Artificial Intelligence (AI) Terms & Glossary


With so much jargon and so many acronyms, it can be overwhelming to understand the world of Artificial Intelligence (AI). But Bold360 has you covered with a glossary of AI terms you need to know. We specialize in making AI accessible and easy for everyone to use. Start here and educate yourself with the definition of AI, Machine Learning, Unstructured Data, Natural Language Processing, and more AI-related terms.

Artificial Intelligence (AI)

AI is any technology that exhibits intelligent behavior.

Machine Learning (ML)

A type of AI technology that learns to behave intelligently based on data/experience.

Supervised Machine Learning

When humans provide a training set of structured data that maps inputs to outputs, and the computer makes predictions about new inputs belonging to the provided outputs.

Deep Learning (Unsupervised Machine Learning)

When computers are fed structured or unstructured data and use their own logic to classify data. Outputs are not determined by a human.

Reinforcement Learning (RL)

The middle ground between supervised and unsupervised learning is reinforcement learning. Unstructured data can be used for input, and users guide the algorithms toward the correct outputs.

Structured Data

Information that has been organized and labeled to train a machine. i.e. □ = square

Unstructured Data

Information that isn’t organized or labeled for machines to understand, such as freeform text.

Knowledge Base

A repository of structured or unstructured data that machines (like chatbots) can draw from. Learn more about KB Software

Natural Language Processing (NLP)

AI technology that uses algorithms to understand the meaning, or “intent” of language. Also called Natural Language Understanding (NLU). Learn more about NLP

Natural Language Understanding (NLU)

A subset of Natural Language Processing (NLP). Natural Language Understanding refers to the ability to a computer’s ability to understand incoming intents. Learn More about NLU

Natural Language Generation (NLG)

A subset of Natural Language Processing (NLP). Natural Language Generation refers to a computer’s ability to generate responses to incoming intents.

Conversational AI

AI that comprehends and engages in contextual dialogue using NLP and additional AI algorithms. Learn more about Conversational AI


Humans writing rules and phrases to manually author bot behavior.

Cognitive AI

Advanced AI that uses machine learning algorithms and deep learning to resemble human cognition.

AI Chatbot (bot)

Computer software program designed to engage in back-and-forth dialogue with a human, typically over digital channels (e.g. messaging applications, websites, or mobile applications). Learn more about AI Chatbots

Virtual Agent

Computer software program, typically with a computer-generated human-like appearance, designed to automate tasks, especially tasks associated with online customer service and support. Learn more about Virtual Agents

Transparent AI

Also called “White Box AI,” this is a type of artificial intelligence where all possible outcomes are known ahead of time. Transparent AI relies on human programmers to map inputs to the right output. The computer program will then cluster new data into similar groups and map those groups to outcomes that it was given. Learn more about Transparent AI

Opaque AI

Also called “Black Box AI,” this is a type of artificial intelligence where the potential outcomes are not given to the computer ahead of time. Deep machine learning algorithms replace “programming,” so the computer reaches new conclusions on its own.

Proactive AI

Refers to Artificial Intelligence that proactively takes action once certain criteria is met. Proactive AI is opposed to Reactive AI, which responds to a human action. Learn more about Proactive AI

Customer Self-Service

A type of customer support where the customer is given all the tools and resources to answer their question or solve their problem on their own, without engaging a human agent. Learn more about Customer Self-Service

Knowledge Management System

A tool used to organize and disseminate all of the information and resources available inside an organization. Knowledge management systems often supply the data that chatbots and virtual agents use to engage with customers. Learn more about Knowledge Management System

Intelligent Routing

When supporting customers, businesses must route inquiries to the appropriate resource for resolution. Intelligent routing uses a pre-defined set of rules, or artificial intelligence, to determine the best place to send an inquiry. Learn more about Intelligent Routing

Transfer learning

Machine learning that focuses on storing knowledge gained while solving one problem and applying it to solve a different problem.

Neural network

Series of algorithms modeled after the neural networks that make up the human brain and nervous system. These algorithms learn using mathematical logic.