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NASA Uses AI Customer Service Robot In Second Life

Soulskill posted more than 5 years ago | from the get-a-first-artificial-life dept.

NASA 45

Linguo writes "Fusing human psychology with an advanced artificial intelligence engine, MyCyberTwin's virtual humans are being used by organizations like NASA and National Australia Bank to improve their customer support levels. MyCyberTwin technology is designed to allow almost anyone to build a virtual, artificial human — called a CyberTwin — which can handle such tasks as personalized customer support, client sales or even entertainment and companionship. CyberTwins can take the form of a clone of yourself, or a representative of your company, and they can live in almost any digital environment, including Web sites, virtual worlds, blogs, social network pages and mobile phones."

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Hoooney! (0, Offtopic)

alexborges (313924) | more than 5 years ago | (#28623775)

LUCAS: No honey, im not comming home, i have new requirements.
HER: How come, I even brought out my neglige
LUCAS: Im sorry, ill be there only after three
HER: Well.... why dont we get together in 2nd life: you know how i fantasize about your office desk.
LUCAS: Well thats one way to do it! You are on baby! .... Three am, lucas arives home....

HER (sleepy): Hey baby, that was wonderful. I love the way you speak on cyberspace.
LUCAS (grinning): Yeah baby, I know.

That could be useful in Second Life (3, Funny)

Minwee (522556) | more than 5 years ago | (#28623781)

"Hey, it looks like you are trying to create an army of flying penises! Would you like some help?"

Re:That could be useful in the ISS (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28624045)

"I see you're trying to open the pod bay door. Would you like some help?"

"I can see you're really upset about this. Would you like a stress pill?"

Re:That could be useful in Second Life (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28627015)

Who the hell modded this Off-topic?

Do you even PLAY Second Life?
Flying Penii* are commonplace.

* [I use the -ii instead of -es because it is digital ;) ]

Re:That could be useful in Second Life (1)

Baloo Uriza (1582831) | more than 5 years ago | (#28630605)

"Hey, it looks like you are trying to create an army of flying penises! Would you like some help?"

I guess if all you want to do in SL is be unoriginal, unfunny, and b&, then yeah, sure, your suggestion would be useful.

Stepford Wives (1)

Canazza (1428553) | more than 5 years ago | (#28623803)

Stepford Wives anyone?

Re:Stepford Wives (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28623961)

I was thinking more along the lines of Caprica.

Prepare... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28623875)

To be underwhelmed, i suspect.

Can I program a Cybertwin to... (2, Funny)

Monkeedude1212 (1560403) | more than 5 years ago | (#28623889)

Troll /.?

Re:Can I program a Cybertwin to... (1)

Yvanhoe (564877) | more than 5 years ago | (#28624391)

You can even program A.L.I.C.E to do that...

really? (1, Troll)

Sir_Lewk (967686) | more than 5 years ago | (#28623937)

People still care about second life? Amazing.

Re:really? (1)

rodrigoandrade (713371) | more than 5 years ago | (#28624479)

I do. It and The Sims (and Spore, to some extent) were the most hyped games ever, which ultimately failed to deliver. Let's not forget the mistakes that were made there. At least casual gamers enjoyed Sims.

Re:really? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28624753)

Not sure how The Sims 'failed to deliver' when it became the best selling PC game of all time.

Perhaps you meant The Sims Online?

Re:really? (1)

HTH NE1 (675604) | more than 5 years ago | (#28626711)

Let's not forget the mistakes that were made there.

Did you not mean There [wikipedia.org] ?

Re:really? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28625641)

People still care about second life? Amazing.

I personally know at least 6 Handicapped people who have fun in their lives again because of this virtual world. Not to mention people who have zero happiness in their RL.
Don't be too quick to show sarcasm it does have it's good points.

Re:really? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28627653)

It's good to know they can now get some flying penises in their lives again.

Re:really? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28635293)

Everytime someone declares Secondlife dead, it stayes alive 5 more years.

Re:really? (1)

LethargicParasite (929016) | more than 5 years ago | (#28643435)

Everytime someone declares Secondlife dead, it stayes alive 5 more years.

Uh, non-stacking, I hope.

