How Language Barriers Are Being Broken

words Al Woods

We see a world where everyone can communicate, no matter where they’re from. Whether you speak English, French, Japanese, or Italian, you can easily understand what another person speaking a different language is telling you.

That might sound impossible, but it might not be a fantasy for much longer. There are technology and software that can easily convert text to spoken voice online and it can be used to instantly give a vocal response in many situations. By adopting this tech to other languages, the world of communications can get a whole lot bigger.

Language Barriers

How Is It Done

One common area where speech synthesizers are used is in translations. You’re able to simply type words in one language and have them instantly translate into another language. The way this works is that text to speech bots utilize machine learning to scan and absorb text from any given language on the internet. From there, specific sounds are attached to individual letters and symbols and given variations based on what language they’re in, what context they’re used for, and which pronunciation fits best. For example, the word “aloud” means “to speak” in English, but means “ancient” in dutch. A machine learning algorithm has the task of analyzing other words in the sentence to determine what language and which instance of the word is used. This helps create fluent sounding sentences with words used accurately in any given language.  Once the text is analyzed, sound samples are played and stitched together to create what we hear.

Language Barriers

What Can It Be Used For

Some of the advantages of using text to voice for translation is that it opens the door for communication with other languages for not only businesses and companies, but average users as well. You can easily learn business English if you hear it and vocalize responses yourself, but that same tech can be used to communicate with friends or family members in their native language. Since translations are often instant, this helps break barriers that once could not have been overcome, such as the inability to have fluent conversations. It doesn’t just apply to speak with other people however, as text files, documents, and guides can be quickly transcribed and delivered to consumers. This can be a lifesaver in emergency situations where a person is unable to communicate or read in the language that surrounds them, such as a tourist on a vacation. For businesses, this also has the added advantage or vastly expanding their reach to other markets. While their services could previously only be accessed by a person who understands the same language as the company, their services can now expand all over the globe. In a growing age of communication, many industries are finding ways to reach out to their consumers in more effective ways.

Currently, the technology is usable and available to the average person and can be useful in many instances. As technology progresses, we’ll see the generated speech become much more natural and human-like. As more and more people seek to connect with each other across the world, text to voice online translation will become an indispensable tool. It’s no exaggeration to say that speech synthesis is helping create a world where the language is no longer a barrier.

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