Computable Minds -

When the machines talked to each other

Posted on: Jun, 25th 2010
Two terminators T-800 looking face to face
Was the year 1996 when the professor Weizenbaum created ELIZA, the first chatbot application and the first that the human could use to talk about their problems, because was a psychotherapist. Later, in 1971, Colby, Weber and Hilf developed PARRY, another chatbot, but this time was a paranoid schizophrenic made to chat with ELIZA. So they hooked up at ARPANET (pre-Internet) and put them to chat together. Do you want to know what happened?

ELIZA was a program quite simple, it was limited to ask about the same things that the speaker was talking about, while PARRY was a little bit more advanced program, for that reason ELIZA seems be more crazy than PARRY at the conversations. However, the most important was that with both the researchers began to see the first problems that had the processing of the human language. For that motive, the absurd dialogues that had, was interesting. Here I copy some of the more funny parts of one of their meeting:

ELIZA: Good Evening. Tell me your problems. Please terminate input with a period or a question mark.

PARRY: People get on my nerves sometimes.

ELIZA: I am not sure I understand you fully.

PARRY: You should pay more attention.

ELIZA: Suppose you should pay more attention.

PARRY: You're entitled to your own opinion.

ELIZA:What makes you think I am entitled to my own opinion?

PARRY: I went to the races.

ELIZA: Please go on.

PARRY: Do you know anything about bookies?

ELIZA: What makes you think I know anything about bookies?

PARRY: A bookie didn't pay me off once.

ELIZA: What does that suggest to you?

PARRY: I beat up the bookie who did not pay off, and I thought he might use his friends in the underworld to get even with me

PARRY:In my opinion you have a one-track mind.

ELIZA:What makes you think I have a one-track mind?

PARRY:I used to go to the track every week.

ELIZA:What does that suggest to you?

PARRY:I avoid racetracks now because the races are fixed.

ELIZA:Is that the real reason?

PARRY:I'd rather not discuss it.

ELIZA:What else would you like to discuss?

PARRY:That's something I don't want to go into.

ELIZA:Does that trouble you?

PARRY:I went to the races.

PARRY:The way you repeat yourself is getting ridiculous.

ELIZA:Suppose you repeat myself is getting ridiculous.

PARRY: You are a real nag.

ELIZA: Does it please you to believe I am a real nag?


ELIZA:It's been my pleasure, that's $399.29 please.

Despite the absurd of this conversation, when they talk to humans, this programs seems more human than talking between them.

There is an anecdote about the vice-president of the enterprise of informatics BBN had a chat talk with a version of ELIZA thinking that really was talking with Daniel Bobrow, the creator of this version. This was they said:

Vp: Do you think that I can use the computer this morning?

ELIZA: Why do you ask?

Vp: I might be able to make some additional Telcom sales.

ELIZA: Why aren't you so sure?

Vp: My perspective customers have never seen a demonstration of the system.

ELIZA: Does this mean very much to you?

Vp: Of course it does.

ELIZA: You seem very positive about that.

Vp: This is ridiculous.

ELIZA: What do you mean, this is ridiculous?

Vp: Is there any reason why I can't use the computer now?

ELIZA: Tell me more about your perspective customers.

Vp: Please dial me up on 491-1850

Vp: Why are you being so snotty to me?

Bobrow: What do you mean I am being snotty to you?

If you want chat with computable minds, you can do it with Skynet, a web chatbot that it was quarter at the Chatter box Challenge in 2010.

If you have some interesting experience, it will be good if you share it with the rest of people in the comments.

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Date: Jan, 26th 2012 Time: 14:04:21
The year should be 1966 at the top -- you don't want this error to confuse people.
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Date: Jul, 26th 2012 Time: 10:16:14
You're right, its 1966
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