Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Free Chat to Speech Translator (and Kevin) in Second Life

Fair warning - I'm going to do at least two non-travelogue posts in the next few days. This would be the first and no I'm not happy with these photos - just ignore the jagged edges and focus on the important stuff k?

I saw a tweet about a Free Chat to Speech Translator offered by Ferd Frederix and thought it sounded pretty cool. An earlier version (I think) of the translator won the Helen Keller Scripting Contest in July of 2009. I've been playing with it inworld and learned the following:

  • It automatically detects which language you want the chat translated to.
  • I know it's a "translator" but it will convert chat to speech even if both are in the same language. It seems like a useful tool for those who have impaired sight - keeping up with chat is a huge problem.
  • It's not instantaneous of course, so you'd get behind if the chat volume is big. But at least you'd know what was being said.
  • It's incredibly easy to use. The instructions include:
· Super-easy to use.
· 27 spoken languages from 58 typed languages
· Attach to any HUD position with Auto-adjust
· Super Tiny HUD
· No download or installation needed
· Speaks Objects and/or Avatars
· Supports all Unicode fonts, including accent characters
· 58 languages accepted as input from Second Life
This Chat to Speech prim may be attached as an unobtrusive HUD, or placed in an area where people gather, or may worn on your avatar as a prim. The script is quite simple and very low lag
  • Although it says it must be used on an external browser - it actually works inworld without the browser being necessary. However, I haven't tested yet to see if everyone around you can hear it as well - that would be disruptive. :)
  • Update: I meant to include a bullet here talking about the ability of this tool to give a voice to those who don't have one. Thank you to Uccello Poultry for reminding me of this in the comments! :)
  • There are different versions for different viewers apparently. I've only tried the one for V2.

You can view a demo of the translator and then go pick up your own copy here. Two tips, I found the sim very laggy so be warned. Also if you click on the display you'll get the instructions - they aren't included with the translator. :)

While I was taking photos for this post a bird came over to join me. Kevin is adorable .... so I brought him home. Check out all the fabulous free stuff before you leave to play with your translator.


Uccie Poultry said...

OH. MY. GOSH. Thank you! I"m an RL mute who often gets ignored in Second Life as Voice Users gradually ignore chat as group conversations proceed. Maybe this will help. If nothing else, I got a chance to re-discover Ferd's place. I spent over an hour just wandering around, having a nice conversation with the "speaking" avie on the Website the text-to-speech gadget uses. She looks like she is a "live" avie somewhere so I searched for her, but had no luck.

Honour McMillan said...

Yay! and you are very welcome :)