A virtual assistant for web sites

Authors: Lizandro Kirst da Silva, Daniel Ribeiro Brahm, Gustavo Tagliassuchi (ADS Digital), José Luiz Duizith (ULBRA), Stanley Loh (ULBRA, UCPEL) and Feliz Gouveia (University Fernando Pessoa / CEREM)

Abstract: This work presents a Virtual Assistant (VA) whose main goal is to supply information for Websites users. A VA is a software system that interacts with persons through a Web browser, receiving textual questions and answering automatically without human intervention. The VA supplies information by looking for similar questions in a knowledge base and giving the corresponding answer. Artificial Intelligence techniques are employed in this matching process, to compare the user’s question against questions stored in the base. The main advantage of using the VA is to minimize information overload when users get lost in Websites. The VA can guide the user across the web pages or directly supply information. This is especially important for customers visiting an enterprise site, looking for products, services or prices or needing information about some topic. The VA can also help in Knowledge Management processes inside enterprises, offering an easy way for people storing and retrieving knowledge. An extra advantage is to reduce the structure of Call Centers, since the VA can be given to customers in a CD-ROM. Furthermore, the VA provides Webmasters
with statistics about the usage of the VA (themes more asked, number of visitants, time of conversation).

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Gustavo Tagliassuchi

Velha ave de rapina, estudioso da web e seus desdobramentos, nerd, micreiro, pai dedicado de três filhos (um é peludo), marido esporádico, empreendedor, especialista em desenvolvimento de software para web, pesquisador, escritor, professor, marketeiro digital, blogueiro, apreciador de cervejas artesanais, profundo admirador do WordPress, ouvinte das músicas dos anos 80, sobrevivente do colesterol alto e corredor muito muito amador.

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