Title: MASCOTS II: A Dialog Manager in General Interface for Speech Input and Output
Author: Yoichi Yamashita, Hideaki Yoshida, Takashi Hiramatsu, Yasuo Nomura and Riichiro Mizoguchi
Reference: IEICE Transactions on Information and Systems, Vol.E76-D, No.1, pp.74-83.

Abstract: This paper describes a general interface system for speech input and output and a dialog management system, MASCOTS, which is a component of the interface system. The authors designed this interface system, paying attention to its generality; that is, it is not dependent on the problem-solving system it is connected to. The previous version of MASCOTS dealt with the dialog processing only for the speech input based on the SR-plans. We extend MASCOTS to cover the speech output to the user. The revised version of MASCOTS, named MASCOTS II, makes use of topic information given by the topic packet network (TPN) which models the topic transitions in dialogs. Input and output messages are described with the concept representation based on the case structure. For the speech input, prediction of user's utterance is focused and enhanced by using the TPN. The TPN compensates for the shortages of the SR-plan and improves the accuracy of prediction as to stimulus utterances of the user. As the dialog processing in the speech output, MASCOTS II extracts emphatic words and restores missing words to the output message if necessary, e.g., in order to notify the results of speech recognition. The basic mechanisms of the SR-plan and the TPN are shared between the speech input and output processes in MASCOTS II.
Keywords: speech interface, dialog management, topic, spoken dialog, utterance prediction