An IM bot is a chatterbot program that uses instant messaging (IM) as an application interface. IM users can add the name of the IM bot to their buddy list the same way they add co-workers, family, and friends. Because the bot uses artificial intelligence (AI), the end user has the feeling he is talking to a real person and is apt to forget that he is really just querying a database. Enterprise-class instant messaging systems are incorporating IM bots to provide a convenient way for employees to look up information. Some IM bots are able to connect to outside databases and provide the user with news, weather reports, driving directions, movie times, stock quotes, and just about any other information you can think of that can be found in a database. IM bots are also called interactive agents.
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