To help with his class this spring, a Georgia Tech professor hired Jill Watson, a teaching assistant unlike any other in the world. Throughout the semester, she answered questions online for students, relieving the professor’s overworked teaching staff.
But, in fact, Jill Watson was an artificial intelligence bot.
Ashok Goel, a computer science professor, did not reveal Watson’s true identity to students until after they’d turned in their final exams.
Students were amazed. “I feel like I am part of history because of Jill and this class!” wrote one in the class’s online forum. “Just when I wanted to nominate Jill Watson as an outstanding TA in the CIOS survey!” said another.