About this time in the rush to develop new technologies, I’m starting to feel like a semi-truck driver.
Most of them are time-honored professionals, putting in the miles to get a decent wage, but apparently that’s not good enough. Driverless 18-wheelers are inevitable, they say.
Now, too, Synthetic voice algorithms, or artificial intelligence-driven programs that approximate the sound of a real human are getting better and better.
So, like the guys in the big-rigs, voice-actors are ready to sunset, hang up their mic cables, and get retrained as football coaches, I guess…or health-care workers. They haven’t fiigured out how to digitize those professions yet.
Clearly people who hire voice talent think they are just paying too much for the privilege of having a real human voice their projects, and this is the next natural extension of the digital revolution.
Below is a link to the very latest on AI research into the human voice in an Engadget article. It’s actually quite revealing in the analysis of what intonations catch the human ear, and how they’re trying to build that into a program.
Assessments like: “...It’s becoming increasingly clear that for a machine to seamlessly stand in for a human being, its users must surrender a part of their autonomy to teach it. And those users should understand what they stand to gain from such a surrender and more importantly, what they stand to lose…”
“…The future is no longer about developing a single ideal voice that appeals to the widest audience possible. That’s just a stopgap measure on the path toward the real goal: to creat a voice that, like yours, changes in response to the human beings around it…your voice — the musicality, the tempo, the accent and especially the pitch — changes depending on the person you’re talking to…”
Hmmm. Reminds me of my VO coach telling me to visualize who I’m talking to first, right?
Here’s the link: