What is AIML? Artificial Intelligence Markup Language

AIML stands for Artificial Intelligence Markup Language. It is an extensible markup language dialect for creating natural language software agents. The programming tool is also known as XML dialect. The software engineers use this programming language to develop artificial intelligence applications. The main feature of this language is creating a human interface that is easy to code and simple to maintain.

What is AIML?

Artificial Intelligence Markup Language is a programming language like other coding languages. For example, we use HTML for web designing. Similarly, AIML is used for developing chatbots and pattern recognition. Chatbots are human-like intelligent digital assistants of business who can serve business purposes 24/7. Artificial Intelligence Markup Language is the most popular language for developing chatbot applications for B2C.

AIML starts with the code <aiml> and ends with the closing tag </aiml>. Inside it has a category, and inside of the category, it has a pattern and template. Based on each text pattern, it shows the texts of the template. The chatbot may have thousands of patterns and templates. Here is an example of this language:

<aiml version="1.0.1" encoding="UTF-8"?>


<pattern> HELLO AIMLGEN </pattern>


Hello my new friend!




Here, the user if types “HELLO AIMLGEN,” then the bot will reply, “Hello, my new friend!

FlowChart of AIMLThe flowchart diagram shows that AIML based chatbot can work with a range of inputs. The three options like “take call”, “accept call” and ‘join call” have executed choice “accept call”. If the option does not match, it will answer the default text “ Could not understand”. 

History of AIML

The concept of Artificial Intelligence Markup Language developed between 1995 to 2002. The American author and scientist Richard S. Wallace is the main contributor and a worldwide free software community. Wallace is the botmaster of Artificial Linguistic Internet Computer Entity (A.L.I.C.E.). Later the organization became popular through media and achieved 500 developers from around the globe. In 2015 they developed AIML 2.0, the improved version of this language.

Why Do You Use AIML For Chatbots?

AIML is the open standard for the chatbot. It is simple, easy to code, learn, extend and interpret. Here are some characteristics of this language:

1. The language is open. It is not a BlackBox or obfuscating “AI ” buzzwords. There is no vendor lock-in hassle.

2. You can write the code in almost any natural language. SO it is multilingual.

3. It is flexible and extensible so that you can integrate your API into your CRM.

4. The code is easy to learn, so that it may take a few days.

5. The markup language is simple XML-based.

6. It is market-tested because it has more than one million developers.

Where to use it?

Artificial Intelligence Markup Language usesIf your understanding is clear, you can virtually develop a narrow AI application like a chatbot anywhere with AIML. You can apply it anywhere. However, the major applications of AI Markup language are in the banking, medical, and financial sectors. You can also use it for lead generation, answering FAQ questions, and customer support. 

Who can learn AIML?

The software developers can learn Artificial Intelligence Markup Language. Particularly for the developers who want to develop a customized AI chatbot, they can learn this simple language. Before proceeding further, you may need the basic knowledge of JAVA. 

Why AIML for Chatbot?

Artificial Intelligence Markup Language is widely adopted for creating Chatbots and mobile virtual assistants. It is very easy to use, and it can hold a bulk amount of code with .aiml extension. Only three primary elements are enough to code categories, patterns, and templates. 

How will I create an AIML chatbot?

A prior knowledge of JAVA is necessary to create a chatbot. However, here is some Java-like code that is very easy to use on your business bot platform. Here are some AIML basic tags as an example:

Serial Basic Tags Why to use?
1. <star>-Tag Used to match wild card * character(s) in the <pattern> Tag
2. <random>-Tag Used for getting random responses
3. <srai>-Tag Multipurpose tag, used to call/match the other categories
4. <set>-Tag Used to set value in an AIML variable
5. <get>-Tag Used to get value stored in an AIML variable
6. <that>-Tag Used in AIML to respond based on the context
7. <condition>-Tag Used in AIML to respond to matching input
8. <li>-Tag Used to represent multiple responses
9. <topic>-Tag store a context 
10. <think>-Tag store a variable without notifying the user

Most Important AIML Tags

Besides the above Artificial Intelligence Markup Language tags, we will discuss the four major tags. Here are those four tags.Most Important AIML Tags

<AIML> Tag

The first of the languages is the <AIML> tag. Like other programming languages, it has an opening and closing tag. It contains version and encoding attributes information. At least one category tag is mandatory inside it. This tag is necessary to add at least one single knowledge base.

<Category> Tag

The <category> tag is the fundamental knowledge unit of the Chatbot systems. It must have <pattern> and <template> tags inside it. The <pattern> tag represents input from users and the <template> is the answer of bot.

<Pattern> tag

The <pattern> tag is designed to represent user input. Inside <category> tag the <pattern> tag comes first. It has the option of a wild card to match more than one sentence as user input. The programming language is case insensitive. So, HellO, hello, and HELLO have the same meaning. 


The <template> tag represents the reply from a chatbot. Based on the user’s query, it matches first and shows the results. It can save data, call another program and give a conditional answer. Moreover, it can delegate another category. 

AIML Softwares Services Provider

Many organizations are providing AIML support. You can use their customized application of them. Salesforce Einstein, IBM Watson, Deep Vision, and Cloud Machine Learning Engine are the market leaders. However, you can also choose Azure Machine Learning Studio, Nvidia Deep Learning AI, and Playment.

Where can I learn Artificial Intelligence Markup Language?

PandoraBots is a great site to learn because it has pre-existing codes. Richard Wallac owns it. You can design and develop and test your chatbot on this platform. It is free without the hassle of paying per message. 

GitHub is another excellent resource for learning AIML. The developer community keeps here the source code of the chatbot. You can quickly learn it. I learned from the free course option of Udemy and Tutorialspoint.

AIML is an XML dialect computing language. It has a collection of rules for chatbot conversation. The intelligence capabilities depend on the number of rules in the code. 

Final Thought

Though AIML is a rule-based category, it also has a self-learning capacity. The code is the brain of a chatbot. One chatbot application can use multiple sets of code, and it is capable of behaving differently. 

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