Microsoft AI and laughter converge at the National Comedy Center

Q: What did the janitor say when he popped out of the closet?


Did you laugh? The joke is one of 100 pre-scripted zingers offered to players of Laugh Battle, an interactive exhibit at the National Comedy Center in Jamestown, New York, that invites guests to challenge each other to see who can make the other crack a smile.

“It gives visitors a taste of what that thing is that comedians get so addicted to, that incredible feeling of making someone laugh,” said Journey Gunderson, the executive director of the museum, which opened to the public Aug. 1 in the hometown of comedy icon Lucille Ball.

Microsoft artificial intelligence technology from Azure Cognitive Services is the behind-the-scenes judge of whether a player’s joke gets a laugh.