Speech articulation and hearing perception software for the Web

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Morawej, Ali
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Fonetix is a multimedia software kit developed for the Web for improving speech language and hearing perception. The initial phase involved development or modification of existing Web applications to accommodate interactive repositories of audio and video and an assessment of which aspects are most suitable for deployment on the Web. This included the display of animated mid-sagittal views of the vocal tract in real-time on Personal Computers. Several existing systems allow patients to experiment with notions of pitch and volume but are of limited benefit without a speech pathologist present to assist in improving the person's speech. The addition of animation allows the person to see how the mouth, tongue, teeth, and lips (Oral Cavity), are used in producing phonemes or isolated words. The Fonetix system permits users to see in a graphical and an easily comprehensible way how closely they approach the targeted speech pattern. Fonetix also provides valuable comments and suggestions on the modification to articulation needed to improve speech. This is useful for patients in rehabilitation, who have problems with speech, resulting from various injuries such as, stroke, brain damage, hearing loss, and head injuries, and also for students who are learning English as a Second Language (ESL). The types of tools being developed here are intended to augment current practices and techniques being used by speech language pathologists. The long term goal of the Fonetix system is to allow speech pathology patients to interact in a meaningful manner with a speech pathologist albeit remotely over the Internet. (Abstract shortened by UMI.)