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SpeechTEK 2011 - Wednesday, August 10, 2011
SD301 – When Clients Become Designers
8:00 a.m - 8:45 a.m
Carrie Nelson, Principal Speech Software Engineering Consultant - Avaya

Working with a customer who is excited about the design process can be an asset to an IVR project, but not all customers have the caller experience as their first priority. How can the VUI designer guide the customer toward the best design choices for both their business and their callers? This discussion covers how to create a balance between business needs and caller needs.

SD302 – The Benefits and Drawbacks of Hosting
8:00 a.m - 8:45 a.m
Terry Saeger, Senior Vice President and General Manager - VoltDelta

What are the advantages and disadvantages of having a service company host your speech application verses maintaining the application on your own server? What are advantages and disadvantages of various hosting strategies? How do you choose a hosting service?

SD303 – Standards for Developing Speech Applications on Smartphones — What’s Needed?
8:00 a.m - 8:45 a.m
Matt Womer, Ubiquitous Web Activity Lead - W3C

It is difficult to author a speech application that runs on Google’s Android Apple’s iOS, Microsoft’s Windows Phone, and other smartphone operating systems. Should standards be developed to minimize this effort, or do stan dards stifle creativity? What standards are necessary to enable application developers to author once and deploy on multiple device types?

SD304 – How Humanlike Should Speech Systems Be?
8:00 a.m - 8:45 a.m
Vicki Broman, Manager of User Interface and Research Teams, CTI and Speech Solutions - eLoyalty® a TeleTech Company

There are many ways to write a script within the VUI design. This discussion focuses on the pros and cons of designing an IVR in the first person: the benefits, potential negative consequences, cost, and customer satisfaction.

A301 – Selecting a Voice for Your Speech Application
9:00 a.m - 10:00 a.m
MODERATOR: Vicki Broman, Manager of User Interface and Research Teams, CTI and Speech Solutions - eLoyalty® a TeleTech Company
Mike Monegan, Vice President Product Management - Cyara
Marcus Graham, CEO - GM Voices
Tim Walsh, President - Walsh Media

Selecting the voice that will speak to your customers via a speech self-service application is an important decision that is sometimes given little weight. The voice of an automated system is the most obvious embodiment of the characteristics an organization is trying to convey to customers. Join us as we discuss the benefits and limitations of various voice options available to organizations, including professional voice talents, amateur voices, and synthesized speech.

Break in the Exhibit Hall
10:00 a.m - 10:45 a.m
A302 – Recent Changes in Speech Patent Law
10:45 a.m - 11:45 a.m
MODERATOR: K.W.'Bill' Scholz, President - NewSpeech LLC
Mark Webbink, Visiting Professor and Executive Director - Center for Patent Innovations, New York Law School
Steven M. Hoffberg, Of Counsel - Tully Rinckey, PLLC
Marie Meteer, Director, Speech and NLP - Xtone
Mark Powell, Director, Communications Technology Area (TC2600) - USPTO

Laws surrounding the review and issuance of speech technology patents are undergoing significant changes recently, as has the process for evaluating patent over-reaching and infringement. Join the legal experts on this panel to learn the latest developments in laws affecting patents in speech technology.

A303 – Translating Speech Apps
12:00 p.m - 12:45 p.m
MODERATOR: Jeff Foley, Senior Manager, Solutions Marketing - Nuance Communications
Translating Prompts
Barbara Hawkins-Scott, Manager MediaVoice Services - Syntellect, Inc.
Phyllis Stallman, President - Translation Station

This talk, using real-world examples, examines the common pitfalls of translating application prompts. Strategies for successful translation into multiple languages and cultures are presented, such as creation and maintenance of the integrity of source text, consideration of cultural elements of both source and target language, selecting the best-qualified translator, why a single translator is preferred, how and when to use reverse translations, a glossary of company/industry terms for use by the translator, and concatenation of sentence fragments.

Localization of Speech Recognition in Spoken Dialogue Systems: How Machine Translation Can Make Our Lives Easier
David Suendermann, Principle Speech Scientist - Synchronoss

The localization of speech recognition for large-scale spoken dialogue systems can be a tremendous exercise. Usually, grammars are translated by a language expert, and new data is collected, transcribed, and annotated for statistical utterance classifiers — resulting in a time-consuming and expensive undertaking. Typically, though, a vast number of transcribed and annotated utterances exist for the source language. This talk proposes to translate such data via machine translation and use them along with their associated (original) annotations to train statistical grammars.

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Attendee Lunch
12:30 p.m - 1:45 p.m
B301 – Can Speech Change Channels?
9:00 a.m - 10:00 a.m
Walter Rolandi, Principal Usability Scientist - West Interactive
Phillip Hunter, Head of User Experience - Amazon Alexa Skills Kit

Speech technologies are either just hitting their stride and about to be the next big thing or are dying a slow death due to the newfound popularity of mobile applications on smartphones. Are mobile applications competition for speech technology or a platform that will expose more consumers to the wonders of speech? The experts on this panel have widely varying opinions on the place of speech in the world of mobile applications, so join us for a lively debate.

