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Sun 13 Oct 2002 04:00 AM

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Belgian software company shows off audio products

Belgian company BaBel Technologies is showing off its innovative voice processing technologies.

Belgian company BaBel Technologies is showing off its innovative voice processing technologies.The company’s products include text to speech software, voice recognition software and even speaker verification products, allowing you to use a spoken word as a password.Babel2Lips is a software package that allows real time lip movements of a computer generated character. In other words, as you speak, the character’s lips move as if it were saying the words. This technology,which is available in 12 langauges including Arabic, was used to animate Vince Finn, a computer generated television presenting fish on the UK’s Channel 4 TV station.Other highlights include Babel-id, which allows spoken words to be used as passwords. Since the software works from the users’ voice and not a built in model, it is language independent: it works just as well in English as in Japanese, with no extra software needed. The software’s auto-adaptive voice activation technology means that it can operate in noisy environments, such as cars.All the company’s voice recognition software is fully Arabic language enabled, making it ideal for use in automated call centres in the region. BaBel is also demonstrating its Reading Pen II, a device which allows disabled users to scan text from a book and hear it read aloud. The success of the English language version led the company to provide support for further languages.The product’s integrated TTS mechanism offers users the choice to hear the whole scanned line or any individual word pronounced aloud. Additionally, users may choose to hear the syllabic breakdown of any word. The scanned word appears in an enlarged font on the pen’s LCD screen for the benefit of sight-impaired users, and can be viewed in its entirety or divided into syllables.

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