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IVR design for telecommunications operators Developed in L 2 F, INESC ID Lisboa Instituto Superior Técnico, Universidade Técnica de Lisboa. Final Project towards the Bachelors Degree . Nº119. Summary. Introduction IVR platforms VoiceXML Application Demonstration Conclusion.

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IVR design for telecommunications operatorsDeveloped in L2F, INESC ID LisboaInstituto Superior Técnico, Universidade Técnica de Lisboa.

Final Project towards the Bachelors Degree . Nº119

summary
Summary
  • Introduction
  • IVR platforms
  • VoiceXML Application
  • Demonstration
  • Conclusion
ivr platforms

Introduction

  • IVR Platforms
  • VoiceXML Application
  • Demonstration
  • Conclusion
IVRPlatforms
  • IVRs, what and what for?

Autonomous and modular platforms capable of establishing an interactive Human-Machine interface. This sort of platforms are designated as IVR (Interactive Voice Response), and are typically used in customer service phone lines such as those of telephone operators, insurances, banks, and airports.

    • IVRs enable an automatic interaction with the customer and as such have two advantages:
      • They provide permanent service (24h).
      • They lower significantly the number of calls placed on hold during peak periods.
ivr platforms1

Introduction

  • IVR Platforms
  • VoiceXML Application
  • Demonstration
  • Conclusion
IVRPlatforms
  • IVR platforms are normally equipped with voice synthesizers and devices that recognize Dual Tone Multiple Frequency (DTMF) inputs, but in some cases they are also equipped with speech recognition devices.
  • Speech recognition devices provide the customer with an experience as close to “natural” as possible.
main goals

Introduction

  • IVR Platforms
  • VoiceXML Application
  • Demonstration
  • Conclusion
Main goals
  • This project was developed as a component of the Final Project towards the Bachelors Degree in Computer and Electro-techniques Engineering. It aimed to create an autonomous and modular platform capable of establishing an interactive Human-Machine interface in

European Portuguese.

  • Standard:using open standard modules like publicVoiceXML.
  • Autonomous:allowing two different work environments.
    • “Laboratory environment”: using local PC interface.
    • “Real environment”: using ISDN line.
  • Modular:any module could be replaced, it’s only necessary to accomplish standard specifications, e.g. Microsoft SAPI.
open standards

Introduction

  • IVR Platforms
  • VoiceXML Application
  • Demonstration
  • Conclusion
Open Standards
  • Until very recently, the IVRs were proprietary solutions:
    • Once an IVR was installed and operational, both the hardware and the software became the property of a single provider.
    • This type of solutions, proprietary and “key in hand” prove themselves limited in that a common programmer is not capable of developing new applications.
open standards1

Introduction

  • IVR Platforms
  • VoiceXML Application
  • Demonstration
  • Conclusion
Open standards
  • To overcome these and other limitations and with the primary goal of standardizing IVR platforms and applications, VoiceXML was developed.
  • Nowadays, VoiceXML is considered by the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) as the standard, describing interactive dialogues using as XML (Extensive Markup Language) a base.
  • VoiceXML promotes IVR platforms and applications standardization.
typical architecture

Introduction

  • IVR Platforms
  • VoiceXML Application
  • Demonstration
  • Conclusion
Typical Architecture

VoiceXML documents dynamic creation

VoiceXML browser

Real time dialogue

management.

voicexml browser

Introduction

  • IVR Platforms
  • VoiceXML Application
  • Demonstration
  • Conclusion
VoiceXML browser
  • After a careful analysis of the different browsers currently available, we chose publicVoiceXML (PVX) as the VoiceXML browser for this project.

Main features:

      • Open source project, available in sourceForge.
      • Telephony Interface: Common ISDN protocol 2.0.
      • GNU/GPL license.
      • Automatic Speech Recognition desired as future implementation.
      • VoIP communication under development.
voicexml browser1

Introduction

  • IVR Platforms
  • VoiceXML Application
  • Demonstration
  • Conclusion
VoiceXML browser
  • PVX is an open source project and as such it incorporates the contributions from different programmers spread throughout the world.
  • In its original version, which was the starting point for this project, PVX was incomplete: it did not contemplate speech recognition, allowing only for speech synthesizing and recognition of DTMF inputs.
browser s initial version

Introduction

  • IVR Platforms
  • VoiceXML Application
  • Demonstration
  • Conclusion
Browser’s initial version

