Neva: A Conversational Agent based Interface for Library Information Systems

A. Ahad, B. Jung (Germany), and H. Prendinger (Japan)

Keywords

Conversational Interfaces, Intelligent Interfaces, Kiosk, RFID, Embodied Conversational Agent (ECA), Information Systems.

Abstract

For the last decades, computer users have been witnessing new paradigms in human computer interfaces technology. The arrival of new gadgets and technologies is boosting the way into the realization of friendly and easy-to-use interfaces. Libraries contain huge amounts of information relating to almost every aspect of life. Along with new technologies, libraries have evolved from card based catalogs to online accessible media. This paper introduces the concept of using virtual human characters to support user personalization in the library environment. The new aspects are the user personalization and the improved user and tangible interface supported by the intelligent virtual humans and books. To realize the concept, a kiosk based information system, named Neva, is developed for the McLuhan Documentation Center at the ISNM International School of New Media at the University of L├╝beck, Germany. By employing state of the art technologies like RFID to identify the users and Haptek character animation to realize the character support, Neva offers a simple and user friendly interface. It provides various services to the users based on their interest areas. The combination of text, graphics, spoken language, facial expression and gaze is used to present the results to the users.

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