Break in the Exhibit Hall
10:00 a.m - 10:45 a.m
B302 – New Techniques for Usability Testing
10:45 a.m - 11:45 a.m
MODERATOR: Jim Milroy, Human Factors Solutions Consultant - West Interactive Services
How Much Would You Like to Pay?
Julie Underdahl, Senior User Interface Designer - Genesys

This session explores the results of a usability test focused on making payments in a speech application. The testing methodology, goals, results, and
findings are presented. Both new and seasoned designers can benefit from this session, which provides useful and surprising data for anyone who has
designed payment features in an IVR.

WOZ Testing in the 21st Century
Leslie Carroll Walker, Senior Manager, UI Design, Global Professional Services, Customer Interaction Technology - Convergys

In recent years, Wizard of Oz (WOZ) testing has fallen out of favor, yielding to full-blown usability testing of coded applications. At the same time, cost-conscious IVR teams have increasingly taken their chances and skipped usability, despite the risk. Perhaps it’s time to resurrect the Wizard, warts and all! This session covers the advantages and disadvantages of WOZ, as well as practical advice on conducting contemporary WOZ tests successfully and inexpensively.

B303 – AVIxD PANEL—Where Does Speech Make Sense?
12:00 p.m - 12:45 p.m
Jonathan Bloom, Voice User Interface Designer - Jibo, Inc.
Phillip Hunter, Head of User Experience - Amazon Alexa Skills Kit

Like any technology, there are certain cases in which speech technology pro vides clear benefits over other modalities and other cases in which speech may not be the appropriate choice. The cases where speech is, and is not, a good fit have historically been poorly and incompletely defined. This session presents the results of a workshop conducted by the Association for Voice Interaction Design (AVIxD) that aims to correct this problem by rigorously and comprehensively defining the contexts in which the use of speech technolo gies makes sense.

Sponsored By
Attendee Lunch
12:30 p.m - 1:45 p.m
C301 – Speech Application Tuning Considerations
9:00 a.m - 10:00 a.m
MODERATOR: Dan York, Director of Conversations - Voxeo, an Aspect Company
Pete Slabek, Voice Portal Operations Specialist - United Healthcare
Mark W Stallings, Managing Partner, VUI Design Practice - Forty 7 Ronin Inc.
Rich Garrett, Senior Solutions Consultant - [24]7
Greg Johnston, Senior IT Manager - IVR, Information Technologies - DISH Network

Tuning speech applications is considered to be a dark and mysterious practice that takes place in a remote room behind closed doors. The presenters want to pull back the curtain and, by using real customer examples and data, show the tools, processes, and techniques they employ to tune speech applications. Also discussed are the key points to consider when tuning, including tuning without a budget.

Break in the Exhibit Hall
10:00 a.m - 10:45 a.m
C302 – Case Studies
10:45 a.m - 11:45 a.m
MODERATOR: Larry Murphy, Senior Manager, RTM Consulting & Professional Services - Convergys
Your Organization Needs a Superhero: The Voice Portal Specialist
Helen VanScoy, Director, User Interface Design - Performance Technology Partners
Jessica Kaufman, Lead Voice Channel Specialist, Voice Channel, Operations Support - Blue Shield of California

The position of voice portal specialist is the champion for the caller and serves as a liaison between the business and technical units, spanning various departments. This case study follows Blue Shield of California’s journey in IVR design and development during the past 5 years. It outlines the implementing and refining of the BSC speech-enabled self-service phone system and the creation of the position of voice portal specialist, focused on creating a balance between cost-saving automation and customer satisfaction.

Transforming Customer Service With Speech Analytics
Lori Schmidt, Business Analyst - Pitney Bowes

In 2006, Pitney Bowes invested in a suite software applications, including speech analytics. The speech analytics tool directs users to calls related to
particular topics and allows them to quickly listen to the relevant aspects of the call. Using this functionality, Pitney Bowes has been able to reduce call
transfers, address issues with fee waivers, and identify top issues regarding USPS rate-change calls into the call centers.

C303 – Create and Manage Customer-Centric IVR Applications
12:00 p.m - 12:45 p.m
MODERATOR: Monique M. Bozeman, Analyst/Consultant - Monique Bozeman Consulting

Panelists address the ins and outs and key lessons learned in developing and deploying successful speech applications. What were the decision criteria in application design and technology selection? What worked? What didn’t? Which success metrics were used? We discuss the business, technical, and political challenges of designing and implementing applications that are both customer-centric and operationally practical with end users from several vertical industries.

Users First: A Customer-Centric Approach to Open Speech Recognition for Banking and Finance
Sam Jackel, Project Director, Contact Centre Transformation - The Westpac Group

This presentation covers successful customer-centric contact center voice deployments at several of the largest financial institutions in Australia. Learn the most critical aspects of application development, implementation, and change management, and how a customer-centric approach — coupled with a technical design, giving the business full control of the customer experience — yields staggering results within 6 months.

