Carnegie Mellon University

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RI Special Seminar: Candace L. Sidner
Creating a Real-Time Conversation Manager with multiple time scales

Candace L. Sidner
Research Professor, Computer Science, Worcester Polytechnic Institute

January 30, 2013, 3:00 PM, GHC 6115

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My current research concerns a conversational agent that is always present in a user’s home, can converse and collaborate with a user over an extended period of time, and builds a relationship with the user during that time. To do so we have developed a software architecture that incorporates many types of conversations, and uses real-time sensors and effectors to interact as it converses. The architecture operates with control loops at three distinct time scales, from weeks down to milliseconds. I will motivate the requirements for this architecture, discuss its the novel aspects, and show how it is applied in a relational agent for isolated older adults.

Additional Information

Host: Reid Simmons

Appointments: Karen Widmaier (

Speaker Biography

My research concerns human communication and collaboration, and their application to agents, and interfaces, especially those using gesture, social behavior, speech, and natural language. Most recently my work has focused on collaboration and dialogue with humanoid robots about simple hosting tasks, and with on-screen agents for health behavior change.