Conversational technology allows people to get information, conduct transactions, and be entertained, simply by speaking to a computer. Based on the integration of speech recognition, natural language processing and dialog understanding, conversational systems are rapidly becoming an important component of solutions including virtual assistants, chatbots, customer care, and the Internet of Things. These systems save money and time, attract new customers, and improve accessibility for their users on a day in and day out basis for millions of people all over the world.

Conversational Technologies will help you turn technologies into solutions.

Be sure to check out my recent book, "Natural Language Understanding with Python". This book covers everything you need to get started in the exploding technology of natural language understanding with generative AI.

Here's a 1-minute audio introduction to Conversational Technologies, powered by Witlingo's audio station technology.

We know about

Enterprise Strategies for Conversational Technology

Development of strategic plans for speech recognition, natural language, and dialog technologies, including requirements analysis, vendor selection and technology state of the art.

Natural Language Understanding

Applications of natural language technologies for a wide variety of applications, including customer service, virtual agents, language learning and speech therapy. My recent book, "Natural Language Understanding with Python" provides a strong hands on foundation in natural language understanding, starting with fundamental concepts and continuing to the latest ideas in Large Language models.

Speech Technologies

Applications of speech recognition, speech understanding and text to speech, including requirements analysis, vendor selection, design and development.

Industry Analysis

Knowledge of the industry and major company activities involving these technologies.

Some Examples


The World Wide Web Consortium has published many standards that are making speech and language technologies interoperable and easy to use. We are highly experienced with these standards. The W3C Voice Interaction Community Group has recently published a draft report on standards for virtual agents, "Intelligent Personal Assistant Architecture". The draft describes some ideas for representing natural language results in a cross-platform way.

My recent book, Multimodal Interaction with W3C Standards, covers most of the W3c voice and multimodal interaction standards.

I also write a regular column on standards for Speech Technology Magazine.

Podcast Interviews

Natural Language Understanding

An episode in "The Future is Spoken" series, produced by the Digital Assistant Academy. This is a high level overview of natural language understanding. It's also available with transcripts and chapters. The chapters and transcript were created automatically by Ziotag.

The Open Voice Interoperability Initiative of the Linux Foundation AI and Data Foundation

I am the Senior Advisor to the Open Voice Interoperability Initiative of the Linux Foundation AI and Data Foundation. This project has the goal of developing specifications that will enable conversational assistants developed by diverse organizations, on different platforms to collaborate by means of a common communication protocol. You can

Natural Language Processing Training

We know about commercial and research natural language processing tools, including open source tools, as well as the academic literature. Here's a five minute overview of natural language processing, which is part of the AVIOS (Applied Voice Input Output Society) video series, "A Closer Look at the World of Speech Technology".

Industry Analysis and Evaluation

Extensive experience evaluating human language technologies, going back to the classic DARPA Air Travel Information (ATIS) systems. Some recent examples:
  1. Does Your Intelligent Assistant Really Understand You? An evaluation of the natural language processing abilities of five popular personal assistants.
  2. 2016 State of the Speech Technology Industry
  3. Accessibility of voice systems for users with cognitive disabilities
  4. User interfaces to the Internet of Things


We work with the major natural language development tools, including open source systems in Java and Python, as well as proprietary systems such as the Alexa Skills Kit,, Microsoft LUIS, and Nuance Mix. We also work with speech recognition and ontology tools.

About Us

Company Background

Conversational Technologies was founded in 2002 with the mission of helping its customers apply speech and language technologies in creative, socially beneficial, and innovative ways.

Our Customers

Many of our customers are entrepreneurs with ideas for new applications of speech and natural language understanding technologies, but we also work with large corporations and government agencies. We develop requirements, designs and prototypes. We also identify vendors and architect solutions. We make it possible for our customers to realize their visions.

Deborah Dahl
Deborah Dahl

I focus on designing and building innovative applications of speech and natural language technology. I work with all kinds of customers, including startups, large enterprises, and government agencies. I frequently speak at industry conferences such as the Conversational Interaction Conference, Voice Summit, and SpeechTEK. I also have extensive experience in speech, multimodal and accessibility standards activities in the World Wide Web Consortium, having served as Chair of the Multimodal Interaction Working Group. I have been an editor of several multimodal standards, including EMMA (Extensible MultiModal Annotation specification) and the Multimodal Architecture and Interfaces specification. I am a member of the Board of Directors of AVIOS, (the Applied Voice Input Output Society) and a member of the Editorial Board of Speech Technology Magazine. I have over 30 years of experience in speech and natural language technologies, including work on research, defense, government, and commercial systems. In addition to my three books, I have also published many technical papers and book chapters.

I received the "Speech Luminary" award from Speech Technology Magazine in 2012 and 2014.

Contact Us

Bring us your ideas! We love to hear about ideas for new, disruptive applications of speech and language technologies, as well as ideas for improving traditional applications.

Contact information

+1 610 888-4532 dahl at conversational-technologies dot com


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