A Madison-based software company called Polco is conducting field testing for a new conversational AI application designed to support public sector decision-making.

The business yesterday announced the new AI tool known as “Polly,” described as a conversational data analyst. It can be accessed through the company’s existing civic engagement and analytics platform, which is used in hundreds of communities, according to its website.

CEO Nick Mastronardi says the new tool is “changing the data analysis game by effectively adding a digital employee” to the city’s staff, who can track data metrics, recommend budget priorities and write strategic plans. As a learning system, it will also become smarter over time, Mastronardi said yesterday in a statement.

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