Not this.. (1)

powerslave12r (1389937) | more than 5 years ago | (#28623997)

I guess this means more and more people performing simple (that which does not need human judgment or intelligence) tasks will lose their jobs. This is akin to a war, where you make money selling weapons and ensure a comfortable future for yourself at the cost of others. Second Life and their creators will make money now, but everyone else loses. Pigs:1, Sheep:0.

Re:Not this.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28624145)

You also improve the efficiency of humanity as a whole. This is especially true in the future where these technologies will become more reliable; allowing people to work on more important matters. Won't you think of the children?

Re:Not this.. (1)

kalirion (728907) | more than 5 years ago | (#28624767)

Why not just become Amish? They don't go for any of that technology crap stealing hard-working people's jobs either.

Re:Not this.. (1)

orngjce223 (1505655) | more than 5 years ago | (#28631677)

MyCyberTwin, Second Life and their creators will make money now, but everyone else loses.

FTFY.

Seriously, though, MyCyberTwin is a business enterprise. I know, because I cruised past their website a while ago.

I for one welcome myself... (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28624019)

as my new CyberTwin overlord.

Re:I for one welcome myself... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28624519)

Does that mean you are the overlord of your CyberTwin or that the CyberTwin is the overlord?

Re:I for one welcome myself... (1)

The Archon V2.0 (782634) | more than 5 years ago | (#28625923)

Does that mean you are the overlord of your CyberTwin or that the CyberTwin is the overlord?

Maybe it depends who feels like overlording at any given time. In other words, maybe he's a switch.:)

Slashvertisement (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28624097)

How about linking to something which doesn't sound like a press release? ...and this sounds more like Eliza [wikipedia.org] than AI.

Re:Slashvertisement (4, Interesting)

JWSmythe (446288) | more than 5 years ago | (#28624575)

    Well, if you went to their web site, you'd find that it's another absolutely stupid scripted assistance program, that uses keywords to return specific answers. {sigh}

    Yup, a press release that snuck in as a tech story. Slashdot used to be so much better than this.

Re:Slashvertisement (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28625051)

The article and the company's own website has no specific technical information. Going to have to agree that it's just another chatterbot.

What's making it slightly interesting to people is that it has tools to easily customize its answers for individual clients, but that's it. Also, I doubt the article's claim of passing the Turing Test 67-95% of the time; the Turing Test requires a wide range of conversation topics and these things can only answer certain preprogrammed questions.

Re:Slashvertisement (1)

JWSmythe (446288) | more than 5 years ago | (#28625493)

    I went to their site, and followed the intro text as a line of conversation. The first answer was vague, and it couldn't give me any intelligent answers after that. Since it was a demo, and didn't have a clear business application, I didn't know what questions I should ask to get a real response back.

    The best it did was told me to log in, so I could create my own bot, and start programming it with what to say today. (oohh, wow.)

Re:Slashvertisement (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28626699)

From /applications/robotics -
"MyCyberTwin deployed live companion robots on a large media publisher, and 95% of the audience did not realise they were talking to a human. 8% of the chats went on for an hour or longer, and our average session with a companion robot is 32 minutes."

On second thought, from looking around their website, I realise that I must have the wrong place... or is this company just a joke? How could large scale corporations use this crap? In fact, from the demo on the web it only seemed to be another ALICE...

Re:Slashvertisement (1)

Phoenixlol (1549649) | more than 5 years ago | (#28628443)

And they're toting it as "an advanced artificial intelligence engine"... for shame

Re:Slashvertisement (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28624643)

Oh it is clearly not Eliza. And if you ask a CyberTwin it will make sure you understand that.

From chats with example MyCyberTwins:

George: Eliza is a computer therapist, it has nothing to do with MyCyberTwin though

Perfect Boyfriend: Eliza is a computer program that acts as a therapist, it has limited knowledge of day to day conversation and can only seem to answer questions about the visitor. Eliza is not a part of MyCyberTwin.

Why Hardware? (2, Insightful)

Mork29 (682855) | more than 5 years ago | (#28624331)

This story is in the hardware category, and I'm trying to understand why.... Even if the company is deploying the "cyber-twins" in a hardware solution, it's the software that's innovative here.

