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Re: legal questions regarding machine learning models

> I mentioned Voxforge in my previous email. Their goal is to use their
> free spech data to train models with HTK and use the models with
> Julius. You can get the source code of HTK after registration on their
> website but the license has severe restrictions so HTK is not free
> software. Julius is a free software speech recognition engine that can
> use models trained with HTK. Note that HTK is pretty much THE speech
> recognition framework in the speech recognition community. If you
> consider that the ultimate source of a model is not only the data but
> also the software used to train it, then Voxforge models built with
> HTK can't be free, even though the data were free. Is it forbidden for
> someone to release an image made with Photoshop as free?

As I understand it, this depends on what you mean by "free". It is quite
possible to distribute these models under a free license, even under one
which requires distribution of source. The source code would then be the
Voxforge data plus the parameters given to HTK. It would not include the
source code of HTK, as HTK acts in this process like a compiler.
However, a corresponding Debian package would be in contrib at best (and
that only, if HTK can be shipped in non-free), because the package would
have a build-dependency on HTK.
I guess, in the long run your community needs a free replacement of HTK.

Again, this is only how I understand things.

Best regards,

  Mark Weyer

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