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In October I began working with the team at BBC Voice & AI, helping them with the forthcoming beeb assistant. It’s been fascinating contributing to this process, as the team develop their remarkably ambitious project.

The voice assistant was announced at the end of August, and is being developed by the team responsible for existing BBC voice experiences including CBeebies bedtime stories and interactive games.

From a technical perspective, the voice assistant will be based on a new technology called Songbird. This uses synthetic speech generation to “transform the BBC’s existing text-based journalism into audio” and “listen to questions, and find an answer from the BBC’s immense vault of pre-existing journalism”.

 

In addition, Beeb is being developed with the BBC’s radio archives in mind, and that it will be able to present people with relevant audio clips.

The Guardian Voice Lab

At the end of October I was offered a role working on a new initiative from The Guardian developing audio content for Google's Home smart speaker and Google Assistant. Guardian News & Media is pleased to announce the launch of Guardian Voice Lab - an in-house team...

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Strrr TV – Matthew Plummer Fernandez

In his Strrr episode, Matthew explores the role that algorithms play in everyday life and culture. From their beginnings in the simple animations of the 1970s and 80s, through to the cutting edge neural networks and artificial intelligence of today, Matthew reveals the various ways in which algorithms are playing an increasing central role in our lives.

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