Data Driven Dialog Management

Speaker: Alborz Geramifard , Amazon

Date: Tuesday, April 04, 2017

Time: 3:00 PM to 4:00 PM Note: all times are in the Eastern Time Zone

Public: Yes

Location: 32-G882 (Stata Center - Hewlett Room)

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Host: Jim Glass, MIT CSAIL

Contact: Marcia G. Davidson, 617-253-3049,

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Reminder Subject: TALK: Data Driven Dialog Management

Speech-based AI assistants such as Alexa and Google Now are becoming increasingly popular as a convenient way for people to interact with machines. However, users find interactions with their assistants more natural if conducted in a conversational manner, with multiple requests made and responses provided in a given dialog session. Creating robust dialog policies for conversational bots is challenging. This talk presents a data driven approach for dialog management through reinforcement learning. We first introduce a framework for building conversational bots and describe MovieBot as an implementation of the framework that was launched as an Alexa skill. We then describe approaches to creating the reward function based on sentiment analysis on text, using various techniques including Long Short Term Memory networks (LSTMs). The talk will end by discussing potential directions, and how all pieces of the puzzle can fit together.

Alborz Geramifard is currently a Machine Learning Manager at Amazon working on conversation AI for Alexa. Before joining Amazon, he was a postdoctoral associate at MIT's Laboratory for Information and Decision Systems. Alborz received his PhD from MIT working on representation learning and safe exploration in large scale sensitive sequential decision-making problems in 2012. He finished his MSc at University of Alberta in 2008, where he worked on data efficient online reinforcement learning techniques. His research interests lie at machine learning with the focus on reinforcement learning, natural language understanding, planning, and brain and cognitive sciences. Alborz was the recipient of the NSERC postgraduate scholarships 2010-2012 program.

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Created by Marcia G. Davidson Email at Wednesday, March 29, 2017 at 12:57 PM.