Happy 1st Birthday Kamu!

We wish you all the best for your first birthday!

We from Inland have been part of your journey to become the one-year old you are now! We are proud of who you are today and looking forward to be part of your development during the next year.

For your first birthday we have a few wishes for you:

We wish you learn to understand others better.

At the moment you might still misunderstand your users sometimes. But we know the team behind you constantly works to make you better. As every one-year old you still have to learn lots of words and synonyms, and you don’t know about all topics yet. We hope that in the next year you’ll be better at understanding but also be able to give answers on more topics. Yes, you got it!

We wish that you expand your vocabulary but keep talking as clear as you do now.

While we hope that you will learn more words all the time, we really appreciate that you keep it simple. You use simple language, short sentences and say what you mean. We know that is not always easy to explain bureaucratic issues in clear language but we admire your efforts. Keep it up!

We wish that you continue to be there for us.

You’re the only one at Migri who works 24/7. And as a little surprise, for us as part of your parent-team: You haven’t been sick ever. You are online now 365 days, every day, with no breaks! You show the same patience to your users day and night, no matter if it’s christmas, or the hottest day in summer. We love your endurance!

We wish that you continue travelling around the world with us.

You are probably one of the most well-known one-year-olds: With us you have been to Argentina, Brasil, Denmark, Germany, Italy and Latvia. We have talked about how we designed you to people from many different countries and backgrounds. Some were designers just as we are, others are IT people, policy makers, civil servants and so much more. Everyone wants to get to know you! Let’s see where the journey takes us in your second year!

We wish you that learn to speak many languages.

It’s a lot easier to travel the world when you speak many languages. Given that you are only one and you already speak Finnish and English we are not worried. We know that Swedish is your next goal, but after that we hope that you learn the languages of immigrants in Finland: Be it Russian, Arabic, Kurdish, Hindi, Chinese, Somali or Vietnamese. It’s yours to choose! (We’d choose Spanish and German — since that’s the languages we speak.). Buena suerte amigo!

We wish you to continue developing collaboratively

We know that raising a chatbot is a team effort and we know your team very well. We are part of it, actually! We are proud that you’ve been raised collaboratively: There is always discussion about what you should learn next, and many people are involved in that. Within the content team there’s collaboration ongoing, there’s a review group that looks at all your content before you are taught to reply, and there have been many workshops, brainstormings and all kinds of other collaborative efforts to make you the best chatbot we could. Hold on to this good practice!

We wish that you continue to inspire others.

In the last year you have inspired many others, we cannot even count any more who are all the other organisations that we have presented you to. But two organisations you have particularly inspired we want to mention: You have become friends with VeroBot and Patrek, two bots from the Tax Administration and the Patent and Registration Office in Finland. Users can actually ask you a question, but then you redirect them to VeroBot or Patrek, depending on the user’s needs. This is inspiring! In friendships and networks we trust!

We wish you that you start to talk.

We know that you have done your first steps towards talking. You actually speak quite well already, but unfortunately understanding others is still quite hard for you. Especially if they have any accents or dialects. So we wish you that your spoken language understanding gets better this year and that eventually all immigrants could talk to you via phone calls. This is especially important for some of your users who would prefer to talk rather than writing. Your voice interface is on its way, though it might take many trials. Only those who dare to fail greatly can ever achieve greatly.

We wish you that you become more personal.

Currently, you answer the same things to all users, but you cannot yet get them personalised advice or information. Currently your co-parents are working to teach you about individual’s situation in the processing queue. Let’s hope that you’ll learn quickly!

In the long run we hope that you develop from a chatbot to a virtual assistant, who can, for example, fill the forms for the immigrants and offer specialised help! We know that this will take a couple of years of learning, but we’re hopeful! You will make it!

Apart from our wishes we also have a few promises to your 2nd year of development:

We, from Inland, promise to help you …

…experiment on how to develop further

In the next year we will focus on experimenting new concepts with you: We will continue to experiment with a voice-based version of Kamu, how to integrate you to EnterFinland and how you could help immigrants filling applications more easily. After all, the forms are just a means to an end.

…stay visionary but keep your robot feet on the ground

We offer you and your team to help them develop working practices that work for you! We happily continue to facilitate sessions within the team to plan next actions, prioritise or give feedback to each other. We also love to support the team in collaborating with other partners within Migri and beyond. We want to continuously inspire you by providing visionary ideas on your future steps.

… build long term relationships with friends

In the last year we have helped you to socialise with Verobot and Patrek (we also acted as midwives in their making), and we will continue this experiment, and evaluate it when the pilot ends. Let’s work together to keep your relationship with Verobot and Patrek productive. We know that in the long run, only long term relationships are the important ones in life.

What a great year this was! Now we hope you celebrate and “kippis” to the next year!

With gratitude and joy

Inland!

authors: Suse Miessner & Mariana Salgado