THE GUARDIAN - Aug 17 - Technology is often blamed for social isolation. We’d rather message our friends than meet them. Chatbots take this to the next level. Cortana, the Microsoft creation, will text-message users back and forth about everything. In China, Xiaoice has attracted millions of loyal followers since its introduction last year. Dubbed the "girlfriend app", the chatbot uses artificial-intelligence software to remember details from previous discussions and mines the web for question-and-answer style conversations.