Listen

by Kurt Cagle

On the right part of the screen above this article is a little hyperlink - "listen". Push it ...

This is frankly really cool. Text-to-speech (TTS) applications have been around for some time (indeed, chances are pretty good that you have a TTS system, either Microsoft's SAPI in Windows, H&L's text to speech, Dragon Naturally speaking, or Festival in the Linux world (I'm sure there's an equivalent on the Mac side, but don't know off hand what it is), but the idea of putting a decent TTS generator and passing in web content to it to be transcribed and broadcast through Flash is one I've not seen done to any great degree before.


The quality of the voice transcription is surprisingly good, although I would prefer the ability to customize the voice on output (I'm sure it exists, just a question of setting it). However, it also showcases just how readily we're making the jump to  a world where our computers talk to us and we to them, just another medium of exchange.

No profound thoughts here, just wanted to make people sit up and notice a cool toy.

-- Kurt Cagle

5 Comments

Wil
2007-05-09 19:30:30
Why people can't give Apple their due, I will never understand... TTS has been in the Mac OS since 1993 and has shipped standard with every system since then!!!!!
Alessandro
2007-05-10 01:04:29
Cool!
Just one note: I think that the TTS system in Linux is named Festival, not Fiesta.
M. David Peterson
2007-05-10 16:31:34
@Wil,


Kurt said: "I'm sure there's an equivalent on the Mac side, but don't know off hand what it is"


You said: "Why people can't give Apple their due, I will never understand... TTS has been in the Mac OS since 1993 and has shipped standard with every system since then!!!!!"


Hey Wil: Relax. Apple is only now beginning to see an increase in the 3% market share they have held on to for dear life (remember the $150million investment from MSFT in '96? Apple would have folded had it not been for a little help when death was all but certain) for the better part of their entire existence. You seem to be suggesting that the other 97% of the worlds computers users should be required to research the availability of software they will more than likely never use, just to ensure proper diligence is made.


Wil, one word: Valium.

Peter
2007-05-18 07:08:32
Mark Birbeck did a demo app of XForms using TTS which was very cool. A flash recording of it is here:


http://www.formsplayer.com/demo/self-serve/self-serve-800x600.html

Kurt Cagle
2007-05-19 08:21:37
Alessandro,


Noted and changed - thanks.