The role of voice input for human-machine communication

Philip R. Cohen, Sharon L. Oviatt

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

113 Citations (Scopus)


Optimism is growing that the near future will witness rapid growth in human-computer interaction using voice. System prototypes have recently been built that demonstrate speaker-independent real-time speech recognition, and understanding of naturally spoken utterances with vocabularies of 1000 to 2000 words, and larger. Already, computer manufacturers are building speech recognition subsystems into their new product lines. However, before this technology can be broadly useful, a substantial knowledge base is needed about human spoken language and performance during computer-based spoken interaction. This paper reviews application areas in which spoken interaction can play a significant role, assesses potential benefits of spoken interaction with machines, and compares voice with other modalities of human- computer interaction. It also discusses information that will be needed to build a firm empirical foundation for the design of future spoken and multimodal interfaces. Finally, it argues for a more systematic and scientific approach to investigating spoken input and performance with future language technology.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)9921-9927
Number of pages7
JournalProceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Issue number22
Publication statusPublished - 24 Oct 1995
Externally publishedYes

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