Technical Report CS0556

Title: A Protocol for Efficient Man-Machine Interfaces (also Research Thesis)
Authors: Jacob Ukelson
Abstract: This thesis investigates the division of interactive systems into application and dialogue components. The focal point of our research was the design of a dialogue manager for large dialogues so as to bother the user as little as possibie. A framework for defIning preciseiy what is meant by bother is used to propose the formal definition of the term efficient dialogue. An efficient dialogue is defined as a dialogue which displays a large amount of information on the screen while keeping ??? context, and by abstaining from redundant questions. The model describes the division on a ??? dialogue manager into several subtasks: 1. dialogue definition language 2. application to dialogue manager interface 3. dialogue manager a. dialogue logic b. screen manager The application to dialogue manager,interface can actually b??? appilation of the dialogue definition language which is then executed by the dialogue manager in order to obtain input from ihe user.

A prototype dialogue management system is constructed to implement these ideas. The dialogue designer uses the dialogue definition language to give a high-level description of the dialogue. From this description the interaction is automatically created. The dialogue manager has been written in C under the UNIX operating system. The presentation subsystem was implemented in C on a SUN workstation under the UNIX operating system.

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