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Microsoft's Millennial Twitter chatbot is both totes cringey and epically awesome

Everyone just stop right now and check out Microsoft’s new Tay chatbot, an “AI fam from the internet that’s got zero chill.” Guys, this is everything. OMG!

Slightly awkward? Yep. Probably a bit derogatory towards Millennials? Um, yeah. Hilarious and worth checking out for a good chuckle? Yeah, I’d say so. 

If you have an account on Kik, GroupMe, or Twitter, you can begin interacting with Tay right now. “Tay is designed to engage and entertain people where they connect with each other online through casual and playful conversation,” according to the Tay website. “The more you chat with Tay, the smarter she gets, so the experience can be more personalized for you.”

Why this matters: The AI chatbot was designed by Microsoft's Research and Bing teams, which will use its interactions to develop greater understanding of natural conversation for its user base, presumably those who think Microsoft’s Cortana is too old and staid to bother with. At the bottom of the page is the key phrase: “Tay is targeted at 18- to 24-year-olds in the U.S., the dominant users of mobile social chat services in the U.S.” Millennials, in other words.

Play with Tay

To interact with Tay via Twitter, all you need to do is tweet at the @TayandYou account. Eventually, she’ll ask you to interact with her via DM, but she’s much less responsive there. Keep the chats public, for now. 

Microsoft said that Tay represents an odd fusion of “AI and editorial developed by a staff including improvisational comedians,” and it shows. Tay definitely has personality—maybe too much personality. Ah, who are we kidding? This is awesome.

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IDG News Service

The IDG News Service is the world's leading daily source of global IT news, commentary and editorial resources. The News Service distributes content to IDG's more than 300 IT publications in more than 60 countries.

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