From the editor
Sometimes you just have to rely on your writers and trust them when they send you an idea. As was the case when one of our regular contributors, Matt Suddain, emailed from London, wondering if I’d be keen on him interviewing a chatbot called Mitsuku. “Sure,” I wrote back, “even though I’m not really sure what a chatbot is …” Turns out that it’s a machine you can communicate with. If you have an iPhone, you’ll be familiar with Siri – and there are more and more of them populating our world every day. You know when you go to on to a website to try and work out why your latest package hasn’t arrived, and an instant-message screen pops up to sort it out? Turns out you aren’t talking to a real person after all, but a chatbot. (I had no idea either.) Anyway, Mitsuku is the Rolls-Royce of chatbots, a three-time winner of the Loebner Prize (the annual award for the most lifelike chatbot). Matt has interviewed her, and it’s one of the funnier things I’ve read in a long time, so I hope you like it too.