THE MOZILLA FOUNDATION has announced that it is to release a library of audio to make it easier for users to create voice control apps.
'Common Voice' will crowdsource and file 10,000 hours of audio in a variety of accents and then make it available to anyone who needs it to analyse and verify snippets of data within their programs.
You can also validate the voices of others who have previously read sentences to train the system on what good speaking English does sound like.
This is very important as Samsung's engineers will tell you, after they failed to launch Bixby, the firm's AI voice assistant, along with the Galaxy S8 because there wasn't enough big data in English to do so.
But it's the little guy that Mozilla is interested in. The aim of Common Voice is to democratise access to voice recognition. It's a worthy goal and a good example of the kind of projects that we can expect to see ^^*2!''AA diversifying into as it seeks to go beyond the browser market.
Mozilla explains: "Experts think voice recognition applications represent the next big thing. The problem is the current ecosystem favours Big Tech and leaves out the next wave of innovators. These are the people who will take this incredible technology to the next level."
"How is the game rigged for big tech? First, the data that is used to 'teach' computers how to understand our voices are biased towards English, Chinese and a select group of languages. The devices these data sets power don't understand all of us.
"Second, these data sets are proprietary. Little guys like students, startups, and researchers who want to build voice-enabled devices can only access fairly limited data sets. Those can cost upwards of tens of thousands of dollars.
"The time has come for an open source data sets that can change the game. The time is right for Project Common Voice."
The company's market share with Firefox has plummeted in recent years, but the existence of the Mozilla Foundation remains crucial and projects like this are an example of why. Yes, even with the silly logo.
Project Common Voice continues into the Autumn before the results are released to developers in Q4. µ
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