Interspeech'2005 - Eurospeech

Lisbon, Portugal
September 4-8, 2005

Development of a Kiswahili Text to Speech System

Mucemi Gakuru (1), Frederick K. Iraki (2), Roger Tucker (3), Ksenia Shalonova (3), Kamanda Ngugi (1)

(1) University of Nairobi, Kenya; (2) United States International University, Kenya; (3) Outside Echo Ltd., UK

This paper discusses how a concatenative Kiswahili Text to Speech System (TTS) was developed based on the Festival Unit Selection Speech Synthesiser. It explains how important Kiswahili linguistic features such as phones, stress and intonation were modelled as inputs to the Festival engine. It also discusses the design, recording and segmentation of the speech database, beginning with text corpus collection and transcription. The choice of the speaker, which is crucial to realising a good TTS is discussed and also how the system was tested.

Full Paper

Bibliographic reference.  Gakuru, Mucemi / Iraki, Frederick K. / Tucker, Roger / Shalonova, Ksenia / Ngugi, Kamanda (2005): "Development of a Kiswahili text to speech system", In INTERSPEECH-2005, 1481-1484.