6th SIGdial Workshop on Discourse and Dialogue

Lisbon, Portugal
September 2-3, 2005

Developing City Name Acquisition Strategies in Spoken Dialogue Systems Via User Simulation

Ed Filisko, Stephanie Seneff

MIT Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory, Cambridge, MA, USA

This paper describes our recent work on mechanisms for error recovery in spoken dialogue systems. We focus on the acquisition of city names and dates in the flight reservation domain. We are specifically interested in addressing the issue of acquiring out-of-vocabulary city names through a speak-and-spell mode subdialogue. In order to explore various dialogue strategies, we developed a user simulation system, which includes a configurable simulated user and a novel method of utterance generation. The latter utilizes a concatenative speech synthesizer, along with an existing corpus of dialogues, to produce a large variety of simulated inputs. The results from various simulated user configurations are presented, along with a discussion of how the simulated user facilitates the debugging of dialogue strategies and the discovery of situations unanticipated by the system developer.

Full Paper

Bibliographic reference.  Filisko, Ed / Seneff, Stephanie (2005): "Developing city name acquisition strategies in spoken dialogue systems via user simulation", In SIGdial6-2005, 144-154.