Da Nang men’s chatbot used by Skype, Facebook Messenger

Created 16 June 2017
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Hekate AI, a chatbot created by Nguyen Van Minh Duc, 26, Pham Quoc Huy, 26, and Duong Van Phuoc Thien, 25, is the first of its kind in Vietnam.

A chatbot, also known as a talkbot, chatterbot, is a computer program which conducts a conversation via auditory or textual methods.

Duc said the men learned about chatbots at a Microsoft developer conference. It is a new type of app that uses artificial intelligence.

A chatbot is deployed under cloud computing with an intelligent processing unit installed on cloud infrastructure, while the communication unit is integrated into chat applications on smart internet connection devices or on websites. 

Thus, users can connect anywhere via different terminals such as computers, smart phones, smart TVs and smart clocks.

In 2016, Sumi, the team’s virtual character that first used chatbot technology on Skype, officially made its debut and attracted nearly 1 million conversations, mostly from youth. Users made requests via texts and the chatbot program replied in a natural way.

They decided to add their chatbot program to Facebook’s Messenger app. 

“I watched Facebook Conference 8 online and I was impressed by the new chatbot technology introduced by Mark Zuckerberg – doing shopping right on Messenger interface. This will be the new trend for startups,” Duc said.

“Young people aged 13-17 now enjoy interacting via instant messaging and one-to-one interaction such as shopping online, or searching for interactive items. So, we decided to create new features besides chatting,” he continued.

To date, Hekate Ai has more than 1 million users and 100,000 people in interaction with Sumi and 10 other virtual characters every day via Messenger. 

Encouraged by initial success, the team have developed a specific platform, called Hekate. “We try to help everybody approach artificial intelligence and create chatbots of their own like Sumi. There is no need to have deep knowledge about coding,” Duc explained. 

“On Hekate platform, users can create chatbots of their own and then practice and embed them into Messenger for use. The more the chatbots communicate, the smarter they will be,” Duc said.

At first, Hekate AI just targeted businesses, fashion shops and restaurants which use chatbot as a tool to give automatic answers to clients. 

However, with support from DNES, the Da Nang incubation program, they have suggested applying chatbot technology in local e-government to help promote Da Nang.

 

 

Source: Kham Pha - VietNamNet

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