[arm-allstar] TTS translation options

Doug Crompton doug at crompton.com
Thu Sep 3 20:06:25 EST 2015


 If interface information is available to any of the paid services we could provide a way to link to it. We will be doing that for Cepstral voice. The problem with paid services is that the purchase and installation are wholly the responsibility of the user. There are so many paid services that it would be hard to keep up with it. They are also a moving target. One could be here today and gone tomorrow. There is no paid service that I know of that would allow us to pre-install the SW pursuant to the user signing up. It would also not be a good idea to do that even if we could because the SW would just sit there and the majority would not use it.

We are working on finding the best free solution which will be acceptable. If a user wants to go out on some route that is not supported they are pretty much on their own. One option we are looking at is using Allison and the limited weather text vocabulary we have from her to form the weather and give warnings. While it is nice to listen to a complete weather forecast is it really necessary given all the other electronic options we have today? Probably not. A simple text warning which would alert the listeners to seek other means of information might suffice. 
73 Doug

From: wb9rsq at gmail.com
To: arm-allstar at hamvoip.org
Date: Thu, 3 Sep 2015 16:07:35 -0500
Subject: [arm-allstar] TTS translation options

Not to beat a dead horse but the loss of tts for the weather scripts has been a major frustration for me.I spoke with Doug, Wa3DSP the other evening and mentioned I had been digging in to options.The bottom line for distribution is free but as a blind user of speech synthesizers for as much as 16 hours per day I know quality matters.I can live with poor but people in my office freak out when hearing even the better voices I have available.I can think of several options but none of them are cheap or easy since you’d be looking at a Windows machine running to serve the speech.Not really an option.There are only a few voices that might run on the PI2 or the BBB.We all know of them and none really match the Google output we got use to.However I think that as Doug mentioned it might be possible to support options in any new scripts with the understanding that users would have to decide if a given service was worth paying for.To that end I have located info on pricing for Google Translate:https://cloud.google.com/translate/v2/faq?hl=en#pricingI have not calculated how many characters a weather script might send in a month but I’d be surprised if it hit one million.Still $20.00 is a bit much.The other option is the Microsoft translation api.https://datamarket.azure.com/dataset/1899a118-d202-492c-aa16-ba21c33c06cbIt appears if I heard this right you have to create an account but then you could get up to two million characters per month free.It might be possible for a club to set up an account and pay for more and then allow users to access the service with the club key.I’m no expert on scripts or how this might work but I think it might be worth trying the MS route.I can say that the voices with W7 and up are quite good and in W10 close to the best of my Voiceware reading voices.VW’s newest, James, is better than anything I’ve ever heard but it has issues for screen reader use.Keeping in mind that a screen reader user expects a completely different set of parameters for quality speech if all you want is great output for average listeners over a node clearly MS or Google could handle it.73 

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