‘Chatbot’ and ‘Bot’ seem to be terms that are used interchangeably, but what is the difference? With the next generation of predictive intelligence becoming ever more prevalent in businesses, and having a growing impact on society, we’re taking a look at how these AI assistants are increasing business performance and efficiency, as well as assisting with personal organisation.

A chatbot is a system that has been taught, through deep learning, to understand language and context in order to interact with a human user to solve a problem or answer a question. A bot, on the other hand is simply an application that performs an automated task, such as setting an alarm, or telling you the weather when you request the information. Whilst bots are able to perform tasks, they do not have the understanding and capabilities of natural language processing in the way that chatbots do. The difference here is their ability to learn.

Chatbots and virtual assistants have a deeper intelligence than a simple bot - where the bot follows the script, the chatbot and AI assistant are able to learn and understand context as well as instruction.

At the AI Assistant Summit in London this September 21-22, we will hear from the likes of Sage, Differ, Haptik, Cisco, SPIXII and many more, who will present their most recent breakthroughs and research in AI assistants.

In day-to-day life, we come across chatbots online, often through agents that provide practical support, such as information, searching for products and booking events. Ann Hsu, Assistant Professor at University of London is currently working to push the boundaries of artificial conversational potential. When conversing with a human there is a level of empathy and emotion that is often absent in chatbots, and Anne will discuss her research in the automation of natural language conversations that can form more meaningful, emotional connections with the user. By conversing in this manner, systems can provide behaviour change support by delivering in-the-moment help and elevating user self-awareness, and helping users to feel more connected to the customer service provider.

To hear more from Anne and other industry professionals working with AI assistants, register for the AI Assistant Summit. At the Summit you will have the opportunity to network with leading minds in AI and hear about the most recent breakthroughs in chatbots, as well as listening to presentations on at the Deep Learning Summit, running alongside the event.

Whilst the aim of chatbots is to increase efficiency, their performance is only as good as the training that goes into them. Chatbots need to be pre-trained, analysed, trained, measured and continuously taught new information. Whilst this may seem high maintenance, once the AI assistant is put into practice, the results pay off. Differ, a company ‘on a mission to provide personalised follow up for every student in the world’ are working to create a messaging platform to connect students with their classmates, project groups, and a ‘goddam robot’ all in one place. At the AI Assistant Summit, their Chatbot Lead Developer, Gregor Jarisch will discuss the practicalities and applications of chatbots. There are many prerequisites of building these assistants from prioritising what’s important to your business, to designing a personality and developing reusable components for building many chatbots.

Join us for more insights on AI Assistants and their practical applications at the AI Assistant Summit in London this September 21-22.

Can’t make it to London?

Our next AI Assistant Summit is taking place in San Francisco next January 25-26, and we currently have a Summer Special Promotion running: register for any Summit in 2018 and receive a 25% discount using the code SUMMER (offer excludes dinners and is available only at the time of purchase up until August 31st).