Welcome Hrafn!

LVL grows even larger with Associate Processor, Hrafn Loftsson, joining our lab. His past work includes IceNLP. and the Almannaromur Icelandic speech corpus. Natural Language Processing is his primary focus.

 

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Without further ado LVL would like to welcome Hrafn, and we hope that he’ll lend his expertise to the rest of the LVL projects. If you would like to read more about him, you can check out his bio or his Reykjavik University page.

 

On an unrelated note: We also have added another project to our projects page, TTS for Icelandic.

Featured in BBC 4 Tech: Cognitive Workload Research

Last fall Michal was interviewed by a broadcast journalist for the BBC Arabic segment, BBC 4 Tech. The interview was regarding some early research he did with the Cognitive workload monitoring using voice project. The BBC 4 Tech segments have been uploaded onto YouTube with voice-overs in Arabic.

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Above is Michal explaining his part in the research to the interviewer, Anees.

Thanks to the BBC team you’ll get the distinct pleasure of seeing one of our own speaking Arabic, albeit dubbed, if you select play:

 

Radio Host Interviews Jón Guðnason about Robotics and AI

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Recently, Jón was interviewed on the Icelandic afternoon radio show,  Síðdegisútvarpið. On the program, he conversed about the progress in robotics and artificial intelligence. The focus of the conversation was on a new video from Boston Dynamics and how their robots can get about by opening doors and how the latest development in AI is allowing robots to sense their world and behave in more natural ways.

The interview was conducted at the Icelandic National Broadcasting Service (RÚV).

 

 

ASR: A SMASHING HIT AT UTMESSAN!!!

On Saturday Róbert and Anna also presented a prototype for an automatic speech recognition web service for general Icelandic (Vefgátt fyrir íslenskan talgreini). This speech recognizer for Icelandic will be made available to the public later this spring.

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LVL members explain how to use the ASR.
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Róbert presents the microphone to attendees to try out the Icelandic ASR for themselves.

 

Funding Approved for Icelandic Youth Language Study

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The Eyra app

We are delighted to be participating in the project “Icelandic Youth Language: An Empirical Study of Communicative Resources” headed by dr. Helga Hilmisdóttir at The Árni Magnússon Institute for Icelandic Studies.  Using Eyra, Teenage group conversations will be recorded and annotated during the project and used to study linguistic features such as communication patterns, vocabulary, imagery, inflection, sentence order and voice.  The data will also be used to improve language technology for teenage voices.

 

 

Does the future understand Icelandic? – UTMessan Talk

On Friday, LVL will be at the UTMessan conference being held here in Reykjavik. UTMessan is a IT conference presented in both Icelandic and English. The talk, “Skilur framtíðin íslensku? (Does the future understand Icelandic?)” will be presented by Anna Björk. This will be our first time presenting at UTMessan so we are very excited.

If you are interested in attending, below are the talk details:

Abstract: In recent years language technology and artificial intelligence have made a giant leap forward. The revolution becomes clear in the development of intelligent assistants like Siri, Alexa, Google Assistant and Cortana, that in ever more households are becoming a part of the family. In the discussion about language technology for Icelandic, the most prominent subject has been how and when we are going to speak Icelandic with those assistants.

But what about language technology for the purpose of increasing efficiency and service quality of companies and institutions? This talk discusses language technology in this context and what is needed so that Icelandic companies can join the rapid development in the field.

Watch the talkhttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IaOYG23R7_k
Date: 2 February, 2018
Location: Tækjatal – Chatbot Talks, Silfurberg B, Harpa, Reykjavík, Iceland
Language: Icelandic (perfect opportunity to brush up on your Icelandic)
Time: 11:55am – 12:25pm
Speaker:

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More details at UTMessan

We hope to see you there!

Interspeech 2017 Conference Summary

Yu-Ren gave a really good talk about measuring voice severity.

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Then, on Wednesday Anna, Inga, Matthías, and Jón answered questions about their posters to conference attendees.

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During the conference, welcome reception, and the banquet we reconnected with many old colleagues and met many new  in the speech processing and speech recognition world. For anyone who didn’t get a chance to attend Yu-Ren’s talk or to see the posters by Jón and Inga, we have links at the bottom of the post.

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Anna’s data is also available on Malfong now.

Inga’s Icelandic Parliament ASR Corpus

Yu-Ren’s slides

Jón’s Eyra Speech Corpora Poster

We hope to see you next year!

Largest Icelandic LVL Group at Interspeech in 2017

This August, our LVL group members will be attending Interspeech 2017 to present their three papers, meet other folks in the speech recognition field, and have lots of fun. Two posters,“Building an ASR corpus using Althingi’s Parliamentary Speeches” and “Building ASR corpora using Eyra,” will be presented during the Wednesday Special Session: Digital Revolution for Under-resourced Languages 2 poster session at 13:30-15:30 so go say, “Hi!” to our members if you can. The third paper, “Objective Severity Assessment From Disordered Voice Using Estimated Glottal Airflow,” will be presented as a talk by Yu-Ren on Monday afternoon.

For the Alþingi Speech paper by Inga Rún, the language corpus can be found at Malfong.is and the Kaldi recipe can be found on Github.com but the best resource will be Inga Rún herself so grab a drink and find her at the Welcome Reception or the Standing Banquet.

We hope to meet you all there!

Paper accepted to an IEEE-Transactions journal

Congratulations to Yu-Ren for getting his paper accepted to the highly recognized scholarly journal in the field of speech processing, “IEEE/ACM Transactions on Audio, Speech, and Language Processing”! However, the paper wouldn’t have come about without the collaborative efforts of MIT Lincoln Laboratory, Universidad Tecnica Federico Santa Maria, Massachusetts General Hospital, and Harvard Medical School. His paper, “Evaluation of glottal inverse filtering algorithms using a physiologically based articulatory speech synthesizer,” is about measuring the performance of different algorithms on glottal flow generated by the VocalTractLab speech synthesizer. Since the paper just got accepted, we don’t have a link to it yet but we will add one as soon as it is available.

 

Edit: Volume 25 Issue 8 with Yu-ren’s article is now out. For those with a subscription, here is the link: http://ieeexplore.ieee.org/document/7946161/

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Main results showing the performance of inverse filtering algorithms

Welcome, a new member

A new member just joined our team all the way from California, USA. Welcome, Judy !

Judy will be working with Inga on the ASR for parliament speeches project utilizing some mad Computer Science skills to among other things design an interface to get Inga’s research into the hands of the parliament staff.

It’s always necessary to not only have researchers, but also programmers and software engineers. All theory and no fun makes us all dull boys (and unemployed).