IDG Contributor Network: Love Google? You might be ditching Slack for Hangouts Chat soon

In the Google ecosystem, there’s only a small amount of overhead.

Google Docs loads quickly, and it’s a click away from Gmail. When you need a file, it’s easy to grab one on Google Drive. For business users, this has proved to be an efficient workflow suite. I use it on a daily basis, and the one thing that always impresses me is how quickly and efficiently it all works.

Now, Google is releasing a powerful new app called Hangouts Chat, which is similar to Slack, Convo, and Microsoft Teams (which debuts next week). It’s available as part of the G Suite platform (formerly known as Google for Work) through a gradual roll-out, although you can apply to test it as an early adopter right away. Like Microsoft Teams and the way it runs within Office 365, Chat is intended to run within the “Google world” so you can quickly share documents, spreadsheets, and presentations, swap files, start a video call, and arrange meetings.

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Computerworld Cloud Computing

Build chat bots with Microsoft’s Bot Framework

One of the more fascinating trends of this past year was the move to conversational computing. Instead of building complex apps, using bots over services like Facebook’s Messenger or Microsoft’s Skype can help simplify customer interactions.

Using bots is a technique that can also work over internal chat tools like Slack and Microsoft Teams, giving rise to self-service “chatops” tools that can manage common service-desk queries. Last week, Microsoft unveiled more of its bot tools, with bots to take content and use it as the basis of conversational services.

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InfoWorld Cloud Computing

How illogical: New Skype bot lets you chat with Spock

Microsoft has made no secret of its grand plans for chat bots, and this week it rolled out five new ones for Skype. Surely the most fun is “Spock,” a bot that promises to help you “learn the ways of Vulcan logic.”

Back in April, Microsoft debuted a preview of Skype bots, the artificial intelligence-based helpers it hopes will make it easier for users to get things done. Today, more than 30,000 developers are building bots for Skype, it says.

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Computerworld Cloud Computing