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Weird Voice Navigation Prompts in Streets & Trips 2013?
SpadesFlush
Larry said
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...Also, S&T voice prompts have Street names on by default but there is a setting to turn them off and return to just "in 500 yards, turn right".
My personal preference is for hearing the street/road/highway names even if garbled; the more information I have, the more likely I am to make the correct maneuver. It seems to me better for MSFT to fix this flagrant mis-reading (US=You South) than for the users to suppress all name prompts. If the product is flawed, I am more inclined not to buy it rather than to turn off its features.
GoneNomad
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It seems to me better for MSFT to fix this flagrant mis-reading (US=You South) than for the users to suppress all name prompts.
Especially since we (and they) all know this problem still exists years after the first S&T had voice annunciation.
I know that TTS in general isn't perfect, but I'm pretty sure they could fix "Yoo-South" and the handful of others like it with a fairly simple patch for any recent version of S&T. But I guess if they ever do fix it, their "fix" will be to force an upgrade to Windows 8, rather than patch it with a service pack.
Ken in Regina
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Originally Posted by GoneNomad
For example, it correctly pronounced the name "Bogota" (in New Jersey) which the Garmin app pronounced like the city in Columbia.
Not being from New Joisey and not knowing anyone there it was my take that the Garmin got it right and the TomTom was totally wacked out. Since my ears are trained to the more global pronunciation I had no idea at all what the TomTom said at that turn. It sounded like gibberish. So I would have been in trouble.

That's one of the biggest problems with text-to-speech algorithms: which localization of the language to use.

Not being from in or near New Jersey, it's my view that the more global pronunciation should be used. Obviously someone who lives in the area and knows the colloquial pronunciations would disagree.

Clearly Garmin sides with folks like me and TomTom agrees with the New Jersey crowd. It's hard to call either of them wrong.

And it's the perfect illustration of the many decisions that have to go into text-to-speech. Given all the ways it could get messed up I remain moderately amazed at how well it works, overall.

...ken...
Ken in Regina
Quote:
Originally Posted by GoneNomad
Especially since we (and they) all know this problem still exists years after the first S&T had voice annunciation.
I know that TTS in general isn't perfect, but I'm pretty sure they could fix "Yoo-South" and the handful of others like it with a fairly simple patch for any recent version of S&T. But I guess if they ever do fix it, their "fix" will be to force an upgrade to Windows 8, rather than patch it with a service pack.
Does Streets&Trips actually have text-to-speech built in? I thought it just used the Windows text-to-speech engine? That would put it outside the control, and probably even the influence, of the S&T developers.

...ken...
GoneNomad
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Originally Posted by Ken in Regina
Not being from New Joisey and not knowing anyone there it was my take that the Garmin got it right and the TomTom was totally wacked out. Since my ears are trained to the more global pronunciation I had no idea at all what the TomTom said at that turn. It sounded like gibberish. So I would have been in trouble.
It's not difficult to hear what each unit said, starting at 4:47, if anyone wants to. If you want to consider it gibberish, that's your choice, of course. FWIW, it's the correct one for Bogota, New Jersey: The borough's name is pronounced /bəˈɡtə/ buh-GO-ta, unlike Bogotá, capital city of Colombia, whose name is accented on the final syllable.

I have seen other examples that have convinced me that TomTom pronounces street names better than most, or maybe all, the others, including Garmin, but I doubt that you care about those either. Pardon me for forgetting you're in Canada, where American English is an foreign language
Ken in Regina
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Originally Posted by GoneNomad
I have seen other examples that have convinced me that TomTom pronounces street names better than most, or maybe all, the others, including Garmin, but I doubt that you care about those either.
True. In my experience all of the text-to-speech systems do their share of producing entertaining pronunciations. Combined with the odd data in the map files that navigation apps have to deal with, I still remain impressed that they generally produce useful understandable results.

So, yes, I don't care much about the differences since none of them are perfect. I choose my navigation devices/apps based on other things that are much more important to me and simply chuckle at the occasional odd pronunciation. If I really don't like it I will simply turn it off. It is no factor in my purchase decision.

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Pardon me for forgetting you're in Canada, where American English is an foreign language
Just so. To quote Professor Higgins in one of my favorite musicals, My Fair Lady, referring to the English language, "In America, they haven't used it for years!"

...ken...
t923347
Quote:
Originally Posted by GoneNomad
I have seen other examples that have convinced me that TomTom pronounces street names better than most, or maybe all, the others, including Garmin, but I doubt that you care about those either.
Street names, maybe, city names, not so much. I'll admit I haven't used my TomTom for a year or more now but when I did I could not believe how it completely chewed up pronouncing Los Angeles. That's just one example we found in southern California. Didn't give us much faith in the street name pronouncements when it couldn't get a city name anywhere near right.
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