CHI EA 2013
Conference paper

We Need to Talk: HCI and the Delicate Topic of Spoken Language Interaction

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Speech and natural language remain our most natural form of interaction; yet the HCI community have been very timid about focusing their attention on designing and developing spoken language interaction techniques. This may be due to a widespread perception that perfect domain-independent speech recognition is an unattainable goal. Progress is continuously being made in the engineering and science of speech and natural language processing, however, and there is also recent research that suggests that many applications of speech require far less than 100% accuracy to be useful in many contexts. Engaging the CHI community now is timely – many recent commercial applications, especially in the mobile space, are already tapping the increased interest in and need for natural user interfaces (NUIs) by enabling speech interaction in their products. As such, the goal of this panel is to bring together interaction designers, usability researchers, and general HCI practitioners to discuss the opportunities and directions to take in designing more natural interactions based on spoken language, and to look at how we can leverage recent advances in speech processing in order to gain widespread acceptance of speech and natural language interaction.