Wikipedia’s Plans to Introduce Speech Synthesis to Allow Users to Gain Better Access to its Information

Wikipedia intends to include a speech synthesis software in its encyclopedia. The software, which will have the capability to read out various parts of text on the online encyclopedia, is a project of KTH Royal Institute of Technology University in Stockholm, Sweden. The project aims towards increasing the accessibility of Wikipedia.

Joakim Gustafson, KTH’s head of the speech group, told TechCrunch that the software once complete will allow the substitution of various modules in the TTS (Text-to-Speech System) due to its open-source sections. Statistics from Wikimedia Sweden indicated that 125 million Wikipedia users each month require text in speech form due to visual impairment or literacy factors. Gustafson also proclaimed that the crowdsourcing element would enable users to correct or report sentences that sound grammatically wrong.

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