Introducing Panda Bot, a beta AI experience for Community!

Renee_Carney
Community Team
Community Team
23 24 11.5K

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This Community empowers you with information to use Instructure software successfully, but we know it can sometimes feel like an expedition to find a single panda in the deepest darkest bamboo forest. We want to help you find that panda faster and in a way that feels natural. 

It’s why we’re introducing Panda Bot, a beta AI experience!  

 

Panda Bot is a generative AI tool that leverages the official guides for Instructure software solutions to answer your questions in a personal and personable way. We have partnered with Ada Support to structure a beta chat bot in the Instructure Community, during the busiest time of year, as we seek to make this the smoothest back-to-school season for us and you. Over the next few months we’ll be analyzing and evaluating the chat bot experience to determine if Panda Bot will become a permanent feature of the Community - of course, we’ll keep you posted on what we discover along the way!

When will Panda Bot be available?

Tentatively [we’re implementing this at lightning speed, so I have to say tentatively in case we have a delay], you will see Panda Bot on Monday, August 21st. This week, you will see the Panda Bot placeholder in the bottom right corner of the Community, announcing its pending launch. On Monday, Panda Bot will transition from a placeholder to a beta chat bot experience!   

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How will I access Panda Bot?

If you are logged in to the Community you will be able to click on Panda Bot and begin your conversation. If you are not logged in to the Community, Panda Bot will prompt you to log in before you can chat. Providing Panda Bot behind a login helps us to ensure our analysis and evaluation of the beta experience is targeted on serving you, our customers, and eliminates the noise of random encounters. 

What can I expect from Panda Bot? 

Panda Bot will reference all official guides for Canvas, Mastery, Impact, and Elevate products in order to provide you a clear and thorough answer to your question in a tone that mirrors speaking with a friendly support agent.

In the event that Panda Bot does not provide helpful information, there will not be a direct route to submit a support case as part of the beta experience - keep reading for your next steps if you stump Panda Bot. 

What if I stump Panda Bot? 

This is a real possibility and could happen. We’ve been working with Ada to make sure the bot is as knowledgeable and accurate as possible, but there’s always the chance the answer isn’t in our official guides or the generative AI doesn’t understand the question (remember, this is still a beta feature). In the event that Panda Bot does not provide you with a response that answers your question, there are a couple of options. 

  1. If something is not working correctly or appears broken, you should leverage your institution's support channels to seek help. You can find more information on Canvas Support paths here.
  2. If you have a how-to question and Panda Bot isn’t understanding, you may want to try again with different words (ex: marking, try grading) or navigate to the page dedicated to the product you have a question about and click ‘read the guides’ to browse the tables of contents.
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  3. If your question is more theoretical or strategic, you may want to ask other Community members. You can do this by visiting the product page (ex. Canvas LMS) and clicking ‘ask a question’ 

How can I share feedback for Panda Bot?

Panda Bot will ask you to rate your experience, but you’re also always welcome to email Community@instructure.com with any feedback!

24 Comments
stephentomasovi
Community Explorer

In the near future...

Instructor: Design my Canvas course using the latest online quality course standards.  Throw in some nice accessible images relevant to my subject on the homepage and module overview pages while you're at it.

Panda Bot 3000: Hold my bamboo shoot.

Renee_Carney
Community Team
Community Team

@stephentomasovi 

Thank you for that morning giggle.  I love this so much!  We just may need to program a little easter egg in 😉 

panda-bear-holding-bamboo-in-his-paws-while-eating-dejavu-designs

mdvdmorris
Community Explorer

Today's the day! I'm looking forward to the launch. Thanks for everything y'all do!

Renee_Carney
Community Team
Community Team

We are too, @mdvdmorris. We're wrapping up some final paperwork for privacy and security and then we'll be opening up Panda Bot!!!! 

Renee_Carney
Community Team
Community Team

Paperwork is complete and things are in motion to launch shortly 

KristinL
Community Team
Community Team

Panda Bot is live! Community Documentation will be made available soon.

AganaZephenia
Community Member

Hello Panda! 

