DiSS-LPSS Joint Workshop 2010

The 5th Workshop on Disfluency in Spontaneous Speech
The 2nd International Symposium on Linguistic Patterns in Spontaneous Speech

Tokyo, Japan, September 25-26, 2010

On the Functions of the Vocalic Hesitation euh in Interactive Man-Machine Question Answering Dialogs in French

Ioana Vasilescu, Sophie Rosset, Martine Adda-Decker

LIMSI-CNRS, Orsay, France

This paper deals with the functions of the French vocalic hesitation euh in interactive speech of man-machine question answering dialogs. The present analysis suggests that the vocalic hesitation euh may carry various properties in speech, both disfluent signaling the speakers' efforts to put the intended message under production into appropriate words, and fluent, as markers of discourse structure. Moreover, euh seems to play a role in bracketing lexical units, pointing to the informative content within an utterance. This bracketing may favour intelligibility or decoding fluency on the listener's side. The potential contribution of the vocalic hesitation euh to lexical information bracketing is investigated with the goal of improved information processing by QA systems. Future objectives include a smarter interaction capacity by an appropriate usage of such euh items.

Index Terms. disfluency, fluency, vocalic hesitation, French, discourse markers, Q/A, dialog corpus

Full Paper

Bibliographic reference.  Vasilescu, Ioana / Rosset, Sophie / Adda-Decker, Martine (2010): "On the functions of the vocalic hesitation euh in interactive man-machine question answering dialogs in French", In DiSS-LPSS-2010, 111-114.