Microsoft Tay has been unleashed on 18-24 year olds in the US as part of a new study in research on conversational understanding.
We’ve all likely poked fun at an internet chatbot once or twice, but a new AI out of Redmond, named Microsoft Tay, has been unleashed on 18-24 year olds in the United States as part of a new study on conversational understanding.
Tay, which was constructed by the Microsoft Technology and Research and Bing teams as part of a new series of tests around the understanding of human conversation, forms a second version of a similar bot, Microsoft XiaoIce, which was unveiled in China in 2014. Read: This algorithm is learning to tweet like Donald Trump
While Microsoft publicly marketed XiaoIce as ‘Cortana’s little sister’, Tay doesn’t enjoy the same prominence. The chat bot, according to Microsoft, was constructed by “by mining relevant public data and by using AI and editorial developed by a staff including improvisational comedians.” The page further states that ‘anonymised public data’ is Tay’s primary source.
The chatbot is targeted towards 18-24 year olds, as that age group represents “the dominant users of mobile social chat services in the US”, or so its ‘About’ page says.
Users are able to select what information – if any – they wish to share with Tay, including their nickname, gender, favourite foods, zip code and relationship status. Should they so choose, a user can further delete submitted information by submitting a request via the bot’s contact form.
The chatbot also enjoys several social media accounts, most notably being found on Twitter through a verified account, @TayandYou. Read: Mark Zuckerberg aiming to build his own AI assistant
What are your thoughts on Microsoft Tay? Be sure to let us know if you have any amusing conversations with the chatbot, and let us know your thoughts in the comments below!
Follow Bryan Smith on Twitter: @bryansmithSA