Can a Siri-like chatbot help lonely seniors?


  • TECH
  • Monday, 26 Aug 2019

Zaiane with the chatbot he and his team are developing that can express and respond to emotions. — University of Alberta/TNS

It’s not quite the Joaquin Phoenix-Scarlett Johansson love story from 2013 romance Her, but researchers believe an artificial intelligence chatbot may help relieve human loneliness, particularly in seniors.

Computing scientist Osmar Zaiane of Canada's Alberta Machine Intelligence Institute envisions “a device that’s emotionally intelligent, where an elderly person can say ‘I’m tired’ or ‘It’s beautiful outside’, or tell a story about their day – and receive a response that carries on the conversation and keeps them engaged,” he said in a statement.

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