Arquitectura do publicVoiceXML

browser development

Introduction

  • IVR Platforms
  • VoiceXML Application
  • Demonstration
  • Conclusion
Browser development
  • Aiming to implement a Human-Machine interface in European Portuguese, we proceeded to incorporate two speech engines onto the PVX: the Audimus for speech recognition and the DIXI for speech synthesis.
  • Both the Audimus and the DIXI were developed by the Laboratório de Sistemas de Lingua Falada (L2F), INESC ID, in Lisbon.
browser development1

Introduction

  • IVR Platforms
  • VoiceXML Application
  • Demonstration
  • Conclusion
Browser development

publicVoiceXML architecture after this project.

web server

Introduction

  • IVR Platforms
  • VoiceXML Application
  • Demonstration
  • Conclusion
Web server

Such as Visual browser, i.e. Internet Explorer, a VoiceXML browser may

access to Web contents.

Nevertheless there are some differences to consider:

  • Contents verbalization to present to user.
  • Allow speech answers instead of typical keyboard and mouse interaction.
  • Specific Voice Web servers; They handle HTTP VoiceXML browser requests, answering with dynamic VoiceXML documents to present Web contents to the user.
system architecture

Introduction

  • IVR Platforms
  • VoiceXML Application
  • Demonstration
  • Conclusion
Systemarchitecture
acme web server

Introduction

  • IVR Platforms
  • VoiceXML Application
  • Demonstration
  • Conclusion
ACME Web server

Modules:

  • Server Main
  • Gestor de Clientes
  • Servlets
    • Login servlet
    • Meteo
    • Notícias
    • Voice E-mail
available services

Introduction

  • IVR Platforms
  • VoiceXML Application
  • Demonstration
  • Conclusion
Available services

Finally, once we had defined and implemented the complete system

architecture, we developed a VoiceXML application based on menus with

three separate services: Voice E-mail, Weather reports and availability to news

reports based on RSS (Rich Site Summary) documents

Weather reports

Voice E-mail

News reports

system presentation

Introduction

  • IVR Platforms
  • VoiceXML Application
  • Demonstration
  • Conclusion
System presentation

The presentation is divided into the following items:

  • Voice E-mail:
    • E-mail listening.
    • E-mail reply.
    • E-mail compose.
  • News reports:
    • Listening latest generic news.
  • Weather reports:
    • Wheather forecast for a Portuguese city.

final results

Introduction

  • IVR Platforms
  • VoiceXML Application
  • Demonstration
  • Conclusion
Final results

Main features:

  • IVR Platform – publicVoiceXML
    • Speech recognition engines interface – Microsoft SAPI5.1
    • Telephony interface: Common ISDN Access Protocol 2.0
    • Local interface, “Laboratory environment”: local PC sound card.
  • Portuguese(Portugal) Speech Synthetization and Recognition:
    • Text to Speech Engine: DIXI – L2F INESC-ID Lisboa.
    • Automatic Speech Recognition Engine: Audimus – L2F INESC-ID Lisboa.
final results1

Introduction

  • IVR Platforms
  • VoiceXML Application
  • Demonstration
  • Conclusion
Final results
  • Voice services Web server
    • Handles all the publicVoiceXML requests to access Web contents, allowing the user to access Web services using the telephone.
    • Specific Servlets are responsible to process the referred request and generate dynamic VoiceXML documents Aplicação de Voz VoiceXML
  • VoiceXML application based on menus with three separate services:
    • Voice E-mail,
    • Weather reports
    • News reports based on RSS (Rich Site Summary) Web sites.

Dedicated user interaction based on a XML Client’s file.

critical analysis

Introduction

  • IVR Platforms
  • VoiceXML Application
  • Demonstration
  • Conclusion
Critical analysis
  • O sistema desenvolvido representa um passo importante no que respeita à inovação e à convergência para standards abertos.
  • Not yet a commercial version.
  • The platform presents stability, making possible to show and understand all the emerging VoiceXML potential.
  • Brings every day Web services to telephone user.
  • For a commercial use, it is extremely recommendable:
    • ASR Lexical development.
    • Web contents treatment to deliver to DIXI TTS.
slide22

Introduction

  • IVR Platforms
  • VoiceXML Application
  • Demonstration
  • Conclusion

Final Project towards the Bachelors Degree, developed in L2F,

INESC ID Lisboa.

Supervisor: Prof. João Paulo Neto

Authors:

Hugo Monteiro Nº46546 . Hugo_monteiro@zmail.pt

Marco Mouta Nº46607 . Marco_Mouta@netcabo.pt

Documentation:

Final Report : “Desenho de IVRs para Operadoras Telefónicas”.

Presentation Videos: Voice E-mail, News and Weather reports.

October 2005