3 min read

Chatbots are remarkably changing the way customer service is provided in a variety of industries. For every organization, customer satisfaction plays a very important role, thus they expect business to be reachable any time and respond to their queries 24*7. With growing artificial intelligence advances in smart devices and IoT, chatbots are becoming a necessity for communicating with customers in real time.

There are many existing vendors such as Google, Microsoft, Amazon, and IBM with the required models and services to build conversational interfaces for the applications and devices. But the chatbot industry is evolving and even minor improvements in the UI, or the algorithms that work behind the scenes or the data they use to get trained, can mean a major win. With complete backing by the Facebook team, we can expect Wit. ai creating new simplified ways to ease speech recognition and voice interface for developers.  Wit. ai has an excellent support for NLP making it one of the popular bot frameworks in the market. The key to chatbot success is to pursue continuous learning that enables them to leverage relevant data in order to connect with clearly defined customers, this what makes Wit.ai extra special.

What is Wit.ai?

Wit.ai is an open and extensible NLP engine for developers, acquired by Facebook, which allows you to build conversational applications and devices that you can talk or text to. It provides an easy interface and quick learning APIs to understand human communication from every interaction and helps to parse the complex message (which can be either voice or text) into structured data. It also helps you with predicting the forthcoming set of events based on the learning from the gathered data.

Why Wit.ai

  • It is one of the most powerful APIs used to understand natural language
  • It is a free SaaS platform that provides services for developers to build a chatbot for their app or device.
  • It has story support thus allowing you to visualize the user experience.
  • A new built-in support NLP integration with the Page inbox allows the page admins to create a Wit app with ease. Further by using the anonymized samples from past messages, the bot provides automate responses to the most common requests asked.
  • You can create efficient and powerful text or voice based conversational bots that humans can chat with.
  • In addition to business bots, these APIs can be used to build hands-free voice interfaces for mobile phones, wearable devices, home automation products and more.
  • It can be used in platforms that learn new commands semantically to those input by the developer.
  • It provides a developer GUI which includes a visual representation of the conversation flows, business logic invocations, context variables, jumps, and branching logic.
  • Programming language and integration support – Node.js client, Python client, Ruby client, and HTTP API.

Challenges in Wit.ai

  • Wit.ai doesn’t support third-party integration tools.
  • Wit.ai has no required slot/parameter feature. Thus you will have to invoke business logic every time there is an interaction with the user in order to gather any missing information not spoken by the user.
  • Training the engine can take some time based on the task performed.
  • When the number of stories increases, Wit engine becomes slower.

However, existing Wit.ai adoption looks very promising, with more than 160,000 members in the community contributing on GitHub. In order to have a  complete coverage of tutorials, documentation and client support APIs you can visit the Github page to see a list of repositories.

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