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Smart IoT and soft AI

Milton, R; Hay, D; Gray, S; Buyuklieva, B; Hudson-Smith, A; (2018) Smart IoT and soft AI. In: Living in the Internet of Things: Cybersecurity of the IoT 2018. (pp. pp. 129-134). Institution of Engineering and Technology: London, United Kingdom. Green open access

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Soft artificial intelligence (AI) is defined as non-sentient AI designed to perform close to human level in one specific domain. This is in contrast to “Artificial General Intelligence” (AGI) which solves the problem for human level intelligence across all domains. Soft AI is a reality now in the new generation of smart Internet of Things devices like Amazon’s Alexa, Apple’s Siri or Microsoft’s Cortana, giving rise to concerns about privacy and how the technology is being used. This research is based around an experiment in “AI as a service” where fifteen chatbot agents using Google’s “Dialogflow” are deployed around the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park in London for the general public to interact with. The physical devices are 3D printed representations of creatures living in the park, designed to fit with the park’s biodiversity remit. Park visitors interact with the creatures via their mobile phones, engaging in a conversation where the creature offers to tell them a memory in exchange for one of their own, while warning them that anything they say might be repeated to others. The scope of the work presented here is as follows. After explaining the details of the deployment and three month study, the conversational data collected from visitors is then analysed. Following a review of the current literature, techniques for working with the unstructured natural language data are developed, leading to recommendations for the design of future conversational “chatbot” agents. The results show distinct patterns of conversation, from simple and direct “verb plus noun” commands to complex sentence structure. How users interact with the agents, given that they are conversing with a mechanism, is discussed and contrasted with the memories that they have agreed to share. The conclusion drawn from this work is that, while the current generation of devices only listen for commands from users, there is a danger that smart IoT devices in the future can be used as active information probes unless properly understood and regulated. We finish with observations on privacy and security based on our experiences here.

Type: Proceedings paper
Title: Smart IoT and soft AI
Event: Living in the Internet of Things: Cybersecurity of the IoT 2018
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
Publisher version: http://www.proceedings.com/39904.html
Language: English
Additional information: This paper is a postprint of a paper submitted to and accepted for publication in Living in the Internet of Things: Cybersecurity of the IoT 2018 and is subject to Institution of Engineering and Technology Copyright. The copy of record is available at the IET Digital Library
Keywords: chatbots, language, AI, disclosure, gnomes
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of the Built Environment
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of the Built Environment > Centre for Advanced Spatial Analysis
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10076675
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