Facebook’s Cyborg Virtual Assistant Is Learning from Its Trainers

Late last month a few hundred lucky users of Facebook’s mobile messaging app got an unusual new contact to talk with: M, a virtual assistant powered by a mixture of algorithms and human operators.That cyborg design makes M capable of handling much more complex requests than the mobile app assistants that Apple, Microsoft, and Google offer in their smartphone software. Siri, Cortana, and Google’s search app can interpret simple commands or factual queries, such as “What’s the weather forecast for London?” But they can’t field more complex questions such as “Where can I get a good burger in Chicago?” They can’t enter into back-and-forth conversation or book a hotel. M can do those things because the software hands off things it can’t do to human operators known as “trainers.” Sometimes…


Link to Full Article: Facebook’s Cyborg Virtual Assistant Is Learning from Its Trainers