April 9-11, 2018 | Renaissance Washington DC Hotel

Focus Areas

Intelligent Assistants

Monday, April 9, 2018

A101 - Intro to Intelligent Assistants

10:45 a.m. - 11:30 a.m.
Michael McTear, Professor, Ulster University

Intelligent assistants are part of our daily lives, thanks to recent advances in artificial intelligence and spoken language technology. How can we make these assistants interact successfully with us? View a short demo of how to build a simple interaction. Learn about the basic concepts—skills, intents, and entities. Consider the importance of extensive training and testing and what we can learn from the experiences of a generation of voice user interface designers.

A102 - Being Smart About Developing Intelligent Assistants

11:45 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.
Dr. William Meisel, President, TMA Associates

Digital assistants using natural language are a major trend, but one that presents significant challenges for companies that want to adopt the technology. There are call centers, text chatbots, mobile apps using speech or text, home speakers and automobiles with only a voice option, and more. Where should one start? What are options to develop natural language technology that doesn’t frustrate the user? This talk presents a strategy that can reduce the challenge and result in truly smart digital assistants.

A103 - Product Managing the Launch of an Alexa Skill

2:00 p.m. - 2:45 p.m.
Navya Nayaki Yelloji, Product Manager, Voice Platforms, Gannett

What does it take to launch a far field voice experience such as an Amazon Alexa skill? Yelloji walks through the various steps that take the product manager from engaging with field and market researchers, from identifying the initial functional requirements for the skill to engaging with UX designers, developers, voice experiences testers, beta testers, and then marketers through the launch and the post launch of the skill. She provides specific examples and shares learnings from real client deployments of conversational experiences.

A104 - New Approaches for Designing Chatbots

3:00 p.m. - 3:45 p.m.
Dr. Andreas Volmer, Director, Product Management, Aspect Software

Machine learning techniques based on sample phrases has shortcomings: large sets of data samples and limited ability to control the tuning process. An alternative approach consists of a more rules-based approach that relies on deep understanding of the syntax and semantics of users’ messages. We compare these approaches and show how a linguistics-driven approach can be both easy to manage and result in better accuracy and control.

Tuesday, April 10, 2018

A202 - Case Study: Transformative Power of Conversational Customer Care

11:45 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.
Quinn Agen, Global Business Development, Omilia

Conversational speech in the contact center is not the next big thing—it’s already here! Learn how one of North America’s largest financial services companies moved from a high-performing touch-tone caller experience to a true artificial intelligence speech application that moves the conversation beyond the traditional, “How can I help you?” natural language application with directed speech. This session provides a real-world example of conversational speech, lessons learned, and actual contact center benefits.

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