Who am I?
My name is Gal Friedman, and many will recognise me from the Israeli television industry which I have been working in for more than 20 years as a scriptwriter, editor and director of TV shows. I have earned myself a name in Israel and some of the TV series I’ve created, have been widely successful, continued for several seasons and have been distributed and aired in many countries around the world. In addition, I have written and edited in game shows such as the Wheel of Fortune, Hollywood Squares, The Pyramid and I’ve directed reality TV shows.
How did I get to the world of the bots?
As part of my start up (which happens to be my second one) I’m involved in, I've created an automatic system that integrated into chats between users, and takes an active participant in the conversation. The system included an analysis of mental and psychological processes, that were then formatted into excel sheets and flow charts. Gradually, I realised that without even meaning to, I am creating a prototype bot which is capable of having a warm and humanly interaction with people, which is from where I developed my interest in the field of chatbot.
I am passionate and excited about this field. It seems that we are on the verge of a new era, where artificial intelligence communicates with humans daily. Alas, we are still in the beginning stages, and until now I haven’t encountered a single bot that is valuable and or that has minimal standards of effectivity.
A deficiency in the bot industry
I’ve also noticed a serious structural deficiency within this field. Whilst a bot is supposed to simulate a conversation with a human, those who work in this field and design the interaction, are usually people who don’t have experience or professional understanding, when it comes to human beings, discourses, dialogues, or psychological processes.
Even if some companies hire expert consultants for psychology or pragmatics here and there, these people are originally coming from the academy. It means they might be able to analyse existing phenomenon in an efficient way, but they don’t really know how to invent and create a flowing human conversation from scratch. To design an efficient bot there is a need to be able to create scenarios, use subtext, create a dialogue and portray a character, things that a scriptwriters deal with on a daily basis.
I have gone through many articles, had hands on testing of many bots, took a few programming courses (not to program myself, but in order to gain insight into the topic) and I even “played around” designing simple bots through interfaces such as: API.AI and the like. This field is wide and is improving every day and I long to be a part of the evolution that is to come.
About the blog
In the blog, I write about topics and ideas that I find interesting, using my own professional perspective – as someone who has considerable experience in designing conversation architectures, that are based on a deep understanding of the user’s intention which are not only verbal. I try to write my articles in a simple and friendly manner, so there is no need for technical knowledge of bots or programming. I will be happy to get feedback or constructive criticism.