Ben Brown on bot tools

The O’Reilly Bots Podcast: An optimistic look at the future of bots.

By Jon Bruner
November 17, 2016
"Science & Invention," by John Augustus Walker, 1935. "Science & Invention," by John Augustus Walker, 1935. (source: Library of Congress on Wikimedia Commons)

In this episode of the O’Reilly Bots Podcast, Pete Skomoroch and I speak with Ben Brown, co-founder and CEO of, the bot toolmaker behind the Botkit framework. Brown also runs the Talkabot conference, which was held in Austin this past September.

Discussion points:

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  • The types of bots that people are building and experimenting with on Botkit
  • How the evolution of bots compares to the evolution of mobile apps
  • The strikingly collegial bots community: Brown cites the contributions that IBM and Microsoft have made to Botkit
  • Praise for new types of bots, including notification bots (such as Poncho), what Brown calls “unfurling content” bots (such as Purple), and bots that open channels to discussions with humans
  • Thington, an Internet of Things platform that functions like a chatroom for micro-bots connected to different home devices

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