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Re: CSS3 Speech Module

From: Daniel Weck <daniel.weck@gmail.com>
Date: Thu, 21 Apr 2011 17:52:26 +0100
Cc: Doug Schepers <schepers@w3.org>, Gylling Markus <markus.gylling@gmail.com>
Message-Id: <2D556921-CBD6-46CD-9C0A-10E756EF3357@gmail.com>
To: public-xg-htmlspeech@w3.org
Thanks Doug for forwarding this announcement. I am sure there are  
opportunities for collaboration.

I've been lurking on this list for a while, so first let me introduce  
myself, and explain what we are trying to achieve:

I became the editor of the CSS3 Speech Module on behalf of the DAISY  
Consortium [1] which is taking part in the revision of the EPUB open  
standard. EPUB v3.0 is a major milestone based on modern web  
technologies (HTML5, CSS3, SVG, MathML, etc.) and will provide a rich  
platform for accessible, interactive multimedia e-Books. The EPUB3  
specification is due to be released this summer, and is being  
maintained [2] by the IDPF (International Digital Publishing Forum) [3].

The DAISY Consortium itself specializes in accessible publications for  
visually-impaired and otherwise print-disabled users. It is a not-for- 
profit organization that created and maintains the DAISY open standard  
for "digital talking books" (ANSI/NISO Z39.86) [4], which relies on  
both pre-recorded audio and speech synthesis to implement synchronized  
text + audio books. The DAISY format utilizes the W3C SMIL3 standard  
[5] (Synchronized Multimedia Integration Language), and this core  
functionality - amongst other DAISY things - is being pushed into the  
mainstream EPUB3 standard.

As you can see, we have a vested interest in helping CSS3-Speech and  
other specifications to move along the W3C Recommendation Track. I  
have also been watching the developments within the HTML Speech  
Incubator Group with great interest.

As it stands now, support for speech synthesis within EPUB3 relies on  
three W3C specifications:

# PLS (Pronunciation Lexicon Specification) [6] -- We propose a "rel"  
extension [7] for the "link" element in (x)HTML documents (see  
corresponding EPUB3 section [8])

# SSML (Speech Synthesis Markup Language) [9] -- We actually "inline"  
the phonemes functionality via a namespaced attribute (see  
corresponding EPUB3 section [10])

# CSS3 Speech Module [11] -- We include the entire module but we  
ignore the phonemes property, which is judged at risk because it  
breaks the principle of separation between content and presentation  
(see corresponding EPUB3 section [12])

Both PLS and SSML have reached Recommendation status, so our goal is  
to stabilize CSS3-Speech by the end of year 2011 (Last Call Working  
Draft or Candidate Recommendation). Note that because of the release  
schedule of EPUB3, and because of the unstable nature of key CSS3  
Modules at this point in time, we are considering using prefixes for  
CSS properties (ongoing discussion).

I would appreciate if TTS experts on this list could take a look at  
the current editor's draft of CSS3-Speech! We have identified 3  
issues, listed just before the table of contents. Please use the  
public CSS mailing-list to provide feedback, using [css3-speech] in  
the email title.


Looking forward to hearing back from you.
Kind regards, Daniel













On 21 Apr 2011, at 08:26, Doug Schepers wrote:

> Hi, folks-
> I just wanted to make sure that you are aware that the CSS3 Speech  
> Module draft spec [1] has just updated for the first time since 2004.
> I don't know too much about it, but it seems that this is now being  
> driven by Daniel Weck of the DAISY Consortium.  The abstract is as  
> follows:
> [[
> CSS (Cascading Style Sheets) is a language for describing the  
> rendering of HTML and XML documents on screen, on paper, in speech,  
> etc. CSS defines aural properties that give control over rendering  
> XML and HTML to speech. This draft describes the text to speech  
> properties proposed for CSS level 3, and is a re-work of the  
> informative CSS2.1 Aural appendix [CSS21]. These are designed for  
> match the model described in the Speech Synthesis Markup Language  
> (SSML) Version 1.0 [SPEECH-SYNTHESIS].
> ]]
> Perhaps this isn't relevant to your work, but in case it is, I  
> thought you might like to take a look to see if there is an  
> opportunity for collaboration.
> [1] http://www.w3.org/TR/2011/WD-css3-speech-20110419/
> Regards-
> -Doug Schepers
> W3C Team Contact, SVG, WebApps, Web Events, and Audio WGs
Received on Thursday, 21 April 2011 16:53:02 UTC

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