The Weekly Newsletter of MIT Linguistics

Language @MIT - 11/12 - Stephanie Seneff

This week is the kick-off installment of a new talk series, Language @MIT.

Title: Spoken Conversational Systems
Speaker: Stephanie Seneff, Spoken Language Systems group, CSAIL
When: Wednesday Nov 12, 3-4:30pm
Where: 26-310

The Spoken Language Systems group in CSAIL has been developing multimodal dialogue systems for over two decades. These systems typically provide information on a specific topic such as flight scheduling, weather, geographical information, calendar management, etc. Our goal has been to build systems that engage in natural spoken conversation, using a so-called “mixed-initiative” dialogue strategy. In this talk, I will first give a high level overview of system architecture and components. The main content of the talk will emphasize discourse and dialogue modelling, in the context of these spoken dialogue systems. I will also describe techniques used to stress test the system and guide system development, such as simulated dialogue interaction. I will mainly use the multimodal restaurant domain and the telephone-access flight scheduling domain as illustrative examples. Audio and video clips will be played to demonstrate system capabilities.