Monday, April 09, 2012

Chatbots 3.2 Conference Report

Each year for the past three years, the leaders of the chatbots field have gathered together to present their latest work at the Chatbots 3.x conference.  This year, the conference, held in Philadelphia on March 31, 2012, was a huge success.  We had 30 attendees and 11 high quality presentations.  The conference was also another great opportunity to meet and talk with like-minded chatbot professionals and enthusiasts from around the world.

Some of the most exciting developments revealed this year were in the area of mobile apps.  Apple did us all a favor by releasing Siri last year.  A few people remarked that it's no longer necessary to explain to people what a chatbot is because everyone knows what Siri is.   Pandorabots announced the upcoming release of CallMom, a mobile virtual assistant based on AIML.   We also heard about vritual reference desk librarians, bots that reason and access databases, new scripting languages, bots promoting political candidates, lifelike avatars, general artificial intelligence, chatbot standards, and applications in ESL.

Our host Francis Taney, Esq. gave an excellent "Ask the Lawyer" presentation where he answered questions posed in advance by our speakers.  Although many of these questions were concerned with intellectual property issues, this year saw a significant increase of interest in the issue of data privacy.  Mr. Taney outlined the various state, federal and foreign statutes and regulations that impact storing and sharing personal information.

The presentations were videotaped and will be available on Youtube.  We will also post links to the speaker's slides and videos here as they become available:


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