AI Consultant, Free Natural Language Electronic Advice
FROM: Stein von Reusch
What NEED does this meet?
Many people are regularly in need of a good friend's advice, perhaps on economy, perhaps on stress at work, perhaps on depression issues, or, in cases of crises and abuse, of much more serious advice -- in which a friend might be one who could provide local phone numbers, even. Often, the best friends are those who can ask good questions. In principle, a machine equipped with natural language (artificial intelligence) can do so, and be humble in doing so. In this way, a person who may have lost almost everything except the capacity to enter internet for a few minutes can get perhaps the kind of wise calm tranquil influence that people around him or her may, for various reason, not be capable of. This can be a child, or a person in a such a state in which only very simple language would be felt as relevant. This is a tough need, yet internet could address it. This is something far more than the old program "Eliza", yet it serves to show the point: people felt they could confide. It must be driven idealistically so that no element of exploitation can enter.
What is the APPROACH?
The approach to fulfil this need would be to use a simple programming language (y4d at yoga4d.com) to make a socalled "neural network simulation", a learning type of program that could evolve responses based on initial training. This is something that many programmers have experimented with, and many machine-generated "chatbox" exists. However, the approach here would be to relate a tranquil kind of compassionate open attitude, through questions, to any person who are in need of such, and who would prefer to talk and type text and read a few lines rather than read a book of the same content-type. Numerous programming techniques exist for this, and they could be evolved, year by year; and I have reserved a free website for this (yoga5d.com), that could provide this service in a couple of ways. One way, for maximum privatisation, would involve a Java/Yoga4d client applet, which could even be run offline. The source will be available at SourceForge in good open source style (sourceforge.net/projects/wintuition-net is my place there, in which the yoga4d language is hosted). The other main operation modus, for greater speed of computation of responses, would be running it on the server as a Perl/Yoga4d server program. I am ready to do this programming now, since the language is there, in its basic form. It is all noncommercial and with an intent that is somewhat similar to buddhism etc (though I do not call myself such an -ist).
What are the BENEFITS to people?
Such a service could do what today's psychotherapists and others often have not time for: namely to talk in depth, to think slowly through things. The benefit would be greatest, I feel, if the program makes it clear that it is the user that must do the thinking, although the program can act as an "enzyme molecule" so as to trigger this thinking. If even only one person can be helped to sway away from, say, violent paths of action, towards compassionate and dialogical forms of action, it would have proven its validity. Yet there is no reason why it cannot, if it gets popular, help hundreds of thousands; and if so, and given open source validity of the program, it may inspire lots of more such help centers.
What is the COMPETITION?
If there are any similar services, I have yet to discover them: Though most who have capacity for AI programming has used it (confer the program Elbot.com) to just show off how clever it can answer, rather than actually provide generous wise assistance to think through things dialogically. In short, no competition at present.
What BUDGET & LOGISTICS are required?
Just programming time. If it gets popular, more servers are needed; but at that time, it would have proven itself so much that it would be a rather easy match to explain why it must be supported by cash from idealistic foundations worldwide.
Comment from the author of this proposal: Inspired by making this proposal explicit and public, I have made a prototype running on www.yoga5d.com, in which I suggest the term "Virtual Compassion". Please try it. I will develop it further and further and would like funding to spend much time on it, so it can be REAL virtual compassion, eventually.
Posted by: Stein von Reusch at Nov 3, 2003 11:34:54 PM
Another comment from the author: After several weeks of run, I have got comments from several users, who have played with, tested, and tried the chat engine on some personal issues, more or less for fun. The most happy responses came from users of great writing capacity, used to handling intellectual themes. I have released the tiny bit of source code for this at www.wintuition.net/downloads/, inside the ebook 'Yoga4d for Anarchists', and, to sum it up, this is something that I simply must make a lot more out of. The prototype has such a flavour of fun, despite its randomness, that I will not take it away, but rather develop more and more sensitive and less repetitive, and less intellectually demanding, chat engines with empathy and healing as overall or basic intent. Gradually, it will be more Artificial Intelligence and less dice-tossing from a vast set of fixed responses; I am getting into Neural Network Simulations. Anyone care to join up? Please contact me through email address given at www.yoga5d.com. Resources are also strongly requested, as I am giving myself full time to my own programming and writing projects!!! Thanks.
Posted by: Stein von Reusch at Dec 9, 2003 4:08:31 AM
Yet another comment from author of this proposal: The prototype phase has been concluded with some success, and the ideas and inspirations have now been taken into Triaversux (see www.yoga4d.com).
Posted by: Stein von Reusch at Jan 22, 2004 10:51:41 PM
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Whatever the reference to 'Poker party' means above ;) it has nothing to with the proposal, and I don't know who has added it.
This is another comment by the author of this proposal, Stein von Reusch, by the way.
I wanted to say that after a period of not working on this proposal, I am again working on it, and it presently seems that I will publish the result of this work at
where the Intelligent Assistor in YOGA4d programming language is ready, in a Java-compatible port, within something like one or two month. (This was posted in April 7th, 2005). I will check for further comments, advice, criticism (hopefully perceptive) etc.
Posted by: Stein von Reusch at Apr 7, 2005 6:02:58 PM
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