IanGoh
Community Contributor

I've love it if PandaBot could summarize answers from the Community Fora. Not sure if it's part of the body of information it knows...

Renee_Carney
Community Team
Community Team

@IanGoh I'm not familiar with Community Fora, what are you looking for the bot to reference?

IanGoh
Community Contributor

I mean all these posts in the community.canvaslms.com.  It'd be nice if PandaBot could answer questions from what people had posted already (e.g., some with solutions).

IanGoh
Community Contributor

Also it be good if pandabot could provide links to the information it returns 

LasoniaGentle
Community Explorer

Thank you so much Renee Carney!! This was very helpful 😩

James
Community Champion

@IanGoh, I talked with the Community Team at InstructureCon and asked about that. Their response  [paraphrased] was that they had considered that but while there are a lot of correct answers in the Community, there are also some incorrect ones, bad practices, and stale information (that was current at the time but no longer applies). They wanted PandaBot to return correct and current information, not send people down the wrong path.

I wonder if there is a way to tell PandaBot that you wanted to include community contributions and that you were aware of the potential downsides. By default it would be off and only authoritative information would be returned. I'm still not sure that's a great idea, though. Just because something is oft-repeated does not mean it's a good thing to do. Many of the contributions are ways to hack Canvas and they generally would prefer that we not do that. It may defeat the purpose of the PandaBot by adding that content.

I don't like automated bots or response systems in general as they tend to stick me in infinite loops or don't answer my question. I would like to think I'm an advanced user (maybe to everyone but L1 support). But for those coming in with questions that are in the guides, it provides another way for people to find the answers. The guides can be challenging if you're not sure what you're looking for or if you call it one things but the guides use a different name for it.

Even finding the guides can be challenging for some. It took me 5 clicks from the homepage and scrolling down to find the Instructor Guide and I knew what I was looking for. That doesn't include additional clicks to find the article I'm looking for and likely getting the wrong one. If people can ask PandaBot a question and it takes them there quickly, then it's a win. If it sends them to the wrong place because it's polluted with noise, then it's not so helpful.

I don't know if it does that or not as I don't like bots and haven't tried it yet.

Renee_Carney
Community Team
Community Team

@IanGoh - Thank you for that feedback.  We currently have Panda Bot pointed only at the official guides so not to muddy the waters.  It's still learning and we didn't want to confuse it with what is official [and 100% correct] and what is not. 
We also agree with you about having URL links to accompany the answers given. Right now, citing the source is not available, but that is something we are working with Ada on.  

@LasoniaGentle - you are most welcome! 

JasmineOguntuga
Advocate

Looking forward to using this! 

Dar4Char
Community Explorer

I'm assuming that this is not for FFT?

Darlene Miller

NickiJohnson
Community Member

Im soory. Im not sure what that is.

Renee_Carney
Community Team
Community Team

@Dar4Char 

FFT accounts can use Panda Bot. The only caveat there is that there may be questions that you as it that it may not know if FFT has the feature or not when it provides you the directions. So you might have to do a little deeper investigation in the documentation if you can't find the feature it directs you to. 

DeAnneCowans
Community Member

I'm looing forward to using this application of Panda

DeAnneCowans
Community Member

I apologize for the misspelled wording. I am looking forward to using Panda more in detail.

stimme
Community Contributor

@Renee_Carney PandaBot has started showing little pop up message without me clicking it. I do not want this. Does PandaBot have an off switch?

Renee_Carney
Community Team
Community Team

Hi @stimme 
We did implement some elements in Panda Bot to help with the peak season (back to school). It serves up some of the most popular guides or resources when you visit a specific area of the Community.  You can click the X to close Panda Bot, but there is not a way to turn it off.  We'll explore the settings and converse as a team if Panda Bot should share resources only once per session or continuously.  

Thank you for the feedback.  We appreciate it.

KardariusDavis
Community Member

hi

ANDREWJONES208
Community Explorer

Is Canvas planning on adding an extension for ChatGPT? I have seen this work with Canva, the presentation platform. 

 

Is it possible to create a quiz, rubric etc in ChatGPT and then seamlessly integrate into my existing modules?

 

Thanks,

 

Andrew Jones,

Educator