[Elsnet-list] Speech Synthesis and Recognition / Machine Translation at Cambridge University

Bill Byrne wjb31 at cam.ac.uk
Tue Jun 3 12:23:13 CEST 2008

A position exists for a Research Associate to work on the EMIME  
("Efficient multilingual interaction in mobile environment") project.  
This project is funded by the European Commission within the FP7  
programme. The project aims to develop a mobile device that performs  
personalized speech-to-speech translation such that a user's spoken  
input in one language is used to produce spoken output in another  
language, while continuing to sound like the user's voice. We will  
build on recent developments in speech synthesis using hidden Markov  
models, which is the same technology used for automatic speech  
recognition. Using a common statistical modelling framework for  
automatic speech recognition and speech synthesis will enable the use  
of common techniques for adaptation and multilinguality. The project  
objectives are to

1. Personalise speech processing systems by learning individual  
characteristics of a user's speech and reproducing them in synthesised  
2. Introduce a cross-lingual capability such that personal  
characteristics can be reproduced in a second language not spoken by  
the user.
3. Develop and better understand the mathematical and theoretical  
relationship between speech recognition and synthesis.
4. Eliminate the need for human intervention in the process of cross- 
lingual personalisation.
5. Evaluate our research against state-of-the art techniques and in a  
practical mobile application.
See the EMIME website for more information: http://www.emime.org/

This is an opportunity to work in a research group with a world- 
leading reputation in speech recognition and statistical machine  
translation research. There are excellent opportunities for  
publications, travel and conference visits. The group has outstanding  
research facilities. For suitably qualified candidates there may also  
be the chance to contribute to the MPhil in Computer Speech, Text and  
Internet Technology (http://mi.eng.cam.ac.uk/cstit/).

The successful candidate must have a very good first degree in a  
relevant discipline and preferably have a higher degree as well as  
experience in acoustic modeling for speech synthesis and/or  
recognition. Expertise in one or more of the following technical areas  
is also a distinct advantage:
- speech recognition with the HTK toolkit (http://htk.eng.cam.ac.uk)
- speech synthesis with the HTS HMM-based Speech Synthesis System (http://hts.sp.nitech.ac.jp 
- weighted finite state transducers for speech and language processing
The project focus is acoustic modeling but experience in statistical  
machine translation is also an advantage.

The cover sheet for applications, PD18 is available from http://www.admin.cam.ac.uk/offices/personnel/forms/pd18/ 
  Part I and Part III only, should be sent, with a letter and CV to Dr  
Bill Byrne, Department of Engineering, Trumpington Street, Cambridge,  
CB2 1PZ, (Fax +44 01223 332662, email wjb31 at cam.ac.uk).
Quote Reference: NA03547, Closing Date: 30 June 2008

The University values diversity and is committed to equality of  

Bill Byrne
Department of Engineering, University of Cambridge

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