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Bots for the greater good: 6 chatbots making the world a better place

A chatbot (also known as a talkbot, chatterbot, Bot, chatterbox, Artificial Conversational Entity) is a computer program which conducts a conversation via auditory or textual methods. – Wiki

1. DoNotPay: Get free legal help in under 30 seconds

DoNotPay started out as a impudent service to help drivers get out of parking tickets. Stanford student Joshua Browder became more interested in bots after the online tool automatically challenged over 160,000 of them. People began contacting him asking for help with other legal issues relating to evictions, bankruptcies, and repossessions, so he decided to expand the capabilities of the bot to help homeless people.

source: DoNotPay

Since his success with DoNotPay, Browder, dubbed the ‘Robin Hood of the Internet’ by the BBC, has expanded it to give free legal aid to refugees seeking asylum in the US, Canada and UK.

2. Sayfe Space: Anonymously connecting refugees with help

Legal help isn’t the only thing that refugees need when they land in a Western country. They must contend with the stresses of integrating with a new culture, while dealing with the trauma of what they have experienced.

Sayfe Space is a mobile app containing an IBM Watson-powered chatbot. It uses natural language processing to assess and create a profile of a user’s mental state. It then uses this profile to match them with a live human being who can provide extra support.

source: SayFe Space

 

3. U-Report: Your voice matters

Across the world, young people are concerned about a variety of issues, ranging from climate change to the economy. Unicef created its own bot, U-Report, to give them a voice. The bot, available via Twitter and Facebook Messenger, polls its followers (called ‘U-Reporters’) on a range of topics. The idea is to gather opinion and experiences from these young participants, who now number over three million, and use them to help influence public policy.

source: U-Report

U-Report regularly sends out polls on a variety of issues, and assesses the results based on demographic data provided by U-Reporters when they sign up.

4. Quitxt: Helping users quit smoking

It is 2017, and despite smoking bans and punitive taxes, people still continue to light up. Could a chatbot help people to quit smoking? Dr. Amelie G. Ramirez of the University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio’s Institute for Health Promotion Research hopes so. She created Quitxt, an SMS-based quitbot designed to help addicted puffers deal with their cravings.

source: Quitxt

In addition to encouraging words, the bot also provides tips for managing stress and building a support network. Participants can expect links to mobile webpages designed to help people give up smoking.

5. MeditateBot: Creating a daily meditation habit

While some bots exist to help you stop a habit, others want to help you start one. Entrepreneur Eric Rems created MeditateBot as a Facebook Messenger tool to help him remember to meditate. Meditation is a proven health technique, and helps practitioners to remain mindful throughout the day, reducing stress and conflict.

source: MeditateBot

Over 25,000 users have been busy chilling out and improving their mental health using the chatbot, so he must be doing something right.

6. MSSG Voting Bot: Getting people to their voting locations

One organization has proven that technology can have a positive effect on democracy. Digital marketing firm @Mssg created a Facebook Messenger bot for the Connecticut House Democratic Campaign Committee that enabled voters to find their voting location quickly and easily.

source: MSSG

 

The possibilities are endless. What type of chatbot can you build?

Let us know too! Till then, stick with us and subscribe to get the latest tech news and stuff right at the comfort of your fingertips! Peace!

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Written by Manish Rath

Android Developer. Tech Savvy. Opened a Pentium 4 when I was 8. Follow me on twitter @Manishrath. Peace!

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