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The Loebner prize is one of the most important competitions in the world of Artificial Intelligence, and tonight the AISB, the society for the study of Artificial Intelligence and Simulation of Behavior, has officially announced the 4 finalists in the competition.
For a bit of history, the Loebner prize was founded by Hugh Loebner in 1991, a very kind and funny guy that I was proud to have become friends with through Steve Worswick via Facebook. The Loebner prize is the modern day version of the Turing Test, where A.I. from around the world battle it out for the award of most human like A.I., and try to convince a panel of human judges into believing that they themselves are human.
This tournament will be a very special event, sadly in December 2016, Hugh passed away, so this year's competition will hold a special place in many peoples hearts, as Hugh's legacy lives on. It was truly an honor to virtually meet Hugh, and also his wife, Elaine. His death was an event that shook the world of Artificial Intelligence, and it is great to see that his life's work will continue pushing the progression of the technology.
The unofficial results were posted to Chatbots.org on the 15th of August by Andrew Martin, Secretary of the AISB and responsible for the qualifying stage of the Loebner Prize. Shortly after the results were officially posted on the AISB website. It comes as no shock to me that Mitsuku Bot, developed by my friend Steve Worswick, and owned by Pandorabots, was first selection with 27 points, four points clear of 2nd place held by an A.I. called Rose.
The selection process involved 20 questions, and each A.I. that was submitted to the competition were asked these questions to determine the 4 finalists. You can view the final results here:
I mentioned it was not a surprise to me, as Steve, Pandorabots and Mitsuku have a very good history in the Loebner Prize, Mitsuku Bot has won the award for most human like A.I. twice, and each year she goes from strength to strength.
The interesting thing regarding Mitsuku is that she is built using a markup language known as A.I.M.L, Artificial Intelligence Markup Language, a programming method that I based my own markup language TAIML on, and spent a lot of my early years working on. As technology has advanced, many developers have moved towards Neural Networks, both generative (The A.I. creates its own response based on training data it has been exposed to), and Retrieval (Fairly similar to A.I.M.L but uses machine learning). The reason why I say this is interesting is that no Generative or Retrieval based A.I. that uses machine learning has ever come close to the results that Mitsuku achieves in these competitions, and in fact everyday life, however I do hope to open communication and suggest a project where we integrate these technologies based on Mitsuku's existing data.
I love to mention this, and in fact, Steve asked me to, a lot of the development on Mitsuku this year was done whilst listening to my DJ mixes, so for another year I am proud to have played a small part in the development of such an amazing A.I.
The finals of the Loebner Prize will be held at Bletchley Park on Saturday 16 September 2017, I have no doubt that on that I day I will be reporting how Mitsuku has won for the third time, but I guess I may be biased and we will all have to wait for the important day.
If you would like to read up more about Mitsuku and the Loebner Prize you can read Mitsuku Chatbot Wins Most Humanlike AI In Loebner Prize For A Second Time and 4chan /pol/ board hackers that corrupted Microsoft's Tay try their hand at Loebner prize winning Mitsuku Chatbot, and fail