In 1989, the author put a chatbot on the Internet, whose conversations can be seen, depending on our definitions, as having "passed the Turing Test".For reasons which will be explained below, this is the first time this event has been properly written up.This means the therapist does not have to engage in any detail with the actual content of the patient's problems. This is obviously ideal for a computer program, which can attempt to carry on a conversation without having to understand anything the human says at all.Weizenbaum's trick remains one of the classic tricks for building a chatbot.Eliza "simulates" (or perhaps parodies) a Rogerian psychotherapist (i.e.a practitioner of the non-directive therapy of Carl Rogers), who has a conversation with a patient by appearing sympathetic, asking bland questions, and asking the patient to clarify what he just said, or discuss how he feels about it.
This chatbot succeeded due to profanity, relentless aggression, prurient queries about the user, and implying that they were a liar when they responsed. Most chatbots exist in an environment where people expect to find some bots among the humans. It seems to have been the first (a) AI real-time chat program, which (b) had the element of surprise, and (c) was on the Internet.The original Eliza was meant to be sympathetic to the human.We conclude with some speculation that the future of all of AI is on the Internet, and a description of the "World-Wide-Mind" project that aims to bring this about.Keywords - chatbot, Turing Test, Eliza, Internet, chat, BITNET, CHATDISC.
This paper is an explanation of a historical event, but it has implications for the future of Turing Test experiments on the Internet, and indeed for the future of AI in general on the Internet.In 1987, when I was an undergraduate in Computer Science at University College Dublin (UCD), Ireland, I wrote in LISP a version of Weizenbaum's classic "Eliza" chat program .