(12) United States Patent
Junqua et al.
(io) Patent No.: US 6,233,561 Bl (45) Date of Patent: May 15,2001
(54) METHOD FOR GOAL-ORIENTED SPEECH TRANSLATION IN HAND-HELD DEVICES USING MEANING EXTRACTION AND DIALOGUE
(75) Inventors: Jean-Claude Junqua; Roland Kuhn;
Matteo Contolini; Murat Karaorman;
Ken Field; Michael Galler, all of
Santa Barbara; Yi Zhao, Goleta, all of
(73) Assignee: Matsushita Electric Industrial Co.,
Ltd., Osaka (JP)
( * ) Notice: Subject to any disclaimer, the term of this patent is extended or adjusted under 35 U.S.C. 154(b) by 0 days.
(21) Appl. No.: 09/290,628
(22) Filed: Apr. 12, 1999
(51) Int. C I. G10L 15/22
(52) U.S. CI 704/277; 704/257; 704/275
(58) Field of Search 704/200, 257,
704/277, 270, 272, 274, 275, 251, 255, 246, 250, 8, 4, 2, 9
(56) References Cited
U.S. PATENT DOCUMENTS
5,418,717 * 5/1995 Su et al 364/419.08
5,642,519 * 6/1997 Martin 704/255
5,839,106 * 11/1998 Bellegarda 704/257
6,154,720 * 11/2000 Onishi et al 704/2
6,173,279 * 1/2001 Levin et al 707/5
FOREIGN PATENT DOCUMENTS
2000250589-A * 9/2000 (JP) G06F/17/27
Kuhn, Roland and De Mori, Renato; Spoken Dialogues with Computers; 1998; pp. 485-522.
* cited by examiner
Primary Examiner—Richemond Dorvil
(74) Attorney, Agent, or Firm—Harness, Dickey & Pierce,
A computer-implemented method and apparatus is provided for processing a spoken request from a user. A speech recognizer converts the spoken request into a digital format. A frame data structure associates semantic components of the digitized spoken request with predetermined slots. The slots are indicative of data which are used to achieve a predetermined goal. A speech understanding module which is connected to the speech recognizer and to the frame data structure determines semantic components of the spoken request. The slots are populated based upon the determined semantic components. A dialog manager which is connected to the speech understanding module may determine at least one slot which is unpopulated based upon the determined semantic components and in a preferred embodiment may provide confirmation of the populated slots. A computer generated-request is formulated in order for the user to provide data related to the unpopulated slot. The method and apparatus are well-suited (but not limited) to use in a hand-held speech translation device.
31 Claims, 7 Drawing Sheets