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View Full Version : Voice to text chat for the hearing impaired?



DrunkDwarf13
12-12-2007, 07:55 PM
I have recently been playing with a few hearing impaired players and we find it difficult to get party members because they can not use voice chat. I was wondering if any thought had been given to possibly adding voice to text chat to the game. I realize that it would apply to a very small percentage of the players but it could have other uses other than just the hearing impaired. If a party was role playing and a male player was playing a female character Voice to text could be used to not break the RP feel of the group. Nothing cools the fire of a party faster than a female elven mage who sounds like a linebacker.

jjflanigan
12-12-2007, 08:01 PM
I have recently been playing with a few hearing impaired players and we find it difficult to get party members because they can not use voice chat. I was wondering if any thought had been given to possibly adding voice to text chat to the game. I realize that it would apply to a very small percentage of the players but it could have other uses other than just the hearing impaired. If a party was role playing and a male player was playing a female character Voice to text could be used to not break the RP feel of the group. Nothing cools the fire of a party faster than a female elven mage who sounds like a linebacker.

Most voice to text programs have to be trained and are very complex...while it would be nice, i'd be very surprised to ever see something like that in an MMO. I was trying to come up with a valid solution after playing with someone that listed that they were deaf in their bio. They kept apologizing in the group chat that they were slowing things down and I felt badly for them :(. Unfortunately I wasn't able to come up with anything that seemed to fit that wouldn't incur a huge development cost.

sirgog
12-13-2007, 04:25 AM
I think this is a good idea that won't be able to be implemented due to the mammoth amount of work it would take.

Also, can you imagine someone with a strong accent using that?

Staedtler
12-13-2007, 05:03 AM
If anyone manages to create one of these things they'll become trillionaires.

Though it would be entertaining to see a low-key budget version of a voice to text translator. It would probably explode when it encounters its first Australian. "Gidday mite! Grphz.... blorp... dingo ... vegemite ... oageef *fizzle*"

skyking613
12-13-2007, 06:47 AM
Have you tried Dragon Naturally Speaking? I think they still make it. It was a really good program 7 years ago, so I could imagine what it could do now.

Razvan
12-13-2007, 08:47 AM
Though it would be entertaining to see a low-key budget version of a voice to text translator. It would probably explode when it encounters its first Australian. "Gidday mite! Grphz.... blorp... dingo ... vegemite ... oageef *fizzle*"


Thank you for making me look like an idiot laughing for no apparent reason on the hallways at work! THat was the funniest thing I read in months! :D

Kavel_Havae
12-13-2007, 11:00 AM
one of my brothers is hearing impaired (Profoundly Deaf) and he uses a speech to text translation tool that I will have to ask about. I do know that it makes errors on "unknown" voices, and depends on the quality of the speech path to the accuracy.

as for an ingame module, won't happen... Too costly, no where near an even ROI, limited use, and most hearing impaired can type like a demon. It us Audiophiles that need help with the typing most of the time :)

Krysta_Shadowvol
12-13-2007, 11:00 AM
I think this is something that is worth looking into. I would love to hear from one of you reguarding the subject.

Bekki
12-13-2007, 11:11 AM
I think this is something that is worth looking into. I would love to hear from one of you reguarding the subject.

I think this would be awesome, more so as I have a guild mate
who is hearing impared and I think it would be a great addition to the Game.

I must also admit though, that I may be
more sensitive to this, as I have been
in Aviation maint. for over 20 YEARS!
and I have rescently been told by the Docs
that I too have hearing Damage.

Ringlord
12-13-2007, 01:04 PM
Well it took many years for them to finally get voice chat into an MMO and that was not all that complex a problem compared to accounting for different accents, dialects and personal inflections for each individual when trying to create a voice recognition program. It would be great if they could do it and it certainly can't hurt for them to look into it, but I don't foresee them being able to add it :(

I have played with plenty of people who do not use voice chat for any number of reasons and that includes turning on their speakers so they could at least hear those who were using it and they never slowed us down.

CrazySamaritan
12-13-2007, 01:13 PM
It is us Audiophiles that need help with the typing most of the time :)
Got that right!


Anyone know how often you see Hearing txting one another? Think you can guess how often the Deaf use it?
I've seen them txting one-handed so they had another hand free to sign.

Greatest joke of it all is that my mother, who is a teacher, listens to other teachers who blame 'chatspeek' as lessening their student's ability to spell, then she chimes in to note that Deaf literacy has gone up on account of the txt/chat that occurs!



From a financial standpoint, it's just better to use the chat boxes. :rolleyes:
I use the boxes about half the time, anyway.

oronisi
12-13-2007, 01:16 PM
Have you tried Dragon Naturally Speaking? I think they still make it. It was a really good program 7 years ago, so I could imagine what it could do now.

