Building a Collaborative Interface Agent

  • C. L. Sidner
Part of the Philosophical Studies Series book series (PSSP, volume 72)


At a time when intelligent software agents are the buzz word of every media article, agents that collaborate with people have received very little attention, even in research. Perhaps this lack of attention results from researchers’ fear of the formidable task of creating an agent that understands natural language. To understand agents that can collaborate with users, rather than being their slaves, we are creating a software agent that communicates and collaborates with a user by adhering to established principles of multi-person human collaboration and communication but without using natural language.


Software Agent Collaborative Plan Interface Agent Conversational Partner Mutual Belief 
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.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. Cohen, P. (1994) An Open Agent Architecture, in Working Notes of the AAAI Spring Symposium Series, AAAI Press.Google Scholar
  2. Cohen, P. (1992) The role of natural language in a multimodal interface, in Proceedings of the Fifth Annual Symposium on User Interface Software and Technology, ACM Press, New York, pp. 143–149.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Grosz, B.J. (1977) The representation and use of focus in dialogue understanding, Technical Report 151, Artificial Intelligence Center. SRI International, Menlo Park. California.Google Scholar
  4. Grosz, B.J., and Hirschberg, J. (1992) Some intonational characteristics of discourse structure, in Proceedings of the International Conference on Spoken Language Processing, Banff, Alberta, Canada, pp 429–432.Google Scholar
  5. Grosz, B.J., and Kraus, S. (1993) Collaborative plans for group activities, in Proceedings of IJCAI-13, Chambery, France, September, pp. 367–373.Google Scholar
  6. Grosz, B.J., and Sidner, C.L. (1986) Attention, intentions, and the structure of discourse, Computational Linguistics 12(3), 175–204.Google Scholar
  7. Grosz, B.J., and Sidner, C.L. (1990) Plans for discourse, in P.R. Cohen, J.L. Morgan, and M.E. Pollack (eds.), Intentions in Communication, MIT Press.Google Scholar
  8. Kowtko, J.C., and Price, P. (1989) Data Collection and analysis in the Air Travel Planning Domain, in DAPRA Workshop Proceedings. Cape Cod, MA.Google Scholar
  9. Lambert, L., and Carberry, S. (1991) A tripartite plan-based model of dialogue, in Proceedings of the 29th Annual Meeting of the ACL, Berkeley, CA.Google Scholar
  10. Lochbaum, K.E. (1994) Using Collaborative plans to Model the Intentional Structure of Discourse, Technical Report TR-25–94. Aiken Computational Laboratory, Harvard University, Cambridge, MA.Google Scholar
  11. Lochbaum, K.E. (1995) The use of knowledge preconditions in language processing, in Proceedings of the IJCAI-95, Montreal, Canada.Google Scholar
  12. Pollack, M. (1990) Plans as Complex Mental Attitudes, in P.R. Cohen, J.L. Morgan, and M.E. Pollack (eds.), Intentions in Communication, MIT Press.Google Scholar
  13. Rich, C. (1994) Negotiation in collaborative activity: an implementation experiment, Knowledge-Based Systems 7(4),268–270.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Rich, C. (1995) Window Sharing with Collaborative Interface Agents, Mitsubishi Electric Research Labs TR-95–12, Cambridge, MA.Google Scholar
  15. Schneiderman, B. (1995) Perspectives: Looking for the Bright Side of User Interface Agents, in Interactions: New Visions of Human-Computer Interaction.Google Scholar
  16. Sidner, C.L. (1994a) An artificial discourse language for collaborative negotiation, in Proceedings of AAAI-94, AAAI Press/MIT Press, Cambridge.Google Scholar
  17. Sidner, C.L. (1994b) Negotiation in collaborative activity: a discourse analysis, Knowledge-Based Systems 7(4), 265–267.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Stein, A., and Thiel, U. (1993) A Conversational Model of Multimodal Interaction, in Proceedings of the 11th National Conference on AI, AAAI Press/MIT Press. Cambridge, pp 283–288.Google Scholar
  19. Yanklovich, N. (1994) Talking vs. Taking: Speech Access to Remote Computers, in Proceedings of the ACM CHI Conference, ACM, New York, pp 275–276.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 1998

Authors and Affiliations

  • C. L. Sidner
    • 1
  1. 1.Lotus Development Corp.CambridgeUSA

Personalised recommendations