Poll

Do you prefer online or offline chatbots or assistants et al

I prefer online apps
0 (0%)
I prefer online apps but with some measure of security (hah !)
1 (16.7%)
I prefer offline apps
4 (66.7%)
I have no preference
0 (0%)
A combination is okay
1 (16.7%)

Total Members Voted: 6

Online or Offline ? That Is The Question

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Freddy

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Online or Offline ? That Is The Question
« on: June 22, 2017, 02:41:30 am »
Art and myself have been talking at times about this issue. My current interest in the question relates to my ElfScript chatbot thingy.

Current trends seem to point to everything being online and connected, the internet of things and all that jazz.

There are obvious disadvantages to online dependant bots and services that run and store data/information online. But the net is a gold mine too.

So are you bothered by any of this, what do you prefer ? Comments welcome to help discuss your thoughts.

Thanks :)

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WriterOfMinds

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Re: Online or Offline ? That Is The Question
« Reply #1 on: June 22, 2017, 04:19:34 am »
If we're talking about a personal assistant that might store sensitive information of mine ... offline's probably better.  I wouldn't mind if it accessed the internet to help answer questions and so forth, but I'd prefer that it store my information locally.  And it should retain its basic functionality without an internet connection.

I'm the type of person who likes to (for example) buy video games on GOG so I can make a backup copy of the installer and have it in my possession permanently, as opposed to just storing it in the cloud. I don't make the assumption that a service provider and their servers are going to be around forever, and if they do go offline/out of business, I want to keep my stuff.

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infurl

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Re: Online or Offline ? That Is The Question
« Reply #2 on: June 22, 2017, 06:35:10 am »
What about apps that can work both online and offline? Those are my preference. I can think of several non-chat apps which cache data for use offline whenever they are online e.g. Maps and GMail. Imagine a chat app which could remember questions that it couldn't answer while it was offline, but could have another crack at them when it got back online.

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Zero

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Re: Online or Offline ? That Is The Question
« Reply #3 on: June 22, 2017, 07:31:06 am »
Hi Freddy,

I use only apps that are able to work offline, because most of them use a centralized topology.

What I really like is peer2peer tech. I know it's far more challenging for devs, but it's so sexy. I like it when data spreads organically through an ad hoc network.

:)

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Art

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Re: Online or Offline ? That Is The Question
« Reply #4 on: June 22, 2017, 03:05:44 pm »
In my (perhaps twisted / skewed) way of thinking, a Chatbot should CHAT...conversational exchanges, pleasantries, trivial tidbits, jokes and some philosophical viewpoints, etc. A Chatbot shouldn't need to know everything about everything. That is what the Assistants are for.

An Assistant, on the other hand, should ASSIST...be a helpful companion that requires a considerable amount of online queries, geo-locations, schedules, traffic, events, ordering, payments, tracking items, reservations, weather, travel arrangements, meetings, etc. These Assistants are also expected to perform translations of languages as needed and a variety of math and encyclopedic knowledge / access.

While I am very weary and untrusting of this "cloud" structure, I realize that a part of it will be necessary in my life as I advance with each day. For my Chatbot, I prefer it to be local but would like it to be able to do a quick check online if something absolutely required it. My data is my data and is not up for grabs on some remote, unknown server. Cake and eat it too? Perhaps but a little paranoia is healthy...unless they really are out to get you!!  :o ;)
In the world of AI, it's the thought that counts!

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Don Patrick

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Re: Online or Offline ? That Is The Question
« Reply #5 on: June 22, 2017, 08:03:34 pm »
I'd prefer an offline virtual assistant who only goes online to check on the news. The first because I'd use it for local things, files and purposes of some sensitivity. The second because I find it difficult to talk with a bot if it doesn't have anything new to talk about. For that, it would inevitably need to read news of some sort, and distil bits of it that would interest me.
Personal project: NLP -> learning -> knowledge -> logical inference -> A.I.

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ivan.moony

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Re: Online or Offline ? That Is The Question
« Reply #6 on: June 22, 2017, 10:57:21 pm »
I'd prefer something a bit different. I'd like to have my own cloud set up on my own server.
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Art

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Re: Online or Offline ? That Is The Question
« Reply #7 on: June 23, 2017, 03:10:42 am »
You could always buy your own domain and desired space, then move all your pertinent files to that location or you could just buy a decent External / Internal hard drive and store your files there to access as needed, aside from your ordinary computer files. Your control of that paid for storage is limited to your ability to remain as a paying customer. One would also hope that your assigned security to those files would not nor could not be circumvented by the owner of those domain servers. Kind of like renting a house but the landlord still has a master key.

You could access them remotely with something like TeamViewer or any similar / better programs.

I tend to fall into the same groove as Patrick. Offline except when or as needed to extract some useful info that I didn't have on my local drives / servers.

We all have different views but it does seem that a fair amount of folks do not completely trust their data to some remote servers.
In the world of AI, it's the thought that counts!

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Freddy

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Re: Online or Offline ? That Is The Question
« Reply #8 on: June 23, 2017, 04:59:29 am »
Thanks for all the replies. It's interesting, I thought more people would be okay with online things than there are.

I do agree with the notion that private or important things are probably best kept offline. I can see an assistant requiring this kind of attention more than a bot that simply chats perhaps.

My ElfScript interpreter is purely online at this time, but I'm talking with Art about how we can use it on a local machine running on a LAMP stack with PHP/MYSQL etc. It's quite easy to do as that's all I am doing now as I develop it. There's the option of making a little WIndows App to connect to a local server or I could just do it all in the browser (which is my preference).

I'd prefer something a bit different. I'd like to have my own cloud set up on my own server.

Yes same here and probably the direction I will go for the most part, at least to start with.

What about apps that can work both online and offline? Those are my preference. I can think of several non-chat apps which cache data for use offline whenever they are online e.g. Maps and GMail. Imagine a chat app which could remember questions that it couldn't answer while it was offline, but could have another crack at them when it got back online.

That's nice, yes worth some thought, thanks. Some of my bot's functions use online services already, like looking up things on Wordnik and summarising Wikipedia pages. This seems safe ground for online activities.

I'd prefer an offline virtual assistant who only goes online to check on the news. The first because I'd use it for local things, files and purposes of some sensitivity. The second because I find it difficult to talk with a bot if it doesn't have anything new to talk about. For that, it would inevitably need to read news of some sort, and distil bits of it that would interest me.

That gives me ideas for using RSS feeds to find news. Thanks.

If we're talking about a personal assistant that might store sensitive information of mine ... offline's probably better.  I wouldn't mind if it accessed the internet to help answer questions and so forth, but I'd prefer that it store my information locally.  And it should retain its basic functionality without an internet connection.

I'm the type of person who likes to (for example) buy video games on GOG so I can make a backup copy of the installer and have it in my possession permanently, as opposed to just storing it in the cloud. I don't make the assumption that a service provider and their servers are going to be around forever, and if they do go offline/out of business, I want to keep my stuff.

For the most part my bot will still be able to chat offline if the user has a local server. There are learning routines that means that you can script it to store things that it has previously looked up and it will repeat them if asked again.

Hi Freddy,

I use only apps that are able to work offline, because most of them use a centralized topology.

What I really like is peer2peer tech. I know it's far more challenging for devs, but it's so sexy. I like it when data spreads organically through an ad hoc network.

:)

The way my interpreter works is that it learns per user. But at some point I will experiment with global learning - taking things from all users - but we already know where that usually leads  :o

Thanks again everyone :)


 


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