I'm fine with 8. Besides, we're closing in on some of that Elon Musk Neural link tech so I think we'll be able to jump into VR worlds and really feel things soon (relatively) than later.
Also to keep from clogging up the embassy thread.
I'm not too concerned with deep conversations with an A.I.. I'm more concerned about how good it is at using environmental data as well as user input to augment its responses. That user data being; A user's facial expressions, their tone of voice, and their particular sentence structure and word use. Of course, getting an A.I. to recognize those variables and act on them appropriately is the real trick. I don't need it to understand exactly what I'm saying as long as it can get get the gist of what I'm saying. You could maybe even have preset responses for the user to choose from in a similar fashion to a Visual Novel but it'd be more intuitive if she could understand your natural voice and spontaneous speech. I'd call it Variable Response System
It could have a number of internal flags for the specific responses to be triggered. They don't have to deep or insightful as long as they have the illusion of matching the feelings of the user empathy wise.
For instance, a simple conversation starter might be "How was your day?"
If you provide a jovial response with a warm expression that the bot can recognize it will respond in kind. For a system like this, you wouldn't necessarily need any Vocaloid or text to speech nonsense if you're just wanting to have it show emotions. You could have a simple avatar that was capable of showing a range of emotions. For the "voice" you could have different tones that express certain feelings of speech with faster high pitched beeps to show happiness and excitement or slower lower-pitched beeps to show boredom or a melancholy kind of emotion.
The most intuitive option I think will probably be the simpler one. Unless you're needing deep conversations for discussions of philosophy or niche subjects there's no need to craft an overly complex dialogue tree or conversational A.I.. Not that it has to be bare-bones either but I think I'd prefer a dumb bot that can pass for smart instead of a smart bot that trips over it's own mental shoelaces and ends up sounding dumb or going on an inorganic and wayward rant that's more off-putting than insightful.
tl;dr- I want a digital assistant with some personality that is warm towards me. Even if her expressions are all mechanically controlled with numbers that's good enough to fool my monkey brain if she's behind a cute avatar.