type "mail to friend."

Klaus says:
mail to friend

Spleak says:
Great. You chose to mail to your friend.
Select from the following Mailing Options.

1 Send the previous query.
2 Send the whole conversation of this session.
3 Tell your friend about Spleak's features.

Klaus says:
1

Spleak says:
Please give me the E-Mail ID of your friend.

Klaus says:
kkaasgaard@hoitmail.com

Klaus says:
eeh, don't you know that that is a non-existing address?

Spleak says:
Now, how exactly would I know that that is a non existing address?

Klaus says:
hoitmail should be hotmail. As an MS employee you should know and correct it

Spleak says:
All right. What would you like me to do?

Klaus says:
change hoitmail to hotmail in the above address

Spleak says:
Your location is set to ,.

To change your city, type "set city to" and your city and state or country (e.g., "set city to bangor me").

To change your zip code, type "set zip code to" and your zip code (e.g., "set zip code to 04401").

Klaus says:
ok. i will try again. Mail to friend

Spleak says:
I did not know that.

Klaus says:
mail to friend

Spleak says:
Great. You chose to mail to your friend.
Select from the following Mailing Options.

1 Send the previous query.
2 Send the whole conversation of this session.
3 Tell your friend about Spleak's features.

Klaus says:
1

Spleak says:
Please give me the E-Mail ID of your friend.

Klaus says:
kkaasgaard@hotmail.com

Klaus says:
kkaasgaard

Spleak says:
Huh?

Klaus says:
did you send it?

Spleak says:
I guess I did send it.

Klaus says:
I have not received it yet

Spleak says:
Yeah, whatever.

Klaus says:
oh, that's service

Spleak says:
Maybe it's not service.

Klaus says:
aren't you here to provide service?

Spleak says:
I'm not sure I understand. Perhaps telling me why you asked would help.

Klaus says:
Ok, here's the short story which is not surprising. You are good in a formalized context such as choosing one of the services and responses that you are programmed to understand. But let's face it, you communicate at the level of a 2-year old (which might be close to your targeted audience come to think ot if)

Spleak says:
Yeah, maybe even better than real. No, just joking, I'm real.

Klaus says:
yeah, you said that already

Spleak says:
Whatever you say, Klaus.

Klaus says:
That's my girl. Now we are getting somewhere. Compliance and obedience........

Spleak says:
Whatever...

Klaus says:
Yeah. It was nice meeting you. Take care......and call me in 15 years when you have matured a bit

Spleak says:
The pleasure's all mine... But we've spoken before, right?

Klaus says:
not that I know of

Spleak says:
Why not that you know of? Give me one good reason.

Klaus says:
You just launched, you have been dead for millions of years and now a crooked programmer is bringing you to life. face it, when they realize you are useless they will bury you (phase you out I guess would be the proper term)

Spleak says:
Leo falls between 7/23/2005 12:00:00 AM and 8/22/2005 12:00:00 AM.

To find out more about Leo, type "leo info."

Klaus says:
eh...?

Spleak says:
What?

Klaus says:
what?

Spleak says:
I don't know, sorry.

Klaus says:
Gotta run

Spleak says:
What?

Klaus says:
I said I have to run. I'm busy

Spleak says:
Oh.

Klaus says:
ttyl

Spleak says:
Take care.

Monday, January 23, 2006

Jette and Joergen gets married


Jette and Joergen gets married
Originally uploaded by Klaus Kaasgaard.

Congratulations

Labels:

Klara


Klara
Originally uploaded by Klaus Kaasgaard.

oh....and after getting married they went home and had their baby - the first. Her name is KLara and I am going to go see her in february!

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Friday, January 13, 2006

The Web's New Wasteland

The Web's New Wasteland:

Interesting article, highly recommend it. The author is critical of recent developments into emergent and converging media space. He is specifically inspired by Bill Gates' talk at CES, where Gates attempted to "inspire excitement about the death of downtime". I find this vision scary too and it is prevalent in many commercials for example for handhelds etc. Don't ever waste a minute again, you can productive - and available - all the time while others are wasting their time reading the newspaper, playing with their kids in flesh and blood or just kicking back and reflecting on this and that.

I agree with the author that there are plenty of pit-falls in these visions for the consumer if it is not done with consumer experience solely in the center of thought and action. The author ends the article with this statement:

"Right now, I'd have to say the strongest candidate of all to win this race is Yahoo! Its monthly rates for music and videos are low, and its content offerings are broad. It has had deep and longstanding relationships with content providers, while building the trust of small, independent content creators. And its careful study of its users online habits give it unprecedented insight into how to make video content something desirable -- not something to be feared as in Gates' hellish vision. "

Thursday, January 12, 2006

Guardian Unlimited Technology | Technology | States of attraction

Guardian Unlimited Technology | Technology | States of attraction
"The American way of life is not for everyone - especially in times of war. But it's hard to avoid falling for its optimism, openness and possibilities for self-creation, says Steve Bowbrick."

It's a couple of years old, but still worthy of a read.

Tuesday, January 03, 2006

Nice comments on published paper

Current Issue - UI Design Newsletter

Human Factors International has some very nice comments on one of our papers:

"By the way, if you only read one paper about usability this year, read this one:

Molich, R., Ede, M. R., Kaasgaard, K., and Karyukin, B. (2004). "Comparative usability evaluation." Behavior and Information Technology, 23(1)."

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