Communication skills are at the heart of work, love, life and human relationships and speech is a huge part of that. Without speech and communication skills we wouldn’t be able to share emotions and ideas. As these two areas are so important there has been a boost in technological research to help people make themselves understood. So today we are looking at some of the most amazing technological developments in the world of speech and communication.
Children With Autism
The University of Hertfordshire recently developed a robot named Kasper. He is a child-like talking robot that has been designed to help children with autism develop important social skills through learning activities and games. Launched back in 2005, Kasper was developed through a combination of spanning robotics, psychology, assistive technology, autism therapy and harnesses technology. It has been used in schools, under the supervision of teachers and researcher however recent developments have produced a wireless and more personalised version of the robot that can be used directly by parents and teachers using a tablet.
Parents and teachers alike will be able to use the robot to play games that encourage autistic youngsters to mimic and discuss different facial expression or even to pinch him and discuss why he cries or looks sad. This revolutionary communication technology is planned to be produced as a mass market product in the future helping all autistic children to develop improved social skills and emotional understanding.
Stroke Patients & Speech Therapy
Stroke sufferers who suffer with chronic speech impairments as a result of their stroke is a devastating and life altering condition. However there have been many improvement in technology that are helping stroke patients overcome their speech impairments. People can check out physical therapy billing software reviews to get an idea of how far this area of technology is advancing. One example of an amazing technological development in this area is from the research team at Sheffield University. New computerised treatment takes out the need for months of months of therapy and allows patients to treat themselves at home with a carefully planned programme designed to steadily rebuild speech. This is done with a high-intensity stimulation through words, images and sounds that are presented in order to re-trigger damaged nerve systems.
When humans listen to speech we have a natural condition that is extremely forgiving. We can make out conversations against noisy backdrops like traffic noise, large crowds of people, or even just a TV on in the background. Essentially we are able to filter out what we want or need to hear against noise that doesn’t require our attention. There has been a huge surge of technological companies working to close that gap between human and robotic listening abilities and it is only recently that robots have begun to start catching up. Converting audio to text and speech synthesis is a huge focus for researchers looking to create machines that interact fast, naturally and that constantly adapt and learn as we do. Although there is still a way to go scientists predict that in the not too distant future we will have a new generation of speech technology that will be able to conquer different accents, complex expressions and will make speech technologies more usable and natural.