Last Saturday, I served as one of the judges for the Alaska state-wide high school science symposium ASHSSS. There were excellent contributions from these young people. One talk was about a chatbot. A chatbot is basically a computer program that learns by questions and their answers and/or the sentences and the responses to them. The program stores the questions and answers or sentences and the corresponding responses. Now when you pose a question or say a sentence, the program compares your question or sentence to its data base. If the question or sentence is in the data base, it gives the stored answer or response. If there is no match in the data base, it looks for questions or sentences that have a maximum of matching words, ignores the rest, and then uses the answer or response that belongs to the so identified “match”. It is obvious that the larger the data base is, i.e. the more questions and answers or sentences and responses are stored, the better and more “realistic” the conversation with the computer becomes.
The presentation stuck in my mind as it reminded me of Star Trek and its androids that finally even learned to fall in love as they had been exposed to seeing people falling in love. Now as technology becomes better, and storage is becoming increasingly less of an issue (except for costs) such chat-bots come closer and closer to the Hollywood ideas of “human-like” robots.
The quality of chat-bots is typically tested by exposing humans to a chat and asking them whether they think they talked to a human or computer. When the answers and/or responses did not make much sense or were not meeting the usual patterns or expectations, the test persons answered they think they spoke to a computer.
But is this right? Assume the following happens to you. You ask someone “how are you doing today?” and the response is “Not great. I caught a cold and have a terrible headache and too much to do to take sick leave.” Then your response is “I hope you feel better soon.” The person responds “Forget the hope. It takes 10 days with and without doctor.” The next time you run into that person on a nice spring day. The person says “hi.” You say “Hi, I hope you have a nice spring” and the person answers “not really. The plow guy clogged the drainage of the utility corridor and now the melt-water cannot drain into the slough, and runs into my garage instead, and I have to clean up that idiot’s mess everyday.” The next time you meet this person, the person offers you a ride. You accept and hop in the car. The two of you stop at the red traffic lights. They turn green. The driver in the blue car in front of you obviously is distracted and does not react. You say “I guess that guy is not paying attention.” The person starts cursing “hey you blind fox. It is green. It will not get any greener. Drive. You don’t have a car to park on the crossing. What do you have your car for? Are you as blue as your car?” While these answers and responses of the person seem very unusual to you, and any English native speaker, this person may just follow their cultural response patterns translated into English. If the person does not have an accent, you will need to have very good knowledge of the person’s actual native language and the original cultural behavior patterns, to identify this person as a normally behaving non-native speaker speaking English rather than a weird person or a computer. Thus, my point is that one day it will be really hard to figure out to whom you are talking. Thus, Hollywood’s androids are not so unreal any more.
Now to what you came for. The OOTD. I wore my leopard cardigan under my cashmere V-neck sweater over my leather pencil skirt. To give further edge to the outfit I wore my Harley Davidson studded booties. Since it had gotten colder again I wore my boot topper for the commute. I like that they match my head leopard diamond jacket and band so nicely. The links lead you to other outfits with the mentioned items.
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Photos: G. Kramm
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