Chatbots Are Getting Lessons In Empathy From A Machine
Koko emulates human-like responses to make AI interactions more fluid and productive
Chatbots are not known for their sensitivity or their human-like responses: ask Siri or Alexa what to do if you’re stressed or depressed and they won’t lend much of a sympathetic ear. Koko, however, is a new service that could make bot interactions more beneficial to those who are suffering.
First crafted in 2014 by MIT’s Media Lab as a program that connected people with mental strife to others in similar situations, Koko is now creating new algorithms in order to better help its user base. Currently, it is being used to funnel requests to the most appropriate matches, though it often has conversations with the people until someone on the other side is available. The more conversations it monitors, the more the AI learned to replicate the specific language and tonal patterns that people use when discussing sensitive subjects.