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Behind the Bot at the IEEE Global Humanitarian Technology Conference

Building on the theme of the 2022 IEEE Global Humanitarian Technology Conference, Joseph Wei describes how a bot with a voice and image synthesized from a human is serving up a promotional message for this year’s conference. Wei, who is the 2022 IEEE GHTC Sponsorship Chair, explains that this technique allows him to tailor the message and its delivery in a way that is most relevant to a given audience.

The conversation touches upon the ethics of the use of bots and the IEEE’s efforts in that regard. Wei reveals that the MOVE data center on wheels (DCOW) will make an appearance at the 2022 IEEE GHTC. MOVE is part of another initiative, whereby IEEE volunteers help restore communications in areas struck by disaster.

Interview Highlights:

  • 00:20 – Wei provides an overview of the bot.
  • 00:54 – It is a time saver that allows a much broader, yet focused message
  • 01:24 – Producing it starts with a script – which is the most time-consuming part of the production.
  • 01:53 – Although the output is synthesized, the bot is based on a real person.
  • 02:59 – The conversation briefly shifts to the ethics of bot use and the IEEE’s efforts leading that discussion.
  • 04:11 – The appearance of the MOVE truck is one of the things that Joseph looks forward to seeing at this year’s conference.

In case it is not obvious, the opening of this video is the promotional bot. Joseph wrote the script and the bot was created by Patrick Martin, Partner at AI Focus.

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