Blog 31st Aug 2018

The spelling of names is difficult for everyone, but there are times when it’s even more than just spelling, what if there are diacritics in the name. Diacritics are those other marks that should be there to make the pronunciation correct such as accents or cedilla written over or under the letters.

Time-consuming and tricky to solve?

When a name appears that should have a diacritic, correcting this can be very time-consuming unless you are using these characters all the time. I don’t know about you, but do you know how to type a ç on your keyboard? On a mac, for example, it is <alt> + c.

Often it is harder than that. For example, François is not an English name, so if you are using an English speech recognition system it might not recognise the pronunciation at all. Resulting transcriptions may be ‘France Soir’ and many other things that sound possible. Occasionally ‘Francois’ may be transcribed which is nearly right, but still missing the cedilla.

Can Speech Recognition fix that too?

The Custom Dictionary feature in Speechmatics ASR products can help solve these kinds of issues like a human would. Just adding the name to the Custom Dictionary can work, however that will not work all the time, and for many cases such as the one in this example above. But all is not lost Speechmatics can help you here too.

Watch this space for our newest feature addition, coming soon…

Watch the example below!

Ian Firth, Speechmatics

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