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Praise for the Art and Business of Speech Recognition

Praise for the Art and Business of Speech Recognition

“Blade Kotelly's delightful book provides a well-grounded and highly readable introduction to creating automated dialogue systems using speech recognition. Kotelly takes his extensive experience and training and distills it for beginning speech designers and their managers. He rightfully reminds us that there is art in designing any successful product. The technology only makes the product possible; it doesn't make it usable.

The Art and Business of Speech Recognition brings us key concepts in voice user interface and application design—concepts critical to making the system acceptable to a user. Yet Kotelly does so in a way that makes those concepts easy to absorb, with many examples from real applications. Page after page produces the “Aha!” that makes an important principle stick.

Anyone who has responsibility for a system that will conduct an automated speech dialogue with the public should read this book. The public will be well served.

—WILLIAM MEISEL
PRESIDENT, TMA ASSOCIATES
PUBLISHER/EDITOR, SPEECH RECOGNITION UPDATE NEWSLETTER

“Forget the technology, and don't even think about protocols, until you read this book! Usability is what drives the ROI on speech systems, and Blade takes you there. You can buy this book and save yourself and your company a bundle of time and money, or pay the price later. Blade has designed some of the biggest systems out there, and he's put it all in this book. Grab on to his experience before you start writing your first app!”

—MARK PLAKIAS
SENIOR VICE PRESIDENT, COMMUNICATIONS & INFRASTRUCTURE
THE KELSEY GROUP

This book is as engaging and enjoyable as the interfaces it enables designers to create. Based on theoretical studies of communication and on Kotelly's long experience as a virtuoso voice interface designer, it provides a clear step-by-step introduction to the art of designing and implementing an effective and satisfying user experience.”

—TERRY WINOGRAD
PROFESSOR, STANFORD UNIVERSITY, AND COAUTHOR OF
BRINGING DESIGN TO SOFTWARE AND UNDERSTANDING COMPUTERS AND COGNITION

“This book explains why good design is essential not only to achieve more fully the traditional goal of automated phone systems—automating more calls—but to seize the huge opportunity today to create an enjoyable experience—one that actually delights customers. Blade knows the subtleties of designing an effective speech service and provides the reader with an appreciation for the importance of those fine points.”

—WILLIAM SCHWARTZ
SENIOR VICE PRESIDENT, VOICE RESPONSE UNIT DESIGN
BANK OF AMERICA

“Blade Kotelly's The Art and Business of Speech Recognition is an engaging and accessible introduction to how to design a “noble” speech application. Kotelly takes on the role of the caller advocate, and takes the reader through the caller's mind in a speech-user experience, showing

  • How to maximize the efficiency of the experience

  • How to entice the user to speak in a way that the system can comprehend

  • How to walk the fine line between appealing anthropomorphism and efficient automation

  • How to provide subtle pointers to educate the caller without appearing condescending

In this book, Kotelly also gives good advice to businesses considering speech implementation. He convincingly illustrates that a telephony speech interface is much more than a “better touch-tone.” He shows that speech offers better return on investment, and even more importantly, speech adds a “human touch.” This “human touch” appeals to the caller's emotion, and projects an image that is helpful, forgiving, engaging, and even fun. The “human touch” also offers a fantastic opportunity to strengthen branding and connect to the customer. Kotelly's sound business advice extends to measuring ROI, usability, caller satisfaction, and uncovering “bugs” in the system.

This book is a must-read for anyone thinking about designing speech interfaces or deploying speech applications.

—KAI-FU LEE
CORPORATE VICE PRESIDENT
NATURAL INTERACTIVE SERVICES DIVISION
MICROSOFT CORPORATION

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