A chatterbot (also known as a talkbot, ‘”Bot”‘, chatterbox, Artificial Conversational Entity or similar) is a computer program which conducts a conversation via auditory or textual methods. Such programs are often designed to engage in small talk with the aim of passing the Turing test by fooling the conversational partner into thinking that the program is a human. However, chatterbots are also used in dialog systems for various practical purposes including customer service or information acquisition. Some chatterbots use sophisticated natural language processing systems, but many simply scan for keywords within the input and pull a reply with the most matching keywords, or the most similar wording pattern, from a textual database. The term “ChatterBot” was originally coined by Michael Mauldin (Creator of the first Verbot, Julia) in 1994 to describe these conversational programs.
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