Re:Why Hardware? (1)

brkello (642429) | more than 5 years ago | (#28625041)

The software doesn't even sound innovative. Do we have a section for that? Idle maybe?

URL (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28626489)

If you care to have a play with this, try here: http://www.nab.com.au/wps/wcm/connect/nab/nab/home/personal_finance/4
Seems like a simple keyword searching script, nothing more. The story seems to be a press release, not anything technically innovative.

Does anyone actually play it? (3, Insightful)

Kebis (1396783) | more than 5 years ago | (#28626953)

I am always amazed at how often Second Life is mentioned in various news articles and web sites (and an episode of The Office), because I still have yet to find one person I know who actually plays it or has ever even tried it. Maybe Second Life is really big in the CNN breakroom or something.

Re:Does anyone actually play it? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28627371)

yes, and I make a small profit playing it, thanks.

Re:Does anyone actually play it? (1)

nevermore94 (789194) | more than 5 years ago | (#28637421)

I played it for several years, made over a grand in real money profit, and had a lot of fun doing it, but now I have a real life fiancee and a little daughter, so I have pretty much quit playing due to lack of free time, but I still miss the fun I had playing and creating things there sometimes.

Used widely in the art and academic communities (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28638803)

Quite a few Universities do remote learning with SL now, language learning is where I've seen the most development in this space (eg. learning English and Spanish classes). Also there has been a recent upswing in artist sponsorship with quite a few residency programs launching this year as well as a several large corporately funded efforts. Large companies like IBM, Cisco, and Sun have a very strong presences and use the space for cost reduction for remote meetings. A number of museums have also launched SL spaces to complement museum exhibits or expand the awareness of their holdings.

The U.S. Government has a large number of offices represented within the space, from science operations like NASA and JPL doing concept/prototyping work to the DOD doing virtual training exercises.

I'm even aware of one company that does some limited pre-on boarding work in SL by offering new employees the ability to tour a visual history of the business before they even get in the door on the first day.

Also, that's just what you see from the English speaking spaces with in SL. There are actually very significantly sized Australian, Brazilian, Japanese and German contingents within SL. I was most surprised at the shear number of South American banks and telecommunications companies with service offices I found the last time I looked into this myself last year.

While SL is lost on the general populace still, it is far from dead and is steadily growing globally.

Robot abuse (1)

Gizzmonic (412910) | more than 5 years ago | (#28627413)

A big part of the realism of CyberTwins is their ability to provide realistic, intelligent responses to human queries. If for example, a customer is using aggressive language or is abusing a CyberTwin, it can detect this and push back, like a real person.

Show me my account balance, robot slave!

I still say this is a Killer App (1)

serutan (259622) | more than 5 years ago | (#28627707)

For years I've been saying that when video phones get into widespread use someone smarter than me will create software that filters your image in real time to look like a spiffed up version of yourself, or any avatar you want. The avatar would faithfully reproduce your expressions and mouth movements as you talk. You could even enhance your voice if you wanted to. Lots of people wouldn't want to use a video phone because they would have to worry about how they look all the time. Realistic, realtime avatars would eliminate that adoption barrier.

Who in the world wants a robotic Clippy? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28627857)

Die you annoying paperclip, die!

Just narrow AI (1)

Quackers_McDuck (1367183) | more than 5 years ago | (#28630885)

When I saw this headline I was hoping it was about using virtual worlds to train an artificial general intelligence, like Ben Goertzel is focusing on with his "novamente" project http://www.kurzweilai.net/meme/frame.html?main=memelist.html?m=3%23710 [kurzweilai.net] . So far he's only implemented virtual dogs (well, he's done a lot more than that, but only really experiemented a lot with dogs, I think), but parrots are next up I believe.

As a Linden Lab customer service droid... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28632927)

Should I be worried? :P

Julia! (1)

Khelder (34398) | more than 5 years ago | (#28635777)

Julia, Julia, she's our guide,

She directs us far and wide.

If you're lost and can't find your way,

Julia's here to save the day!

- Julia [wikipedia.org] , Islandia [linnaean.org] 's robotic tour guide (c. 1990)

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