This paper discusses the development and evaluation of a Speech Synthesizer for Plains Cree, an Algonquian language of North America. Synthesis is achieved using Simple4All and evaluation was performed using a modified Cluster Identification, Semantically Unpredictable Sentence, and a basic dichotomized judgment task. Resulting synthesis was not well received; however, observations regarding the process of speech synthesis evaluation in North American indigenous communities were made: chiefly, that tolerance for variation is often much lower in these communities than for majority languages. The evaluator did not recognize grammatically consistent but semantically nonsense strings as licit language. As a result, monosyllabic clusters and semantically unpredictable sentences proved not the most appropriate evaluate tools. Alternative evaluation methods are discussed.
Harrigan, Atticus; Mills, Timothy; and Arppe, Antti
"A Preliminary Plains Cree Speech Synthesizer,"
Proceedings of the Workshop on Computational Methods for Endangered Languages: Vol. 1
, Article 9.
Available at: https://scholar.colorado.edu/scil-cmel/vol1/iss1/9