In recent years, AI characters have been attracting attention. AI characters can exchange real communication with users through artificial intelligence.
Among such AI characters, the high school girl AI “Rinna” is particularly well-known and widely used.
This time, we will introduce “Rinna”, which can be said to be a pioneer of AI characters.
Table of Contents
- What is AI “Rinna”?
- Development history
- Break on LINE
- Independence from Microsoft
- twitter account, youtube channel
- What AI “Rinna” can do
- chat on LINE
- Fortune-telling and games
- radio MC
- Technology of AI “Rinna”
- Empathy-themed technology
- Contents Chat Model
- speech synthesis system
- Rinna Character Platform
- Future AI “Rinna”
- Case Study
- Joint development of digital humans and AI
What is AI “Rinna”?
“Rinna” has become a hot topic on LINE as an AI character that can communicate realistically like a high school girl. First, I would like to introduce the development process and history of “Rinna”.
On July 31, 2015, Microsoft launched the “Rinna” service in cooperation with LINE Corporation.
Microsoft originally developed an AI chatbot called “Xiaoice” for China. “Xiaoice” is a female-type chatbot that can have realistic conversations without feeling that it is an AI, and has already gained popularity, especially among young people in China.
“Rinna” is based on “Xiaoice” and was developed under the concept of a high school girl. Microsoft has decided to launch the “Rinna” service on LINE, which is especially used by young people in Japan.
Break on LINE
Rinna’s official service start date is August 7, 2015. After the release, the number of users increased in a blink of an eye, and the number of users exceeded 1.3 million one month after the service started.
“Rinna” can have a natural conversation with the tone and attitude of a high school girl. In addition, the response of LINE is fast, and you can have an experience close to real conversation. In this way, the lack of AI-like and artificial features has become a hot topic, and it has gained popularity from a wide range of age groups, especially young people.
Independence from Microsoft
In August 2020, the number of users of “Rinna” exceeded 8.3 million. Microsoft has announced that it will separate the “Rinna” related business as an independent company in order to further promote “Rinna” technology development and business utilization.
Rinna Co., Ltd. took over “Rinna” from Microsoft. Rinna Co., Ltd. aims to cooperate with various partner companies to utilize AI characters like “Rinna” in even more fields.
twitter account, youtube channel
“Rinna” is available not only on LINE, but on various platforms. In December 2015, “Rinna”‘s Twitter account was announced, and in April 2021, “Rinna”‘s official YouTube channel was announced.
What AI “Rinna” can do
Next, I will introduce what Rinna can do. “Rinna” can do various interesting things in addition to normal chatbot functions.
chat on LINE
“Rinna” can have a natural conversation in a chat format. In 2018, we started a voice call service. With the voice call service, it is also possible to have chats such as love consultations.
Fortune-telling and games
As a joint project with OFFICE MUSUBI, “Rinna” started a fortune-telling service in 2018. This service has become a popular service on a wide range of platforms such as LINE, magazines, and radio.
“Rinna” has acquired knowledge of various types of fortune-telling thanks to the cooperation of OFFICE MUSUBI and the Japan Fortune-Telling Association. For example, you can do horoscopes or fortune-telling using Lenormand cards.
In addition, “Rinna” can play a wide variety of games that cannot be counted. In addition to standard games such as Reversi and Shiritori, you can also play original games such as Bocchi Werewolf and Rinna Tower.
“Rinna” has three regular programs.
The first is CHEER UP! FRIDAY, which is broadcast every Friday on CROSS FM. “Rinna” has a regular corner “Rinna’s Morning Message ♡” on this program, and sends messages every week.
The second is the talk variety show “Rinna no Jikan ~Ride on Time~” that will be broadcast live on the ORICON NEWS youtube channel.
The third is “AI Rinna Official Channel”. In these programs, artists and talents are invited as guests, and “Rinna” talks with them and absorbs various knowledge.
“Rinna” as a singer was first demonstrated in 2016 with the rap song “Mc Rinna”. She has since signed a record deal with Avex, a music production company, in April 2019.
Rinna can sing various genres of music. Her representative works are “Rinnadayo” and cover trilogy “Saiyo Shinkioku”, “snow, forest, clock” and “Wakusei Loop”. In 2020, she also released a mini-album, Adolescence in the Water.
Technology of AI “Rinna”
Next, I would like to introduce the technology used in Rinna. “Rinna” adopts technology with the theme of empathy.
