After seeing the first Iron Man film, many people probably wished they had access to an all-powerful suit that could fly. Not me though, what I wanted was Jarvis, the voice-activated personal assistant who would act on my every request and perhaps even quip back at me.

Live webinar: Smart UI for Smart Homes

In 2008, when Tony Stark made his first cinematic appearance, voice interface technologies were in the doldrums. Dragon Dictate had shown people what could be possible, but there was no reliable, cheap and widely available system.

In the 10 years since, the arrival of Siri, Cortana, Alexa and Google Assistant have changed everything. These new natural language voice interfaces unlock a host of new possibilities from controlling your smart home to setting an alarm, all without the need to pick up a device.

It is well-known that performance of the voice recognition algorithms can be patchy for people with accents from outside of North America. However, at Cambridge Consultants we think that the individual differences between users’ speech patterns don’t have to be entirely a problem. By analysing a speaker’s voice you could understand their emotional state or make a good guess as to where they are from or their age. This information could be used to target more appropriate responses.

We have developed a concept demonstration to classify your accent and provide interpretation and feedback on the particular nuances of your local dialect.

In the demo visitors are encouraged to read a short paragraph of text and answer a few questions about their dialect.

Try the demo yourself and see what accent we think you have.

We're investing in explainable AI as part of our wider investment in machine learning because we’d rather the future look more like Jarvis and less like HAL.

Author
Trevor Wood
Group Leader, Algorithms and Analytics Group

Trevor specialises in applying sophisticated mathematical and statistical techniques to challenging real world problems. His skills include Bayesian statistics, signal processing, detection and tracking, data fusion, random finite sets, fluid dynamics, mathematical modelling, Monte Carlo simulation, algorithm design, radar, sonar, machine learning, inertial sensors, GPS, image processing.