Maike Paetzel


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Estimating Subjective Crowd-Evaluations as an Additional Objective to Improve Natural Language Generation
Jakob Nyberg | Maike Paetzel | Ramesh Manuvinakurike
Proceedings of the Workshop on Human Evaluation of NLP Systems (HumEval)

Human ratings are one of the most prevalent methods to evaluate the performance of NLP (natural language processing) algorithms. Similarly, it is common to measure the quality of sentences generated by a natural language generation model using human raters. In this paper we argue for exploring the use of subjective evaluations within the process of training language generation models in a multi-task learning setting. As a case study, we use a crowd-authored dialogue corpus to fine-tune six different language generation models. Two of these models incorporate multi-task learning and use subjective ratings of lines as part of an explicit learning goal. A human evaluation of the generated dialogue lines reveals that utterances generated by the multi-tasking models were subjectively rated as the most typical, most moving the conversation forward, and least offensive. Based on these promising first results, we discuss future research directions for incorporating subjective human evaluations into language model training and to hence keep the human user in the loop during the development process.


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RDG-Map: A Multimodal Corpus of Pedagogical Human-Agent Spoken Interactions.
Maike Paetzel | Deepthi Karkada | Ramesh Manuvinakurike
Proceedings of the Twelfth Language Resources and Evaluation Conference

This paper presents a multimodal corpus of 209 spoken game dialogues between a human and a remote-controlled artificial agent. The interactions involve people collaborating with the agent to identify countries on the world map as quickly as possible, which allows studying rapid and spontaneous dialogue with complex anaphoras, disfluent utterances and incorrect descriptions. The corpus consists of two parts: 8 hours of game interactions have been collected with a virtual unembodied agent online and 26.8 hours have been recorded with a physically embodied robot in a research lab. In addition to spoken audio recordings available for both parts, camera recordings and skeleton-, facial expression- and eye-gaze tracking data have been collected for the lab-based part of the corpus. In this paper, we introduce the pedagogical reference resolution game (RDG-Map) and the characteristics of the corpus collected. We also present an annotation scheme we developed in order to study the dialogue strategies utilized by the players. Based on a subset of 330 minutes of interactions annotated so far, we discuss initial insights into these strategies as well as the potential of the corpus for future research.

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Nontrivial Lexical Convergence in a Geography-Themed Game
Amanda Bergqvist | Ramesh Manuvinakurike | Deepthi Karkada | Maike Paetzel
Proceedings of the 21th Annual Meeting of the Special Interest Group on Discourse and Dialogue

The present study aims to examine the prevalent notion that people entrain to the vocabulary of a dialogue system. Although previous research shows that people will replace their choice of words with simple substitutes, studies using more challenging substitutions are sparse. In this paper, we investigate whether people adapt their speech to the vocabulary of a dialogue system when the system’s suggested words are not direct synonyms. 32 participants played a geography-themed game with a remote-controlled agent and were primed by referencing strategies (rather than individual terms) introduced in follow-up questions. Our results suggest that context-appropriate substitutes support convergence and that the convergence has a lasting effect within a dialogue session if the system’s wording is more consistent with the norms of the domain than the original wording of the speaker.


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Toward incremental dialogue act segmentation in fast-paced interactive dialogue systems
Ramesh Manuvinakurike | Maike Paetzel | Cheng Qu | David Schlangen | David DeVault
Proceedings of the 17th Annual Meeting of the Special Interest Group on Discourse and Dialogue


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“So, which one is it?” The effect of alternative incremental architectures in a high-performance game-playing agent
Maike Paetzel | Ramesh Manuvinakurike | David DeVault
Proceedings of the 16th Annual Meeting of the Special Interest Group on Discourse and Dialogue


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A Multimodal Corpus of Rapid Dialogue Games
Maike Paetzel | David Nicolas Racca | David DeVault
Proceedings of the Ninth International Conference on Language Resources and Evaluation (LREC'14)

This paper presents a multimodal corpus of spoken human-human dialogues collected as participants played a series of Rapid Dialogue Games (RDGs). The corpus consists of a collection of about 11 hours of spoken audio, video, and Microsoft Kinect data taken from 384 game interactions (dialogues). The games used for collecting the corpus required participants to give verbal descriptions of linguistic expressions or visual images and were specifically designed to engage players in a fast-paced conversation under time pressure. As a result, the corpus contains many examples of participants attempting to communicate quickly in specific game situations, and it also includes a variety of spontaneous conversational phenomena such as hesitations, filled pauses, overlapping speech, and low-latency responses. The corpus has been created to facilitate research in incremental speech processing for spoken dialogue systems. Potentially, the corpus could be used in several areas of speech and language research, including speech recognition, natural language understanding, natural language generation, and dialogue management.