Michael Pucher
Principal Investigator:
Michael Pucher Personal webpage
Institution:
ftw. The Telecommunications Research Center Vienna Webpage
Project title:
Viennese Sociolect and Dialect Synthesis
Status:
Completed (01.03.2007 – 28.02.2009) 24 months
Funding volume:
€ 394,200

 
Abstract:

One important means of natural human-computer interaction is (spoken) language, so for a variety of applications it is essential to have high quality speech synthesis for different languages. The outcome of our project will be synthetic voices, which allow a computer to “speak” in different Viennese dialects. Additionally we will develop an English voice with a Viennese accent. Since the sources of these voices are pieces taken from actual human speech, the outcome of the synthetic voices will sound very natural, close to human speech. With this technology it is possible to realize a lot of applications from the domain of education and tourism to art. A mobile sample application, a Viennese district guide capable of various dialects, will also be developed within the project. In the research part of the project we will investigate efficient methods for developing synthetic voices for languages that are variants of other languages. Furthermore, we will develop methods for switching, or shifting between the standard language and the sociolect or dialect, which reflects the fact that this mixing of standard language and variants corresponds to the everyday language use of many speakers. To evaluate the quality of the synthetic voices and of the sample application we will conduct user tests.

 

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