University of Cambridge > > CUED Speech Group Seminars > Physically Situated Spoken Language Interaction: Opportunities and Challenges

Physically Situated Spoken Language Interaction: Opportunities and Challenges

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Most research to date on spoken language interaction has focused on dialog with single users in limited, predefined contexts. Efforts in this space have led to the development and wide-scale deployment of telephony-based and, more recently, mobile voice-search applications. At the same time, numerous and important challenges in the realm of physically situated, open-world interaction have remained largely unaddressed.

In this talk, I will give an overview of the Situated Interaction project, a research effort which aims to address these challenges: the long term goal is to enable interactive systems to reason more deeply about their surroundings and embed spoken language interaction into the natural flow of everyday tasks, activities and collaborations. Specifically, I will outline a core set of computational models required for supporting spoken language interactions in physically situated settings, in dynamic, open, and relatively unconstrained environments. I will discuss some of the challenges these models bring to the fore in areas of representation, inference and decision making. In the process, I will highlight a number of on-going research efforts, and discuss and showcase several prototype systems we have developed to date.


Dan Bohus is a Researcher in the Adaptive Systems and Interaction Group at Microsoft Research. The central question that drives his long term research agenda is: how can we develop systems that naturally embed interaction and computation deeply into the flow of everyday tasks, activities, and collaborations? Specifically, in the last few years Dan’s work has focused on developing computational models for multiparty engagement, turn taking, interaction planning, and on addressing the challenges in inference and decision making that such models bring to the fore. Prior to joining Microsoft, Dan obtained his Ph.D. degree from Carnegie Mellon University, where his research focused on problems of dialog management and error handling in speech interfaces.

This talk is part of the CUED Speech Group Seminars series.

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