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The Voice Synthesis Technology

Voice synthesis makes it possible to develop speech enabled computer-human interaction systems like putting annotations to files through voice commands or talking computer systems.

 
 
 
 

Introduction

 
Voice syncing is an AI technique that allows the software to learn and understand the nicety of someone’s voice. This is done by training on the target person’s voice data for number of hours. The most recent example of this technology is Alexa’s upgrade which allows you to interact with Amitabh Bachchan. This is a game changer for conversational AI’s and commerce in general. Who wouldn’t want the legend Mr. Bachchan to answer his questions or play the songs on demand?

 
Voice syncing works by learning millions of features of target’s voice. It then builds a template of their voice which can be used to produce any content by giving just a text input. It is possible to take care of features like language, accent, pitch and even expressions with Artificial Intelligence. Once the system learns the voice, it can produce hours of audio content in the same voice quality thus saving lot of time and cost.

 

Voice Synthesis History

 
It started 150 years back when Ada Lovelace and later Charles Babbage believed that one-day computers would be able to produce work of creativity, music and art in addition to perform routine mechanical tasks. With the advent of neural network algorithms, their vision is coming to reality. It is because of extremely fast processing capabilities of these algorithms and abundance of data available. Now, computers are able to produce stunning works of art, create music and now even able to speak in the same voice and aesthetics of humans. The last category is called voice synthesis.

 
Voice synthesis has been around for years. History has witnessed a lot of success stories in this direction. Back in 1791, an Austrian scientist developed a system consisting of tongue, lips and mouth made of rubber and a nose which was able to pronounce consonants. Joseph Faber developed a system in 1837 which implemented Pharyngeal Cavity used for singing controlled by a keyboard. Bell Labs Developed VOCODER which is known to be the keyboard-operated electronic speech analyzer and synthesizer. Since then, there has been good amount of research on voice syncing which shows an impressive improvement in the last couple of decades. There has resulted into a lot of literature from linguistic and engineering perspective.

 

Voice Synthesis Technology

 
Speech Synthesis addresses the area of Artificial Intelligence. This revolves round artificial production of speech by converting natural language text into a spoken waveform of speech. Inspired by the intelligence and effectiveness of speech production, a lot of efficient systems can be seen outperforming each other in one or other ways. Eventually, it’s much more that building expert systems to simulate natural speech production.

 
Speech synthesis systems can be highly useful for illiterate and vision impaired people to hear and understand the content very easily without having to face problems in their daily lives. Like any new technology and innovation, this too has pros and cons. It has great implications in the hands of creators but also can go amiss if get in wrong hands. Hence, to harness the power of this form of Artificial Intelligence, the creators propose voice synthesis more securely.

 
This technology is still in its primacy, but it definitely invites companies from diverse industries to start building a new layer of communication and content production. Apart from the obvious solution of saving enormous time and cost, it has deeper implications in terms of enhancing communication and making it more intimate.

 

Applications

 
The field of speech synthesis has seen a wider acceptance in commercial domain also. This is possibly perceived because of three major reasons: the increase in the ability of computers to process speech in less time with low cost, an increase in the available databases for experimentation and implementation and of course, huge improvement in speech synthesis technology.

 
Most of the electronic devices around us are not capable of synthesizing natural human-like high quality speech. Although there is lot of potential in Artificial Intelligence in giving power to these devices for synthesizing new speech, with the passage of time, there have been many techniques which are capable of rendering qualitative human-like speech. On the downside, such techniques rely highly on compute-intensive processors to attain these fascinating tasks such as reading emails and interactive dialogues.

 
Speech synthesis systems have seen steady growth which has made these systems to easily penetrate in our routine lives in the form of help desks, talking systems and call centers. The progress of speech synthesis systems has been remarkable in past decades and as of now it is no longer state-of-art systems that mechanical robots, but are considerably more natural sounding computer speech.

 

Conclusion

 
There are no low hanging fruits. The area of speech synthesis has also experienced a lot of challenges to mimic the physical processes of speech generated by human vocal tract. Researchers have struggled day and night for years to obtain a viable degree of success due to time-varying properties of speech. Earlier systems which produced low-quality speech inferior to that of human speech are slowly getting better. This has given directions for significant improvements in ways to perform speech synthesis. Although, many commercial products still use basic methods, but there is always a hope to gradually adapt their systems. This is possible by taking advantage of the Artificial Intelligence techniques for further improvements to sound more like humans.

One Response to “The Voice Synthesis Technology”

  1. Preksha Sharma says:

    This piece is really interesting

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