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Chat and Tips - by Thom Whalen and his crew at the Communications Research Centre in Canada

The CHAT and TIPS natural language information systems were developed by the Communications Research Centre to provide easy access to electronic information. CHAT and TIPS provide natural-language interfaces that allows users to ask English questions and receive answers. They came into being because they wanted an interface that would be easier to use than traditional menu or keyword systems, and are ideally suited for situations where people have little knowledge of computers.

CHAT was used in large field trials in which the public was able to use the system to retrieve information about AIDS. Although the software is not perfect, it usually provides the information requested, and most people find the system extremely valuable.

The CHAT system can be reached at telnet://

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