Computer Mediated Speech Technology: Perceptions of Synthetic Speech and Attitudes Toward Disabled Users

Computer Mediated Speech Technology: Perceptions of Synthetic Speech and Attitudes Toward Disabled Users

John W. Mullennix (University of Pittsburgh, USA) and Steven E. Stern (University of Pittsburgh, USA)
Copyright: © 2008 |Pages: 14
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-59904-863-5.ch059
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Abstract

A frequently overlooked form of CMC is computer synthesized speech (CSS). Although the first CSS systems were rather crude and unintelligible, newer systems are fairly intelligible and are widely used for a number of applications, most importantly as aids for the speaking or visually disabled. In this chapter, we briefly review the development of CSS technology and discuss the work on perception and comprehension of CSS. Then, we examine how CSS use influences interactions between disabled people and nondisabled people. We conclude by emphasizing that the development of CSS systems should take into account various social psychological factors rooted in prejudice and stigma of the disabled.

Key Terms in this Chapter

Computer-Synthesized Speech: Speech output produced by software/hardware systems that utilize either formant synthesis by rule or concatenation of stored speech segments.

Disability: Any restriction or lack (resulting from an impairment) of ability to perform an activity in the manner or within the range considered normal for a human being.

Prejudice: Attitude directed toward people because they are members of a specific social group.

Augmentative and Alternative Communication: Modes of communication used as alternatives to normal speech, such as sign language, nonverbal gestures, visual icons or symbols and computer-synthesized speech.

Stigmatized: Members of groups who violate the norms established by the dominant group and are marked as deviant.

Disability: Any restriction or lack (resulting from an impairment) of ability to perform an activity in the manner or within the range considered normal for a human being.

Computer-Synthesized Speech: Speech output produced by software/hardware systems that utilize either formant synthesis by rule or concatenation of stored speech segments.

Stigmatized: Members of groups who violate the norms established by the dominant group and are marked as deviant.

Intelligibility: The degree to which speech sounds are capable of being appropriately identified. Speech intelligibility is usually tested via experimental paradigms.

Intelligibility: The degree to which speech sounds are capable of being appropriately identified. Speech intelligibility is usually tested via experimental paradigms.

Text-to-Speech: A system that converts typed text into audible speech output.

Text-to-Speech: A system that converts typed text into audible speech output.

Prejudice: Attitude directed toward people because they are members of a specific social group.

Augmentative and Alternative Communication: Modes of communication used as alternatives to normal speech, such as sign language, nonverbal gestures, visual icons or symbols and computer-synthesized speech.

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