Internet service “Text-to-speech synthesis” (TSS) is a high-quality tool for text processing. The system is based on free and the most widespread on the Internet scripting PHP programming language and serves to voice Belarusian or Russian texts inputted by a user. Text-to-speech Synthesizer processes a text automatically and forms an audio file that a user can listen to, download and save to a computer.
Figure 1 – An Interface of the text-to-speech synthesizer
To get a synthesized speech a user needs to select language, insert or print a text in the input field and click “Generate synthesized speech!” (Figure 1).
For better quality of processed text, one can use the following marks:
plus / + / or aqute / ы́ / – to arrange main stress (for example, “звыча+йны“);
equal to / = / or gravis / ё̀ / – to arrange secondary stress (for example, “тэ=леперада+ча“);
circumflex / ^ / – is used between two words to combine them into complex phonetic word (for example, “на^стале+”, “сказа+ў^бы”).
In order to download or save a generated file a user needs to click the appropriate links Listen to generated speech and download generated speech file.
While processing an electronic text to speech synthesis, the system generates additional intermediate results. Among them there are a normalized text, phonemic text, allophonic text, etc. In order to see intermediate results of the text-to-speech synthesizer it is necessary to put a tick next to the checkbox “Show log information”.
Among other additional intermediate results the service provides an information on each text character – its name. Like any computer-linguistic system, the synthesizer claims to use all characters that are appropriate to the settings of the system. For example, the use of a character, which does not correspond to a particular alphabetic system (Cyrillic, Latin alphabet, etc.), results in incorrect text-to-speech synthesis. In such cases it is necessary to find mismatched character and replace it with the correct one (Figure 2).
The text-to-speech synthesizer also depicts data of all the words found in a text, parts of speech, tags (contracted notations of morphological word characteristics), a list of words with stresses, placed by a user, a list of words that are absent in the system database (see Figure 2).
Figure 2 – Intermediate results of TSS: information on characters, normalized text with morphological tags, stressed tokens, unknown tokens
Figure 3 – Intermediate results of TSS: a list of homographs, intonation markers, a list of phonemic and allophonic words
Trying to determine the position of a word stress, speech synthesizer checks each word of an input text on a variation of its reading in accordance to the information provided in dictionaries, there is a search for words with the same spelling and different stresses. Information about the words that have ambiguous stress position are displayed in the window Homographs. Also, a user receives information about intonation markers (Information markers), a list of phonemic (Phonemes) and allophonic (Allophones, Allophones information) words (Figure 3).
An additional feature of the synthesizer is transcription generator which outputs text in 4 formats: Cyrillic, international (IPA), Simplified IPA transcription and X-SAMPA (Figure 4). More information about each of the formats can be found in the given service page “Transcription Generator“, where links to electronic resource that were used are presented.
Figure 4 – Intermediate results of TSS: four transcription formats
In addition, a user has a posibility to download files with the intermediate results of TSS, by clicking appropriate links (Downloading).
Service Page: http://corpus.by/TextToSpeechSynthesizer/?lang=en