Interspeech'2005 - Eurospeech

Lisbon, Portugal
September 4-8, 2005

Access for All - A Talking Internet Service

Ove Andersen (1), Christian Hjulmand (2)

(1) Aalborg University, Denmark; (2) Special School for Adults, Denmark

Approximately 30% of the Danish population has severe problems in reading everyday text. In the light of the increasing amount of text available on the Internet this poses a democratic challenge to ensure "equal access" to information. The Talking Internet service - Access For All (AFA) - offers a free Internet-based tool for reading aloud any marked text with a synthetic voice. The only requirements are a standard equipped PC running a recent Windows OS and an Internet connection.

Experiences gathered from running the service for more than 28 months underline the viability of the concept. There is a clear need for a free internet based Danish text-to-speech synthesizer. Furthermore, the current state of technology i.e. internet bandwidth, response time and server technology is sufficient for setting up an online automatic reading service that is used by steadily growing number of individuals and institutions.

Full Paper

Bibliographic reference.  Andersen, Ove / Hjulmand, Christian (2005): "Access for all - a talking internet service", In INTERSPEECH-2005, 457-460.