Date: 23 Oct 2001

The IntelliMedia WorkBench-An Environment for Building Multimodal Systems

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Abstract

Intelligent MultiMedia (IntelliMedia) focuses on the computer processing and understanding of signal and symbol input from at least speech, text and visual images in terms of semantic representations. We have developed a general suite of tools in the form of a software and hardware platform called “Chameleon” that can be tailored to conducting IntelliMedia in various application domains. Chameleon has an open distributed processing architecture and currently includes ten agent modules: blackboard, dialogue manager, domain model, gesture recogniser, laser system, microphone array, speech recogniser, speech synthesiser, natural language processor, and a distributed Topsy learner. Most of the modules are programmed in C and C++ and are glued together using the Dacs communications system. In effect, the blackboard, dialogue manager and Dacs form the kernel of Chameleon. Modules can communicate with each other and the blackboard which keeps a record of interactions over time via semantic representations in frames. Inputs to Chameleon can include synchronised spoken dialogue and images and outputs include synchronised laser pointing and spoken dialogue. An initial prototype application of Chameleon is an IntelliMedia Work-Bench where a user will be able to ask for information about things (e.g. 2D/3D models, pictures, objects, gadgets, people, or whatever) on a physical table. The current domain is a Campus Information System for 2D building plans which provides information about tenants, rooms and routes and can answer questions like Whose office is this? and Show me the route from Paul Mc Kevitt’s office to Paul Dalsgaard’s office. in real time. Chameleon and the IntelliMedia WorkBench are ideal for testing integrated signal and symbol processing of language and vision for the future of SuperinformationhighwayS.