Article | Proceedings from the 3rd European Symposium on Multimodal Communication, Dublin, September 17-18, 2015 | Starting a Conversation with Strangers in Virtual Reykjavik: Explicit Announcement of Presence
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Title:
Starting a Conversation with Strangers in Virtual Reykjavik: Explicit Announcement of Presence
Author:
Stefán Ólafsson: CADIA, Reykjavik University, Iceland Branislav Bédi: University of Iceland, Iceland Hafdïs Erla Erla Helgdóttir: CADIA, Reykjavik University, Iceland Birna Arnbjörnsdóttir: University of Iceland, Iceland Hannes Högni Vilhjálmsson: CADIA, Reykjavik University, Iceland
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Full text (pdf)
Year:
2015
Conference:
Proceedings from the 3rd European Symposium on Multimodal Communication, Dublin, September 17-18, 2015
Issue:
105
Article no.:
011
Pages:
62-68
No. of pages:
7
Publication type:
Abstract and Fulltext
Published:
2016-09-16
ISBN:
978-91-7685-679-6
Series:
Linköping Electronic Conference Proceedings
ISSN (print):
1650-3686
ISSN (online):
1650-3740
Publisher:
Linköping University Electronic Press, Linköpings universitet


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Virtual Reykjavik is an Icelandic language and culture training application for foreigners learning Icelandic. In this video game-like environment, the user is asked to solve given tasks in the game and in order to complete them he/she must interact with the characters, e.g. by conversing with them on context- specific topics. To make this a reality, a model for how natural conversations start in a specific situations has been developed, based on data from that same situation in real life: a stranger asking another stranger for directions to a particular place in downtown Reykjavik. This involved defining a multimodal an- notation scheme, outlining the communicative functions and behaviors associated with them. However, current annotation schemes lacked the appropriate function for this specific case, which lead us to finding and proposing an appropriate commu-nicative function – the Explicit Announcement of Presence. A study was conducted to explore and better understand how conversation is initiated in first encounters between people who do not know each other. Human-to-human conversations were analyzed for the purpose of modelling a realistic conversation between human users and virtual agents. Results from the study have led to the inclusion of the communicative function in the human-to-agent conversation system. By playing the game the learners will be exposed to situations that they may encounter in real life, and therefore the interaction is based on real life data, rather than textbook examples. We believe that this application will help bridge the gap from the class room to the real world, preparing learners to initiate conversations with real Icelandic speakers.

Keywords: Explicit Announcement of Presence, communicative function, human-agent interaction, embodied conversational agent, multimodal communication, natural language, social behavior

Proceedings from the 3rd European Symposium on Multimodal Communication, Dublin, September 17-18, 2015

Author:
Stefán Ólafsson, Branislav Bédi, Hafdïs Erla Erla Helgdóttir, Birna Arnbjörnsdóttir, Hannes Högni Vilhjálmsson
Title:
Starting a Conversation with Strangers in Virtual Reykjavik: Explicit Announcement of Presence
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Proceedings from the 3rd European Symposium on Multimodal Communication, Dublin, September 17-18, 2015

Author:
Stefán Ólafsson, Branislav Bédi, Hafdïs Erla Erla Helgdóttir, Birna Arnbjörnsdóttir, Hannes Högni Vilhjálmsson
Title:
Starting a Conversation with Strangers in Virtual Reykjavik: Explicit Announcement of Presence
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