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(51) Session 10: The 'Big' Questions - YouTube
Siri mek mi speak like ah freshwater Yankee\ Halcyon M. Lawrence (Towson University)

Developments in speech technology have launched us into a new practice of oral customs facilitated by voice assistants that respond to a litany of commands: change, review, set, create, play, cancel, and on. Premised on the promise of natural language use for speakers, these technologies encourage their users not to alter their language in any way for successful interactions. Yet, for large groups of persons who attempt to use these technologies, virtual assistants are unresponsive and frustrating. If you speak English in dialect or a foreign accent, speech technologies practice a form of othering that is biased and disciplinary, imposing a form of post-colonial assimilation to standard accents that “silences” the speaker’s socio-historical reality. To understand the innate bias of speech technologies, is to understand both the socio-economic context in which these technologies are developed and the long history of assimilation that non-native speakers of English have practiced in order to participate in global economic and social systems. This continued assimilation is particularly egregious given that the number of second language speakers of English has already exceeded the number of native English language speakers worldwide (Crystal 2003). The result is the sustained marginalization and de-legitimization of accented speakers of the English language. In this talk, I will discuss recent developments in field of speech technology and point to empirical work that is being done to ensure that “technology support for other cultures is not a feature of software design, but a core principle” (Nasser 2017).
voice  interfaces  accents  voice_recognition  colonialism 
5 days ago by shannon_mattern
Take the Spice Out
So that's why I grew up with bland food?
europe  npr  colonialism  cooking 
6 days ago by UltraNurd
St. John’s, Newfoundland. The oldest english - founded city in North America.
St. John's is the capital and largest city of the Canadian province of Newfoundland and Labrador. It is on the eastern tip of the Avalon Peninsula on the large Canadian island, Newfoundland.
Its name has been attributed to the Nativity of John the Baptist, when John Cabot was believed to have sailed into the harbour in 1497 and to a Basque fishing town with the same name. Existing on maps as early as 1519, it is the oldest city in North America.
Italian inventor Guglielmo Marconi received the first transatlantic wireless signal in St. John's.
Canada  UK  Colonialism  History 
13 days ago by dbourn

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