The Impact of Simulation, Testing, and Real-Time Customer Experience Monitoring of IVR Apps
Alok Kulkarni, CEO - Cyara

You’ve spent time and money developing the best applications for your business, but is the application performing as designed? What needs to be done to ensure exemplary performance under load, stress, soak, business-as-usual, and disaster recovery situations? Are your applications and systems delivering the intended customer experience? How do you know? Discussed are several case studies of customers at some of the largest global contact centers who’ve successfully approached these concerns across several verticals involving IVR, voice biometrics authentication, and speech applications.

Sponsored By
Attendee Lunch
12:30 p.m - 1:45 p.m
D301 – Innovative Uses of Speech Technology
9:00 a.m - 10:00 a.m
MODERATOR: David L Thomson, VP Speech Technology - CaptionCall
Using Speech Applications in Robotics
Brad Kayton, CEO - Vgo Communications, Inc.

The use of robotics, such as the Vgo telepresence robot, is becoming widespread. These types of robots basically represent the user in remote locations. The robot uses text-to-speech synthesis to communicate with those around it. Find out how managers, executives, and students use the robot to navigate through a workspace and interact with its inhabitants.

Language Learning With Speech and 3D Video
K.W.'Bill' Scholz, President - NewSpeech LLC

The benefit of using speech-enabled animated video for teaching language has been well-demonstrated. Animated video captures the attention of the
student, and the professionally recorded audio track provides a pronunciation target, which students attempt to match. Speech recognition provides
an indication of their degree of mastery. Combining 3D video with speech technology provides a more compelling vehicle for language instruction.
This presentation focuses on techniques for integrating cloud-based speech technology with 3D video as a platform for teaching language over the public internet.

Break in the Exhibit Hall
10:00 a.m - 10:45 a.m
D302 – Improving Speech Input
10:45 a.m - 11:45 a.m
MODERATOR: Peter Voss, CEO - Smart Action Company, LLC
Measuring the Impact of Headset Design on Recognition Accuracy
David L Thomson, VP Speech Technology - CaptionCall

This session describe a series of experiments to quantify the impact of headset features on speech recognition accuracy. These experiments, conducted both in the lab and on the road, show that improved perceptual quality from noise reduction, as judged by human listeners, does not necessarily translate into higher recognition accuracy.

Hearing the Whole Voice: How Wideband Audio Dramatically Improves Speech Recognition
R.J. Auburn, Chief Technology Officer - Voxeo, an Aspect Company

This session explains the difference between traditional narrowband audio and wideband audio, outlines the current state of available wideband audio options, and discusses what you need to consider when evaluating wideband audio for both servers and clients/devices. Participants will leave with an understanding of how and where they can use wideband audio to improve their speech applications and create better customer experiences.

D303 – Smart Synthetic Agents
12:00 p.m - 12:45 p.m
MODERATOR: R.J. Auburn, Chief Technology Officer - Voxeo, an Aspect Company
Speech IVR With a Brain
Peter Voss, CEO - Smart Action Company, LLC

This talk describes a new technology that significantly increases the base functionality of speech IVRs. A dedicated intelligence engine, or “brain,” manages each live conversation. This engine integrates a number of general capabilities designed to offer sophisticated yet robust natural language self-service. These capabilities include dynamically tuning statistical language model speech recognition, natural language parsing and interpretation, built-in conversational skills and knowledge, and short- and long-term memory, as well as other cognitive abilities. Several practical examples of this technology are presented.

Personal Agents Get Smarter: Controlling Conversational Chaos
Emmett Coin, Speech Scientist - ejTalk

The assistive agent designed for Baby Boomers and beyond illustrates the various challenges and solutions pertaining to the idea of natural conversation. Problems such as adaptation to task familiarity, conversational move differences as a function of domain distance and history, and the automatic modulation of transitional pleasantries are discussed. Learn about the dilemmas ahead for advanced dialogue systems and how to solve them in a modular, comprehensible way.

Sponsored By
Attendee Lunch
12:30 p.m - 1:45 p.m
Prescription: What’s Needed to Move Speech Forward?
2:15 p.m - 3:15 p.m
Susan L. Hura, Principal - SpeechUsability
James A. Larson, Vice President - Larson Technical Services

With the IVR market becoming saturated, industry consolidation, and the remaining customer distaste for automated IVR systems, what’s needed to move the speech industry forward? Speech technology holds the promise of enabling customers and businesses to connect in a timely, effective, and engaging manner, but how can businesses achieve this goal? The hard reality is that the industry must embrace change or become obsolete. The days of separate voice-only and visual-only interactions are gone. An organization must enable customers to get the same information via any channel (IVR, web, mobile applications, social networks, or face-to-face interaction) and enable them to switch channels seamlessly without losing information. This closing keynote presentation reviews the best ideas presented at the conference and adds suggestions for how to improve the interaction between customers and businesses in this smartphone age.

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