Apparently I'm blessed with a Voice Dictation friendly accent and tone. I can pretty much use most Voice Dictation systems, including the ones on Android, Dragon Naturally Speaking, and PocketSphinx. The results aren't mind-blowing-ly good, but if it's quiet and I speak clearly and train anything that gets missed, I get reasonable results.
Watching a child play with both the Android and PocketSphinx recognizers this weekend made me realize just how much I'm privileged. His accent is pretty much identical to mine, but the recognizers just don't seem to pick up his (much higher) voice anywhere near as well using the same setup. Of the dozens of phrases he tried, there were only 2 or 3 that were close (off by a word or two), and the vast bulk were just laughable, maybe a single syllable or a word would match, but the rest would just be gibberish. Possibly his (quiet) voice just cut below the word/noise threshold? Will need to figure that out before I can may any toys that actually use the tool.
Of course, being a child, he thought it was hilarious how bad the results were when using PocketSphinx (without any training, mind you). I'll likely code up a toy that does the recognition and then reads it back using festival (he loves the "type and have festival read it" toy) so he can play with it more (and see the random words, 'cause hey, random words is good words). The results with Google/Android, however, were a deadly serious matter of not getting to the pantomime zebra video he wanted to watch.
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