Woebot Is Therapy Inside a Chatbot

When Alison Darcy began developing a mental-health-focused chatbot for Facebook last summer, she made a point to give it a robotic name — nothing even vaguely human, like Siri or Alexa. She went with something charmingly mechanical: Woebot. Her service uses lessons from a short-term, goal-oriented psychotherapy method known as cognitive behavioral treatment to help people track their moods, and the name clarified that it was by no means a human replacement. It also showed off what Darcy saw as her program’s greatest strength. Read more

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