According to Google Brain’s research team, they have good progress in developing an AI-powered chatbot which is way smarter and more natural in conversation than Siri, Alexa, and other digital assistants. The report on the project was published on e-print repository arXiv earlier this week.

The said AI project is called Meena. It is a neural network with 2.6 billion parameters trained on 40 billion words mined from Twitter and Facebook.

The developers claim that instead of picking up keywords and then giving scripted responses (like Alexa and Siri do), Meena’s design allows it to be contextually aware of the ongoing conversation as a whole. This means that this new algorithm is supposedly capable of following several turns and twists in conversation.

In order to compare Meena’s conversational abilities with those demonstrated by other chatbots, the team of developers coined a special metric called Sensibleness and Specificity Average (SSA). Not surprisingly, Meena by far outscored all its competitors gaining 79 percent rating in this new metric (given that humans score around 86 percent on average).

Though the timeline for the official release remains unclear, Google is unlikely to postpone it for too long, given the growing market demand for digital assistants.
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