Conference date and location: 24-26 October, 2011, Dundee, Scotland
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ACES: Aphasia Emulation, Realism, and the Turing Test

Joshua Hailpern, Marina Danilevsky and Karrie Karahalios


To an outsider it may appear as though an individual with aphasia has poor cognitive function. However, the problem resides in the individual's receptive and expressive language, and not in their ability to think. This misperception, paired with a lack of empathy, can have a direct impact on quality of life and medical care. Hailpern's 2011 paper on ACES demonstrated a novel system that enabled users (e.g., caregivers, therapists, family) to experience first hand the communication-distorting effects of aphasia. While their paper illustrated the impact of ACES on empathy, it did not validate the underlying distortion emulation. This paper provides a validation of ACES' distortions through a Turing Test experiment with participants from the Speech and Hearing Science community. It illustrates that text samples generated with ACES distortions are generally not distinguishable from text samples originating from individuals with aphasia. This paper explores ACES distortions through a `How Human' is it test, in which participants explicitly rate how human- or computer-like distortions appear to be.

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