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Re: glibc 2.3.2 kills ViaVoice

Boris Daix <Boris.Daix@insa-lyon.fr> writes:

> Mario Lang <mlang@debian.org> writes:
>> It is sad to see such a good product die like this, after all, none
>> of the currently existing commercial speech synthesizers for Linux
>> do match ViaVoice's responsiveness and voice clarity, IMHO.
> So I won't even taste it.  Does IBM explain why they gave it up, and
> why they couldn't offer the source

I do not know of any existing official statement from IBM regarding
the discontinuing of the ViaVioice TTS engine for Linux.  I can only
speculate based on certain observations:
The main library provided by ViaVoice is libibmeci50.  At the time
when ViaVoice TTS for Linux came out, Speechworks was selling
the Eloquence engine as something called ECI 5.0.
I strongly suspect that IBM just bought a license for Eloquence,
and offered it for the Linux community for free.  Now, you
have to know that Eloquence was not cheap at that time.  SO I guess IBM
was tired of throwing money out the window at some point.
An additional indication for this theory is that ViaVoice actually
sounds very much the same as systems which use a Eloquence based
engine, just a little different.  Now, you need to know that most systems
these days use some eloquence version greater than 6.0.  They have
just improved over time and thats why they sound just a bit different.

OTOH, I do not think that IBM actually bought the source.  They probably
only had a license for the actual engine/SDKs.  Which also explains why they
can't open source it, even if they wanted too.

Note however, that all this is just speculation on my part.
If someone with a little more detailed insight can proof me wrong,
I'd be happy to hear the truth.

  Mario | Debian Developer <URL:http://debian.org/>
        | Get my public key via finger mlang@db.debian.org
        | 1024D/7FC1A0854909BCCDBE6C102DDFFC022A6B113E44

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