In recent years, there has been a rising tendency in AI research to enhance Human-Computer Interaction by humanizing machines. However, to create a robot capable of acting and talking with a user at the human level requires the robot to understand human cognitive behaviors, while one of the most important human behaviors is expressing and understanding emotions and affects. As a vital part of human intelligence, emotional intelligence is defined as the ability to perceive, integrate, understand, and regulate emotions. Though a variety of models have been proposed for conversation generation from large-scale social data, it is still quite challenging (and yet to be addressed) to generate emotional responses.
In this challenge, participants are expected to generate Chinese responses that are not only appropriate in content but also adequate in emotion, which is quite important for building an empathic chatting machine. For instance, if user says “My cat died yesterday”, the most appropriate response may be “It’s so sad, so sorry to hear that” to express sadness, but also could be “Bad things always happen, I hope you will be happy soon”to express comfort.