An Introduction to Chatbots

According to the existing Chatbots  Alexa , Cortana , Siri , Google Home it’s a obvious there is a demand for chatbots. In the past the chatbot is a hallow technology due to limited functionality. Now with the advancement in computer technology chatbots are practical in everyday use.  The below figure shows what exactly the chatbot is

Chatbots 1 (i2tutorials)

From the above figure we can conclude that if you have any problem with the particular product you can contact the customer support and they ask the problem what you have and they will give a solution.

 

But now replace a person with a computer program , the program being an on demand of question and answer application that is called chatbot.

Chatbots 2 (i2tutorials)

Designing chatbots are very quite complex since you’re dealing with intensive computing power, huge or immense datasets, and ambiguity of natural language.  However, we can devide the chatbots into two types. They are

1. Rule based chatbots.

2. AI based chatbots.

 

Rule Based Chatbots:

          In  this Rule based Chatbots , A Chatbot answer questions based on a some series of rules. These rules are predefined by the developer or depending on user’s actions.

 

The Rule-based makes developing chatbots simpler as you only need to work in a very limited context.  However, this simplicity also prevent chatbots from getting smarter.

Take the image below as an example.

Chatbots 3 (i2tutorials)

From the image, the chatbot is geared towards helping users to shop on an e-commerce website.  When the user go to the chatbot, the bot will first greet the user.  Usually it is a simple “hello.”

While the options aren’t limited to the ones shown above, the user can ask to place items into their shopping cart, determine whether an item is in stock, and understanding the refund policy.

 

Once the user types in a command, the chatbot will perform various actions depending on the task.  The heavy lifting is done in the background and will notify the user once the action has completed.  The user can either follow up with additional commands or just end the conversation.

However, the chatbot cannot handle tasks outside its domain like tracking items for delivery or buying tickets for the movie theater near you.

 

AI-based:

In this Ai chatbots we can use the machine learning model to train our chatbot to handle the user inputs. sometimes these Ai based chatbots are using a deep learning model to recognize the text from the speech to provide ease of communication to the user.

Unlike Rule based , you only give the training data to the model amd the model will be fitted to the dataset and this flexibility allows the chatbot to handle the complex sentences also. However using deep learning is complex , and harder to fine-tune the model  because of computing power , huge datasets.

While we haven’t seen general AI, we have definitely seen more powerful chatbots taking hold in our daily lives.  In fact, you can find many blog posts on how to build your own chatbot.  It wouldn’t be surprising if chatbots became very  human-like in a few years.  Now, whether or not you’ll talk to chatbots more than humans is a discussion for another day.