Thursday, July 09, 2009

Pandorabots Videos

We've begun producing a series of Pandorabots instructional videos. There are three available right now: Creating an Account and Creating a Bot, No Initial Content, and Creating a Mobile Application using Custom HTML.

The videos have been posted on Youtube. The first one is a basic introduction to accounts and bot creation on Pandorabots.

The second video is a bit longer, going into detail about creating a unique bot personality with no initial content. The same technique can be used to create a bot in a foreign language.

Our third video is all about Custom HTML. We show how to change the appearance of your bot's web page, and in particular, modify it to look good on a mobile browser.

Tuesday, July 07, 2009


The ALICE A.I. Foundation is announcing the opening of a new Wiki for sharing AIML files at Many people have kindly contributed open source AIML files over the years, and we now have a place to collect all of them. The community has also suggested many editorial changes to the existing body of ALICE AIML and they will now have the opportunity to edit the shared files. For example, people who have contributed to an ALICE clone with a corporate sales-bot personality, now have a place share their files in a common community location.

We are proceeding with this project in baby steps. About one year ago we invited a small number of AIML botmasters to join and contribute to the Wiki, to see how the project would go and what kind of problems we might have. As you will see, the free Wiki software at wikidot has some problems with respect to AIML files. We plan to migrate to better Wiki software at some point in the future.

The Wiki is already populated with AIML from the AAA set, foreign language AIML, and contributions from Square-Bear and Peter Lafferty. If it works, it will become a large repository of "the latest and greatest" AIML available. Please give it a try and give us your feedback.

Thursday, July 02, 2009

Facebook Bot Groups

John Green has created a new exciting fan page (with a great logo) for chatbot fans and beginners. He has created this to help pepole with AIML, creating their own robot and letting people know about chatbots. The page also offers news, recommendeds chatbots, and provides chatbot support.

It contains AIML scripts useful tips and sources.

John says, “I would like to make AI's go further then they ever could before.”
Click here to view the Chatbot fan page:

We've also created groups on Facebook for Pandorabots:
Loebner Prize:

and Alicebot, A.L.I.C.E. and AIML:
If you are member of Facebook, please join us there for AIML social networking!

Wednesday, July 01, 2009

Pandorabots weclomes RunABot users

One of the long-running AIML chat bot hosting services, RunABot, has announced that it is no longer functioning. Some RunABot users have contacted us about migrating to Pandorabots. We welcome the RunABot community to the world of Pandorabots AIML.

There are three big concerns to RunABot users:
1. Converting RunABot AIML to standard AIML.
2. Migrating to Pandorabots.
3. AOL Instant Messenger (AIM) interface

Converting RunABot AIML to Pandorabots standard AIML

RunABot developed its own branch of AIML that differs slightly from the common standard.
Here we explain some of the steps you can follow to convert RunABot AIML to standard AIML.

RunABot has a different interpretation of the wildcard *.

<category> <pattern>* I AM FINE</pattern>
<template>Good then!</template> </category>

The * matches 0 or more words, instead of 1 or more words. In other words, this category matches "I am fine" by itself. On RAB, that would match "I am fine" as well as "blah blah I am fine".

It has to be split into 2 categories in standard AIML, the original one plus this one

<category> <pattern>I AM FINE</pattern>
<template>Good then!</template> </category>

In this one

<category> <pattern>* CALCULATE *|* CALCULATOR *</pattern>
<template>Ummmm...sowwy Hun. I dont do anything useful like that. I
can drive you crazy...but I cant help you with math stuff.</template>

the | symbol presumably means "or", i.e. it matches inputs with CALCULATE or CALCULATOR
So in this case we would split into 2 categories, one with CALCULATE and one with CALCULATOR. But then there would actually be 8 categories because of the difference in the interpretation of *.

The more typical approach in standard AIML would be to set up "keyword" categories:

<template>Ummmm...sowwy Hun. I dont do anything useful like that.
I can drive you crazy...but I cant help you with math stuff.

<pattern>_ CALCULATOR</pattern>

<pattern>CALCULATOR *</pattern>

<pattern>_ CALCULATOR *</pattern>

The conclusion here is that the patterns can be converted It should be done by a translation program. That translation program is not difficult to develop.

Converting <that> and <topic>:

RAB put <that> and <topic> inside the <pattern> with a slightly
different format than we use:

<pattern>* <THAT=UMMM WHAT WERE WE TALKING *></pattern>
<template>Oh yea...Umm..well, ok then. I guess you think highly of
<star1> huh?</template>

We put the <topic> and <that> in slightly different places:

<category><pattern>*</pattern><that>WHAT IS YOUR NAME</that>
<template>Nice to meet you, <star/></template>

We can translate the AIML <that> and <topic> too, but it might be
worth doing it with a program instead of by hand

It seems that RAB does not use <srai>. They tried to create a simpler, "flatter" version of AIML by creating a more complex pattern language. However the conversion to standard AIML
seems straighforward if we introduce <srai>.

Migrating to Pandorabots

RAB customers should try setting up a free account on Pandorabots.

Use the option create a new bot with no initial content.

If you have an "ultimate default category" with <pattern>*</pattern> start with that one. This may be called a "no match" on RAB.

Usually I create a file called "Pickup.aiml" (for "pickup lines") and put that one category in there
you can call it "nomatch.aiml" or anything else you want.

Some RAB users like to train their bot to put to client into an infinite loop.
Pandorabots can achieve the same thing with:

<pattern>GET ME STUCK</pattern>
<template><think><set name="topic">STUCK</set></think> Ok you are
stuck. </template>

<topic name="STUCK">
<template>You can never get out of here.</template>

gives you
Client: Get me stuck.
Bot: Ok you are stuck!
Client: Help
Bot: You can never get out of here.
Client: Let me out!
Bot: You can never get out of here.

AIM (AOL Instant Messenger)

On RunABot the bots communicated primarily by means of AOL Instant Messenger (AIM). On Pandorabots the default bot interface is a web page. We had our own Pandorabots
AIM interface working for a long time, and then AOL changed their API (called TOC). Unfortunately the Pandorabots AIM interface is not supported at this time.

In the meantime we have been offering another option Pandorabots has its own API called XML-RPC. Lots of people in the Pandorabots community use XML-RPC to connect Pandorabots to all kinds of third-party systems, including Second Life, Flash, and IM services

So if we want to support RAB customers with AIM, we have to dig around to find out if someone has a AOL client working now, and if not, find someone to create it.

These group has developed a script that puts Pandorabots on IRC:
Perhaps it could be modified to support AIM and other IM services.

Program O version 1.0.3

July 22 saw a new release of Program-O, the PHP and MySQL AIML interpreter by Elizabeth Perreau. Program O version 1.0.3 has already received positive reviews from users who say it feels more like version 2.0.

Version 1.0.3 includes;
==Support for the system tag
==Many bug fixes
==My Program-O - an easy to use botmaster admin area
==Installers for the bot and admin area

If you are doing a fresh install then there is now a handy installer script that will do it for you.
But don't run this if you are just upgrading--as it will reset your bots brain!

There is now an admin area, called My Program-O, a really simple place to train and monitor your bots. You can upload your AIML, teach your bot, update it's personality, read stats and logs.

Elizabeth says, "My Program-O is also available under the GNU license so please feel free to mash it up for your own needs."

You can check out Program O at
You can download the latest files here

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