Giving the Critic Back His Voice
Ricky Ross discovers how one Scottish company is giving back the freedom of speech by creating artificial voices with genuine human inflection and emotion. We've come a long way from 'Hal' in 2001: A Space Odyssey. Today, one small Edinburgh-based company is at the forefront of creating artificial voices that sound remarkably like the real thing, and that's because they are.
Critic Roger Ebert had governed America's movie tastes for over three decades when thyroid cancer robbed him of his voice. Enter Cereproc. They've managed to piece together a voice much akin to Ebert's own by using his old audio recordings. So what are the implications of this groundbreaking development for ordinary people, and how will it change the way we relate to the human voice? Songwriter and broadcaster Ricky Ross finds out.