While it has got a bit better, voice to text has hit a wall at around 95% accurate. It will take a breakthrough to get past that point and I honestly don't expect that to happen for a few more years. It's worth a whole separate conversation, so I won't go into it.

To the OP, the only realistic thing to do is, as the party leader, type all important communications.

Staedtler
12-13-2007, 01:18 PM
I think this is something that is worth looking into. I would love to hear from one of you reguarding the subject.

I guess I'll be a bit more explicit.

All commercial speech to text programs to date are no where near capable of undertaking this task. Even the most advanced, Dragon Naturally Speaking, requires the user to go through a training session to attune the program to the user's unique accent. Having a program which recognizes thousands of different accents instantly is a problem of vast complexity.

Even if you do get it to recognize "this general sound corresponds to this letter combination" you'll need to implement a heuristic method so that the translator can arrive at "your" instead of "you're" (something many forum users could benefit from!). The problem of evolving slang is another huge road bump that would be encountered (e.g. "haha eye poned yew").

Add on the additional constraint of wanting this program to run in the background of an MMOG without having significant client or server lag. This is quickly turning into an impossible task.

All in all, we're about a good twenty years off from this technology, if not more. I believe the commercial market will eventually see it because of its active use in non-commercial, specifically government practices. Do you think it's a cadre of underpaid government workers scanning the nation's phone calls for "dirka dirka taliban jihad"? Nope, it's computers!

Gornin
12-13-2007, 01:39 PM
True, programs have to be trained, but you can usually get an idea of what was trying to be said even on one that is baseline. If there was a way to link to the chat servers with your own built in program,ie Dragon, it might be just enough to make a difference.

DrunkDwarf13
12-13-2007, 02:42 PM
Well it seems the majority of us agree "a least in principle" that the ROI for voice to text makes this a unlikely choice for a game add. So here is my second take for us typing challenged. Add the ability to hotkey text phrases to our quick slots. Such as "trap!!", "hold up!", or "RUN!!". Only in combat, vital to survival phrases would need to be hot keyed. Any lengthy chats could be handled out of combat.

This would also could also have uses for the non-typing challenged such as "/emote punches zerging idiot in the nose!"

Qzipoun
12-13-2007, 02:46 PM
Though a feature like this would be very nice, it is unrealistic in an MMO. A Voice-to-text program would have to be trained to understand any person's voice no matter what the accent is or their personal style of speech. There are programs like this that help for every-day tasks but they just focus on changing a specific person's voice to text, having to do that with 6 people in a party, all with different accents microphone qualities, background noise, speach style etc... would be way out of Turbine's budget.

CrazySamaritan
12-13-2007, 02:52 PM
Well it seems the majority of us agree "a least in principle" that the ROI for voice to text makes this a unlikely choice for a game add. So here is my second take for us typing challenged. Add the ability to hotkey text phrases to our quick slots. Such as "trap!!", "hold up!", or "RUN!!". Only in combat, vital to survival phrases would need to be hot keyed. Any lengthy chats could be handled out of combat.

This would also could also have uses for the non-typing challenged such as "/emote punches zerging idiot in the nose!"

The /alias command was initially programmed with such functionality.
It didn't work, so was removed from the list of commands.

SteveK14
12-13-2007, 03:07 PM
Though a feature like this would be very nice, it is unrealistic in an MMO. A Voice-to-text program would have to be trained to understand any person's voice no matter what the accent is or their personal style of speech. There are programs like this that help for every-day tasks but they just focus on changing a specific person's voice to text, having to do that with 6 people in a party, all with different accents microphone qualities, background noise, speach style etc... would be way out of Turbine's budget.

But it should be a part of the client program. The only voice it will hear is your voice on your microphone. It wouldn't need to hear all the other voices. It would output text from you speaking in to your microphone so it would only "learn" one voice.

Steve

vanderberg
12-13-2007, 03:21 PM
Lets clarify the impairment, they can't hear, it's not about them not being able to speak to the party. So even though you can hear and talk just fine, their trainer wouldn't be programmed to your voice. That's the hang up.

Murnk.

SteveK14
12-13-2007, 04:00 PM
Lets clarify the impairment, they can't hear, it's not about them not being able to speak to the party. So even though you can hear and talk just fine, their trainer wouldn't be programmed to your voice. That's the hang up.

Murnk.

Their trainer doesn't have to do anything. The trainer would be on your machine translating your voice to text output in the chat window. Each person doesn't need to translate what everyone else says, your client does your voice locally and outputs it to the party chat window. Thus sending it to all in the party to read. It would be the same as if I had someone at my keyboard typing in the chat window as I spoke. The hearing impaired player just has to read the chat window.

Steve

Kavel_Havae
12-13-2007, 05:29 PM
true but the cost involved (Cash money/ Cpu Cycles) would be high for anyone trying to put dragon on their machine for that purpose alone.

could it learn "Kargon"ish? :eek: