How My Program Passed the Turing Test

  • Mark Humphrys


In 1989, the author put an ELIZA-like chatbot on the Internet. The conversations this program had can be seen – depending on how one defines the rules (and how seriously one takes the idea of the test itself) – as a passing of the Turing Test. This is the first time this event has been properly written. This chatbot succeeded due to profanity, relentless aggression, prurient queries about the user, and implying that they were a liar when they responded. The element of surprise was also crucial. Most chatbots exist in an environment where people expectto find some bots among the humans. Not this one. What was also novel was the onlineelement. This was certainly one of the first AI programs online. It seems to have been the first (a) AI real-time chat program, which (b) had the element of surprise, and (c) was on the Internet. We conclude with some speculation that the future of all of AI is on the Internet, and a description of the “World- Wide-Mind” project that aims to bring this about.


BITNET chat chatbot CHATDISC ELIZA Internet Turing Test 


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. Doris, T., 1998, MGonz version online as CGI script, formerly at:
  2. Fox, K., 2000, The AOLiza program,
  3. Hayes, P. J. and Ford, K. M., 1995, Turing test considered harmful, Proceedings of the International Joint Conference on Artificial Intelligence (IJCAI-95): 972–977, Montreal.Google Scholar
  4. Humphrys, M., 1995, How my program passed the Turing Test,˜humphrys/ eliza.html. This web page has 3 sub-pages: MGonz – The LISP source code, MGonzNet – The REXX source code, and The DRAKE conversation.Google Scholar
  5. Humphrys, M., 2001a, The Internet in the 1980s,˜humphrys/net.80s.html.Google Scholar
  6. Humphrys, M., 2001b, Distributing a mind on the Internet: the world-wide-mind, Proceedings of the 6th European Conference on Artificial Life (ECAL-01), Springer.Google Scholar
  7. Humphrys, M. and O’Leary, C., 2002, Constructing complex minds through multiple authors, in: From Animals To Animats 7: 7th International Conference on Simulation of Adaptive Behavior (SAB-02), August 2002, Edinburgh, Scotland.Google Scholar
  8. Hutchens, J. L., 1997, How to Pass the Turing Test by Cheating, Department of Electrical and Electronic Engineering, University of Western Australia, technical report TR97–05.Google Scholar
  9. Kaufman, J., 2001, Jenny18 – A Cybersex Bot Implemented in Eliza, Leonard, A., 1997, Bots: The Origin of New Species, Penguin.Google Scholar
  10. Michie, D., 1993, Turing’s test and conscious thought, Artificial Intelligence 60: 1–22.CrossRefMathSciNetGoogle Scholar
  11. Moravec, H., 1998, Robot: Mere Machine to Transcendent Mind, Oxford University Press, Oxford.Google Scholar
  12. O’Connor, D., 1999, MGonz version online as CGI script,
  13. Thomas, E., 1996, History of LISTSERV, L-Soft Inc.,
  14. Turing, A. M., 1950, Computing machinery and intelligence, Mind 59(236): 433–460.CrossRefMathSciNetGoogle Scholar
  15. Weizenbaum, J., 1966, ELIZA – A computer program for the study of natural language communication between man and machine, Communications of the ACM 9: 36–45.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Whitby, B., 1997, Why the Turing test is AI’s biggest blind alley, in: Machines and Thought: The Legacy of Alan Turing, Vol. 1, Millican and Clark, eds., Clarendon Press, Oxford.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Mark Humphrys
    • 1
  1. 1.Dublin City UniversityDublinIreland

Personalised recommendations