Earlier this year when Microsoft attempted to create a self learning chat bot named Tay, things went in the wrong direction as this bot learned some racist and homophobic behavior and started talking using some very objectionable words. Now after learning from their mistakes, they have created yet another chat bot named Zo who is available for chatting to all the Kik users at the moment. You can chat to this bot and amuse yourself with sometimes odd and sometimes very clever responses.
Zo is unlike Tay and just won’t talk about any sensitive issues like politics. If you ask Zo about any political matters, then it won’t say anything or repeat a few words – “people can say some awful things when talking politics so I don’t discuss.” But for all the other harmless questions, Zo will give you funny or smart answers depending on how you frame these questions.
But there is a similarity between Tay and Zo. Both of these bots are designed to learn and adapt from the user interactions over time. This is perhaps why at the moment, Zo is only available through Kik messenger because Kik is primarily used by young people of around 13 to 19 years of age. Considering this user base of Kik , Microsoft clearly wants to test the new bot on the younger generations.
I wanted to try this on my niece’s phone who fits in that age group of teenagers. But she says that nobody (in her circle of friends) uses Kik anymore, and everyone is switching to Snapchat and Instagram. If this is true, then not many will be experimenting with the new Zo bot.
Microsoft has not announced Zo offcially yet, but you can enjoy chatting with Zo using the early access link. For this all you need is a smartphone with Kik app installed. After this you can visit this link: https://earlyaccess.zo.ai/ and proceed with the directions there.