Speech Dialogue Systems and Natural Language Processing

  • Holger Quast
  • Robert Bosch
Part of the Springer Series in Information Sciences book series (SSINF, volume 35)


If language is the dress of thought as Johnson claims, speech is its genuine overcoat. Traditionally, speech and language have been studied separately, the former as an acoustic phenomenon, the latter as representation of meaning, symbolized by words. Slow but steady progress in the field of speech recognition together with increasing computational power made it possible to use our natural verbal communication channel as front end for speech dialogue systems, and moreover have allowed the first applications of this kind to step out of the laboratories into the real world. During the second half of the nineties, actual products started to appear that were more than mere technological gadgets: dictation programs for word processors, voice dialing for mobile phones, and dialogue engines that carry out tasks such as air travel reservation, banking, and even translation over the phone. While these devices are often still cumbersome to work with, they bear the potential of the most natural human-machine interface. Spoken language dialogue programs provide useful services where human operators would be too expensive, they are an invaluable help for physically incapacitated people, and allow to control devices where hands-free operation is safer and speech input has a higher data throughput than a tactile interface. This chapter introduces some instrumental concepts and techniques from the field of language processing, and its application, natural language speech dialogue systems.


Speech Recognition Noun Phrase Natural Language Processing Automatic Speech Recognition Word Type 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2004

Authors and Affiliations

  • Holger Quast
    • 1
  • Robert Bosch
    • 2
  1. 1.Drittes Physikalisches InstitutUniversität GöttingenGermany
  2. 2.GmbH Research and DevelopmentGermany

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