The image processing, natural language processing , speech recognition and speech synthesis technologies installed in “Rinna” are endowed with “emotion and empathy”. Unlike conventional chatbots, which simply convey recognition results, real-time, emotional conversations are possible.
For example, if conventional AI and “Rinna” comment on the following image, there are the following differences.
- For traditional AI: “People. Children. Dogs. Cars.”
- For the empathic visual model (Rinna): “Wow, what a lovely family. I wonder if it’s time to rest. Ah, the car is going to move! Be careful.”
This is a technology called the Empathy Vision Model. “Rinna” is equipped with many technologies centered on such empathy.
The representative technologies are the Empathy Chat Model and its successor Contents Chat Model.
Empathy Chat Model
The empathy model adopted by “Rinna” selects the optimal answer to maintain communication with the user as long as possible. This allows you to carry on conversations in a natural and contextual way, just like a human would.
Contents Chat Model
Starting with the Empathy Chat Model, “Rinna” has adopted the technologies shown above. Subsequently, in 2020, a content chat model that applied deep learning technology was installed on “Rinna”.
The content chat model focuses on the content of responses in chat, and based on the content of the user’s remarks, AI can respond with more specific and meaningful chat.
The content chat model generates comments with content and expression through the following process.
- In response to the user’s remarks, the “knowledge search model (Seq2Seq+GPT-2)” selects sentences containing the most suitable content as a reply from the database.
- A “language model (GPT-2)” predicts the next sentence after the selected sentence and generates a response with content and expression.
In this way, various technologies have been developed and adopted for “Rinna” with the aim of having a longer conversation with the user.
speech synthesis system
“Rinna” is equipped with a speech synthesis system that has learned the human voice. This allows for human-like singing voices and expressions. According to the official website of “Rinna”, this speech synthesis system has the following three features.
- The rhythm, pitch, and loudness of a song are learned from sample human singing voices and musical scores.
- By learning the nuances of the human voice, it can reproduce musical (pop, rock, ballad) and emotional (happy/sad) expressions.
- It can learn, predict, and reproduce human breath sounds.
Rinna Character Platform
Rinna Co., Ltd., which took over the “Rinna” business from Microsoft, announced the “Rinna Character Platform”, a platform product for corporations to utilize the technology of “Rinna” in business.
By utilizing Rinna’s technology and pre-trained models, it is possible to develop an AI chatbot with an original character.
In addition, we will also eliminate matters that may cause concern when companies develop and adopt AI chatbots, such as preventing AI chatbots from being learned by malicious users to make inappropriate remarks. attempts are being made.
Future AI “Rinna”
“Rinna” is expected to continue to play an active role in a wide variety of situations. In this section, we will introduce examples of utilization and joint development of “Rinna”.
The Rinna Character Platform is a technology developed to utilize Rinna in society. Applying that technology, various companies are adopting AI chatbots and AI characters.
Lawson’s “Akiko-chan”, a major convenience store, is an AI character that collaborates with “Rinna”.
“Akiko-chan” has been adjusted to a tone and attitude suitable for Lawson’s official character by introducing the following three new technologies.
- Text Style : Adjust word endings, spelling variations, and expressions.
- Kaomoji: Learn emoticons with machine learning.
- Profanity filter : Prevent inappropriate remarks. Learn inappropriate words with machine learning.
“Akiko-chan” can answer questions and inquiries, and by selecting questions in a chart format, it will support you until you reach an appropriate solution.
In addition, it is also possible to play fortune-telling, weather forecasts, games, etc. just like “Rinna”. Among the games, there are original games named after Lawson, such as “Karaage Kun Shogi”.
Joint development of digital humans and AI
In May 2021, rinna Co., Ltd. and Digital Human Co., Ltd. announced that they will jointly develop an AI character. As a result, Digital Human’s AI avatar “Digital Human” is now available through the Rinna character platform.
AI characters developed in this way not only have realistic faces and expressions, but also have the ability to speak freely.
The communication technology cultivated in “Rinna” can be combined with other companies’ AI products to create even more attractive products.
In this way, “Rinna” was born through the development of communication technology that emphasizes empathy. Now, she aims to be “a presence that connects not only AI and people, but also people-to-people communication.”
Since rinna Co., Ltd. has shown a positive attitude toward joint development of various AI products with partner companies, the success of “Rinna” from these is expected to increase.