Every interaction with the system has something to start, or prompt, it, whether that is a user saying the wake word for a virtual assistant, a website informing a user about a promotion, or a text message appearing on your phone. Afterwards the prompt the user can interact: request the virtual assistant to perform an action, the user accepting or declining the promotion, or replying to the text on your phone. Our system provides feedback to the user too: the virtual assistant acknowledging the action was performed, the website stating its respect for the user's choices, or showing an explicit "Sent" message to the user.
User says wake word
User requests assistant to perform action
Device (assistant) acknowledges action performed
Device (website) shows promotion
User acts on or dismisses the message
Device (website) respects user's decision
Device (messaging app) tells user about a text message
User replies to or dismisses the message
Device (messaging app) acknowledges reply or respects dismissal
In the prompt-interact-feedback cycle, a prompt is always the first part in the conversation. It can be initiated by the user to prepare for the interaction, or by a device preparing to receive user interaction.
Later in the cycle, it is used by the device only as the way to keep the conversation going.
An interaction always follows each prompt. That interaction can even be ignoring the prompt. The user always performs the interactions.
Interactions are the most common part of a conversation. They give the user an opportunity to contribute to the conversation, and have a say in what they are using.
The device always provides the feedback. The last part in any conversation is the feedback. This tells the user how the action they requested went, or on how their interaction was received. This primarily functions to confirm to the user that their interaction was received and respects the interaction the user made with the device.
Each conversation must finish with feedback from the device. This provides a clean way to conclude a conversation, without the user feeling as if they are not finished interacting in the conversation. If you need additional information from the user, use a prompt instead of feedback. Feedback must allow the user to stop interacting with minimal consequences. Feedback may be a force stop by the device or give the user the option to ignore and do something else to end the conversation.