Modeling the user in natural language systems
January 23, 1988
For intelligent interactive systems to communicate with humans in a natural manner, they must have knowledge about the system users. This paper explores the role of user modeling in such systems. It begins with a characterization of what a user model is and how it can be used. The types of information that a user model may be required to keep about a user are then identified and discussed. User models themselves can vary greatly depending on the requirements of the situation and the implementation, so several dimensions along which they can be classified are presented. Since acquiring the knowledge for a user model is a fundamental problem in user modeling, a section is devoted to this topic. Next, the benefits and costs of implementing a user modeling component for a system are weighed in light of several aspects of the interaction requirements that may be imposed by the system. Finally, the current state of research in user modeling is summarized, and future research topics that must be addressed in order to achieve powerful, general user modeling systems are assessed.
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