Over the past few years the CES trade show has become a familiar post-holidays pilgrimage for many of the country's biggest marketers. They see the event as a way to get a sneak peek at the latest tech gadgets and technologies that can help them engage with their customers. This year marketing executives from companies such as Coca-Cola, Unilever, Johnson & Johnson, Campbell Soup and PepsiCo Inc. made their way to Las Vegas for the gathering. The convention was jam-packed with everything from self-driving cars to robots that play chess to Procter & Gamble's air-freshener spray that can connect with Alphabet Inc.'s Nest home to automatically release pleasant scents in the home. But there was one category that seemed to especially win over marketers: virtual assistants.
Dhananjay Motwani is thinking of an animal, and his 20 Questions opponent is, question by question, trying to figure out what it is. "Is it larger than a microwave oven?" "Yes." "No." "Is it a vegetarian?" "Yes." What's impressive here isn't that the questioner is a computer; that's old hat. It's that the machine and Motwani are chatting in his blue Hyundai Sonata, trundling along one of Silicon Valley's many freeways.
Our modern age is rife with questions that could have been (indeed, often were) posed by genre writers such as Ray Bradbury, H. G. Wells or Philip K. Dick. We'd like to pose a few of our own: Is it truly safe to put our lives in the "hands" of self-driving cars? Is Amazon's Alexa spying on our idle chatter? What happens when smart machines become smarter than the people who operate them? Many of the most critical questions brought about by advancing technology are related to work.
Multimodal mobile dialog systems face new challenges which do not exist in traditional spoken dialog systems. A mobile dialog system should provide robust task management during network loss, and intelligent assistance in new environments. To provide these capabilities, a system must sense changes in the user environment, and communicate them effectively to the user. In the field of human-computer interaction, such systems are referred to as context-aware systems. Two possible approaches have been explored: in one, the user requests information when needed (information pull), and in the other, the system automatically offers relevant information (information push).