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Artificial Life Launches Bot-based Shopping Site

Smart bot provider Artificial Life Inc. launched an e-commerce site called net-tissimo.com in a joint venture with the Bon appetit group of Switzerland.

The site allows customers to use a virtual butler as their main interface using Artificial Life's smart-bot technology.

Net-tissimo.com customers can communicate with the virtual butler robot in natural language. The bot will explain the system and products, accept orders, search for products and services, and is able to communicate with a client even when he is not browsing the net-tissimo.com site.

Net-tissimo.com was implemented in cooperation with Hewlett Packard Switzerland and the Swiss telecommunication giant Swisscom.

Initially, net-tissimo.com is concentrating on the German-speaking countries in Europe. The service is currently available in Switzerland and will be extended to Germany, Liechtenstein, and Austria as of July 2000.

With the "catch of the day" model, net-tissimo.com members can buy special high value products or unique services at discounted price, usually much less than street price, the companies said.

"If you're keen to hotrod around Cannes in a Formula 1 racing car or travel by husky sled through Lapland, you've come to the right place at net-tissimo.com. We're not satisfied with everyday things and offers: we want to present something special to our customers every day," said Roland Berger, CEO of net-tissimo.com.

Net-tissimo.com is the first implementation of Artificial Life's second generation e-commerce platform called "RoboShop," which is based on Artificial Life's proprietary SmartEngine technology and smart Internet robots.

Other bots will be added to net-tissimo.com over the next weeks, including ALife-SalesRep for customer profiling and personalized direct marketing features, and ALife-Messenger for automated but personalized e-mail responses. RoboShop is intended to be available as a product for the US market in the first quarter. of 2000.

Bon appetit Group -- a result of the merger between Bon appetit Holding and the Usego Hofer Curti Group -- is one of the larger Swiss, public companies in the field of food sales and service.