The University of Illinois enters into a partnership with various non-profits and with all the American tech giants: Amazon, Apple, Microsoft, Meta e Google. The goal is to work on the Speech Accessibility Project, which wants to improve speech recognition for people with disabilities. In particular, those suffering from Lou Gehrig’s syndrome, Parkinson’s, Down’s syndrome, cerebral palsy and other diseases that affect speech.
Tech companies together for better speech recognition for those with disabilities
“Voice interface platforms should be available to everyone, and this includes people with disabilities,” the professor points out Mark Hasegawa-Johnson. “This goal is difficult because it requires a lot of infrastructure, ideally the kind that can be supported by technology companies,” which can collect amounts of data that universities could not achieve on their own.
Lo Speech Accessibility Project will collect language samples from different sources. The University has already set up a group of paid volunteers who will provide voice samples to create anonymized data to train machine learning. In the beginning, they will all be talking people American English as a native language.
More than one American association for how Davis Phinney Foundation (for people with Parkinson’s disease) and Team Gleason (ALS) have expressed their support for the project.
For large tech companies, improve the Vocal recognition for those with disabilities it allows you to offer a better service to all your potential customers. Siri, Alexa, Google Assistant, Cortana and all other assistants will be able to better understand what is being said to them. And the same goes for dictation and translation services.