Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Voice and language recognition yields city information

03.08.2004


New in town and don’t know a soul! An evening free, but no idea where to go. What do you do? According to CATCH-2004, you consult one of their interactive systems for the information you need in your native language, and go straight to your preferred venue!

Working prototypes in Athens, Cologne and Helsinki

The CATCH 2004 IST project aimed to provide EU citizens with interactive, multilingual and multimode access to a wide range of information services and systems, offered by providers from both the public and the private sector.



By project close in June 2002, the participants had developed working prototype systems in three European cities, Helsinki, Athens and Cologne. These systems offered information on city events such as sporting activities, local cultural happenings and even TV and radio programme data, and could all be interrogated and reply in more than one language.

Participants in the project included IBM France (lead contractor), additional IBM technical units in Athens, Heidelberg and Prague, Nokia of Finland and OTE in Greece, as well as the Olympic Committee and the cities of Athens, Cologne and Helsinki.

Voice and language recognition

To achieve their ends, the project participants developed a multilingual interface that could handle both direct and spoken-language interrogation, a unified architecture that could handle input from a variety of client devices, and voice-enabled access to the Web databases connected to this architecture.

Key to the success of the system were the voice and language recognition capabilities, based on IBM’s proprietary ViaVoice™ technology, that were inbuilt. This core technology allowed the system to recognise a user’s native language without the need to select from any menu. The system was able to recognise the user’s language simply from the first sentences spoken, then would switch automatically to that language.

In addition, the CATCH-2004 system was a multimode interface, in that this information could be provided not only via city information kiosks, but also via the telephone, using either landline or mobile phones, or the PC. Interaction with the user had to be possible via speech, text or graphics, depending on the characteristics of the access device.

“It was the multilingual and multimode aspects together that were the real test,” says project coordinator Jacques Saint-Blancat of IBM France. “Integrating these two capabilities together into one system, and then making sure it all worked for the system trials, was quite a challenge.”

Multilingual information interface

In Helsinki, the system was set up as a ‘City Events Information’ source that could be interrogated either in Finnish or in English. The application proved so successful that it was extended to include details of radio and TV programmes, allowing users to consult radio and TV programme information on various channels, and enabling them to ask for a list of programmes based on programme name, type, channel, date, time and performer.

The Athens installation was provided with two distinct applications, one focusing on local cultural activities, the other on Olympic sporting events in preparation for the Athens Olympics in 2004. Here the project participants were provided with a database of information on events at the Olympics, for which they developed a voice XML interface based on the contents. Both applications could be consulted using either a Web browser or the telephone. Equally, both applications were capable of handling queries in three languages, English, German or Greek.

Results incorporated into working systems

During system trials, the Helsinki installation handled around 300 calls during the month of October 2001 alone. The results from this pilot were then analysed and used to fine-tune the application, and the final version was exhibited at the IST 2001 conference and exhibition. In addition one of the participants, the city of Cologne, has integrated parts of the CATCH-2004 technology into its existing city information booths.

The project has certainly helped the participants involved, believes Saint-Blancat. “The experience has been very positive for IBM. For our part, what we have learnt has helped us give our voice-response systems greater reliability, as well as making them more versatile.”
Contact:
Jacques Saint-Blancat
IBM France
Le Plan du Bois
F-06610 La Gaude
France
Tel. +33-492-114719
Email: jsb@fr.ibm.com

| IST Results
Further information:
http://www.ibm.com

More articles from Information Technology:

nachricht Three components on one chip
06.12.2018 | Universität Stuttgart

nachricht New quantum materials could take computing devices beyond the semiconductor era
04.12.2018 | University of California - Berkeley

All articles from Information Technology >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Researchers develop method to transfer entire 2D circuits to any smooth surface

What if a sensor sensing a thing could be part of the thing itself? Rice University engineers believe they have a two-dimensional solution to do just that.

Rice engineers led by materials scientists Pulickel Ajayan and Jun Lou have developed a method to make atom-flat sensors that seamlessly integrate with devices...

Im Focus: Three components on one chip

Scientists at the University of Stuttgart and the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) succeed in important further development on the way to quantum Computers.

Quantum computers one day should be able to solve certain computing problems much faster than a classical computer. One of the most promising approaches is...

Im Focus: Substitute for rare earth metal oxides

New Project SNAPSTER: Novel luminescent materials by encapsulating phosphorescent metal clusters with organic liquid crystals

Nowadays energy conversion in lighting and optoelectronic devices requires the use of rare earth oxides.

Im Focus: A bit of a stretch... material that thickens as it's pulled

Scientists have discovered the first synthetic material that becomes thicker - at the molecular level - as it is stretched.

Researchers led by Dr Devesh Mistry from the University of Leeds discovered a new non-porous material that has unique and inherent "auxetic" stretching...

Im Focus: The force of the vacuum

Scientists from the Theory Department of the Max Planck Institute for the Structure and Dynamics of Matter (MPSD) at the Center for Free-Electron Laser Science (CFEL) in Hamburg have shown through theoretical calculations and computer simulations that the force between electrons and lattice distortions in an atomically thin two-dimensional superconductor can be controlled with virtual photons. This could aid the development of new superconductors for energy-saving devices and many other technical applications.

The vacuum is not empty. It may sound like magic to laypeople but it has occupied physicists since the birth of quantum mechanics.

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

EGU 2019 meeting: Media registration now open

06.12.2018 | Event News

Expert Panel on the Future of HPC in Engineering

03.12.2018 | Event News

Inaugural "Virtual World Tour" scheduled for december

28.11.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

A new molecular player involved in T cell activation

07.12.2018 | Life Sciences

High-temperature electronics? That's hot

07.12.2018 | Materials Sciences

Supercomputers without waste heat

07.12.2018 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>