Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Brief update on original thesis idea: Folklore in online information provision for Jamaican small business development

by Mark-Shane Scale on Tuesday, 7 February 2012 at 21:20 ·

It has been awhile that I haven't been blogging. That is because I have had little time to think. Well now, I have had a little time to converse with myself (intellectually that is).

A number of persons were wondering if I am dropping folklore from my thesis. This is a partial answer to those persons as well as an opportunity for me to share my thinking so far.

After pursuing a quest to find out about conversational agents, I am now in a better position to propose how folklore can be incorporated into designing an online library service to serve small business persons. I am not going into detail here, but just giving you a synopsis of my head space as my ideas evolve. Perhaps though I may not pursue the idea for my thesis but beyond it (or when I have completed) as I have to think about practical considerations regarding supervisors.

Currently I have seen that a conversational agent can be created with a unique personality. For me, I have the dream of taking Anansi/Anancy from Jamaican folklore and converting him into a conversational agent for small business persons. As an artificial intelligent agent, Anancy will be able to converse in the natural language of Jamaicans, incorporating proverb and proverbial sayings while answering questions on where to find business information sources. Anancy could also be programmed to converse with Jamaican youth entrepreneurs who want to get guidance on how to go about their establishing their businesses.

Hence, just to let you know, folklore can still be important to my thesis. You can give your comments, share your ideas and give feedback. I am open to thinking it through some more and will entertain whatever critique that can be levelled against this idea.

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