This paper proposes the use of voice commands expressed in natural language for part program generation for pulsed fiber laser micromachining. Traditionally, according to ISO G-code, a part program is an ordered list of program blocks in an ASCII formatted computer file. Each block identifies a machine operation and defines its parameters, following a predefined syntax. Under the proposed approach, such a file is replaced by natural language voice commands without any particular syntax constraints. Such an approach has the potential to facilitate the generation of part programs in domains (laser micromanufacturing, rapid prototyping, desktop computer numerical control) where traditional ISO G-code programming seems inappropriate, and the adoption and implementation of complex solutions such as STEP-NC or CAD/CAM systems could be unjustified. The input system is responsible for the recognition and interpretation of voice commands according to a statistical knowledge base learnt from examples. The proposed approach has been implemented in a prototype computer system, named smart programming system that has been validated by an application to the programming of pulsed fiber laser micromachining.
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