A fully autonomous computer system has been developed that can take part in live debates with people. The findings hint at a future in which artificial intelligence can help humans to formulate and make sense of complex arguments.
Project Debater is, first and foremost, a tremendous engineering feat. It brings together new approaches for harvesting and interpreting argumentatively relevant material from text with methods for repairing sentence syntax (which enable the system to redeploy extracted sentence fragments when presenting its arguments; the role of their syntax-repair technology is modestly underplayed by the authors).
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