Five companies joined the "In Beta" session to demonstrate technology that wasn't quite ready for full-production release but was certainly interesting, enlightening, and useful. These products ran the gamut, from in-the-weeds technology to business management. Some products were in pre-alpha release, while others were in beta, but all received a great deal of attention from show attendees. Deutsche Telekom Laboratories showed its pre-beta tool, Multimodal Application Builder. Loquendo showed a pre-alpha tool -- actually, a research-in-progress tool -- that it hopes will be able to add emphasis into its Loquendo TTS output. Voxeo's Tropo platform is aimed squarely at ordinary Internet developers who want to add telephony, automatic speech recognition, and text-to-speech capabilities to their applications.
The Latest & Greatest IN BETA Some products were in pre-alpha release, while others were in beta, but all received a great deal of By Moshe Yudkowsky attention from show attendees. ive companies joined the “In Beta” session to a central directory of phone numbers and a central F demonstrate technology that wasn’t quite ready for full-production release but was certainly interesting, enlightening, and useful. These products “reach” number. The system compensates employ- ees for inbound and outbound business calls; per- sonal calls remain private. The system also ran the gamut, from in-the-weeds technology to busi- integrates with customer relationship management ness management. Some products were in pre-alpha software applications, such as SugarCRM. release, while others were in beta, but all received a great deal of attention from show attendees. RebelVox showed its pre-alpha re-engineering of the basic telephone call. Instead of dialing a Deutsche Telekom Laboratories showed its pre- number and then waiting for the other person to beta tool, Multimodal Application Builder. If you’ve either pick up or for the call to go to voicemail, the ever tried to build a multimodal application, you user simply selects the other person’s telephone know just how difficult it can be to juggle all of the number from his smartphone’s screen and begins moving parts. to speak. The recipient can break in and listen to The goal of this tool is to generate 80 percent of a the call live; or, if he chooses not to take the call, multimodal application’s code automatically, and to the call is saved as a recording. create output that is compatible with the standards RebelVox intends to integrate the underlying work of the World Wide Web Consortium’s Multi- platform into other products and to offer a full modal Working Group. The tool is built on top of the multimodal application programming interface. industry-standard Eclipse development editor and Some interesting unanswered questions about this accepts drag-and-drop graphics and/or XML descrip- platform still linger: For example, if someone calls tions as input; the output is CCXML, SCXML, speech me, and I break into the call toward the end, then recognition grammars, HTML and/or Flash for is it possible to hear what was already said so the graphical interactions, etc. Developers then add the person who calls me doesn’t have to repeat him- back-end integration that lets the application manip- self? Because this platform transforms how we ulate the data. think about phone calls, I think it’s safe to say we will see some interesting emergent
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