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Re: [css3-speech] gneutralh voice

From: Andrew Thompson <lordpixel@mac.com>
Date: Tue, 24 Jul 2012 13:08:24 -0700
Message-id: <7ADBBF3B-9407-47CC-9CD9-B23FF48743A1@mac.com>
Cc: Daniel Weck <daniel.weck@gmail.com>, "www-style@w3.org" <www-style@w3.org>
To: "Jens O. Meiert" <jens@meiert.com>
Note that Apple's API actually uses Neuter which is a subtle difference. I wonder where the term neutral came from?

The reality is back on the 80s and 90s Apple shipped a bunch of comedy voices like Deranged and Bad News which are fun and occasionally show up in songs but not very practically useful. Many of those report Neuter gender, iirc, which makes sense if you listen to them. They could never be mistaken for naturalistic speech, though some may sound superficially male or female their gender simply isn't an interesting attribute. Neuter simply ensures they don't show up of you query for a more sensible male or female voice. 

On Jul 24, 2012, at 10:00 AM, "Jens O. Meiert" <jens@meiert.com> wrote:

>> I have always interpreted the 'neutral' value as "if possible, pick a voice
>> that doesn't sound male or female in an obvious manner. Note that this
>> may select a more robotic voice, or for example a human-sounding
>> stylised voice".
> To me it seems the problem boils down to the fact that, per common
> understanding, only humans speak, and that humans have a gender. I can
> see why we would extend the spec to include machines having voices too
> but I wonder whether such a voice wouldnft inevitably be compared
> against a human voice, and hence either be perceived male or female.
> This may not be the most scientific of problem descriptions but
> somehow this looks to me as if there isnft really such thing as a
> neutral voice. Or that gneutralh as a voice family needs to either be
> there gpolitically,h to maintain the idea of a neutral voice, or to
> indicate no preference (for which gautoh may be more appropriate).
> Perhaps I just lack imagination though.
> -- 
> Jens O. Meiert
> http://meiert.com/en/
Received on Tuesday, 24 July 2012 20:09:19 UTC

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