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Inquisitive Bot Asks Questions to Test Your ­Understanding


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Who knows what question I should ask the class?

An artificial intelligence developed by researchers at Cornell University has learned to ask questions of its own.

Credit: Bettmann/Getty Images

Researchers at Cornell University say they have developed an artificial intelligence (AI) system that has learned to ask questions of its own.

The machine-learning algorithm is capable of reading a passage of text and coming up with questions that check a person's understanding of the topic.

The researchers trained a neural network on more than 400 Wikipedia articles and 100,000 questions about those articles sourced from crowdworkers. The software learned to recognize patterns that linked questions back to their source text.

The researchers then presented the AI with portions of Wikipedia articles it had not yet seen and found it was able to produce a question for every sentence it reads.

The researchers say the next step is to train the system to ask questions only about sentences that contain statements. "Not all sentences are question-worthy," says Cornell Ph.D. student Xinya Du.

From New Scientist
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