Register for Build-A-Bot 2020
books could converse with you,
or tablets tell you which interesting videos to watch,
or diaries tell stories about your interesting life moments.
Would you want to talk to them?
What if you could create your own chatbot? Would you create a bot that can diagnose an illness, encourage healthy living or tell inspirational stories or jokes? This is where your creativity can be used to help humanity.
Chatbots for Everyone
Build-A-Bot aims to enable everyone, regardless of age and background, build their own chatbots. It is a bootcamp + competition program where you can learn and develop fun and meaningful chatbots to help humanity.
No previous programming experience is required. Imagination and ingenuity are mandatory. :)
What is a Chatbot?
A chatbot is a computer program that helps us have a conversation with data. Chatbots help people deliver information or content in a simple, fun and interactive way.
Good chatbots focus on a single theme or "micro-topic". Here are some simple chatbot examples:
What You Will Learn
The Build-A-Bot 2020 program is designed to be:
- Self paced and bite sized. We've prepared 6 intensive lessons focussed on getting you to build chatbots. We also provide a forum for you to ask questions and interact with other bot creators.
- Experience based learning Each lesson ends with a "hack" challenge for you to amend or improve an already working chatbot. We start with simple bots but gradually work our way to more advanced techniques.
Each lesson builds on the previous one with more skills and techniques so you can design your bot to become more powerful and interactive. You can go as far as your imagination takes you!
Your bot grows as your knowledge grows - we hope your bots will be a creative expression of topics that are close to you.
PS: Even if you are an experienced programmer, Build-A-Bot 2020 will have something interesting in it for you. This programme is simple enough for children, but it's also something advanced programmers can excel in and have fun. We say that as experienced programmers ourselves. :)
Through this programme, you learn computational thinking which is learning how to break down a problem into smaller pieces to come up with a solution. This is a valuable skill when you tackle real-life challenges.
Creative Thinking Skills
Building your own chatbot is a fun and creative process. Every part of your bot - the user interface (UI), interactions and storyboard have to be customized. This requires thinking about the bot's intended audience and making the interaction engaging to its users. Our hope is that you end up enjoying coding!
The "hack" sessions are fun activities that encourages you to come up with your own designs. For kids, this helps them gain a sense of confidence seeing their work come to life and being used by others.
We've seen adults overcome their "computing phobia" too, since we break things down into their simplest form. Easy to understand and apply.
Free for Kids
We understand this is a challenging period economically for families. We have made this programme free of charge for kids 16 yrs and below.
Your Build-A-Bot Journey
1. Virtual Bootcamp
18 May launch (self-paced learning)
6 virtual sessions with mentorship on building chatbots.
2. Chatbot Development
20 - 31 May
Participants develop their chatbots. ai4impact experts provide online mentorship.
Each team has to submit their bot along with a 5-minute video pitch to ai4impact by 31 May 2020.
1 - 6 June
We open access for public to interact with your chatbots and upvote if they like it (until and including 6th June 2020).
The top 3 teams with the highest number of votes will be crowned Build-A-Bot 2020 champions.
Your mission - should you choose to accept it - is to build a chatbot that:
- Helps your friends, families, neighbours solve simple daily challenges.
- Teaches people something you are good at, in a creative way.
- Brings positivity & encouragement to the world, to make everyone happy during these turbulent times.
- The top 3 teams will be presented with certificates and Build-A-Bot 2020 championship medals.
- All top 10 teams will be featured in Build-A-Bot Hall of Fame and receive custom "I'm a Bot Builder" T-Shirts.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: I have no knowledge about programming. Can I still participate? Yes! Our chatbot bootcamp is accessible to non-programmers. This competition emphasizes your creativity in developing a useful chatbot.
Q: Do I have to setup / install anything for the competition? No. Everything will be accessible through your internet browser (Firefox or Chrome).
Q: Where is the competition held? On the Internet :)
Q: How do I win the competition? The chatbot with the highest number of upvotes from public will win the competition. However, ai4impact reserves the right to disqualify any bot that promotes negativity.
Q: What is the objective of Build-A-Bot 2020? We want you to experience the joy (and frustrations!) of building your own chatbot. While doing so, we want you to build something to help others and bring positivity to the world. Actions speak louder than words! Irony intended.
Q: Can I just join the bootcamp and not the competition? Certainly. But why stop there when you can make a difference?
Q: How large can my team be? You can compete alone (1-person team) or have up to 5 team members.
Q: Can I submit multiple bots? Yes!
Q: I'm from .... can I join? Of course. This is an international competition.
ai4impact's mission is to help everyone, regardless of age or background, learn AI and build applications. Since its launch in 2019, we have successfully helped hundreds of non-programmers develop useful AI solutions.
We believe AI can help change our lives for the better, and everyone -- yes, that includes you, dear reader! -- should be able to utilize this amazing technology for social good.
To find out more, please visit us at http://ai4impact.org/