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Effective Self-Expression for People with Severe Speech Disorders

Award Information

Agency:
Department of Health and Human Services
Branch:
N/A
Award ID:
Program Year/Program:
2012 / SBIR
Agency Tracking Number:
R43DC012734
Solicitation Year:
2012
Solicitation Topic Code:
NIDCD
Solicitation Number:
PA11-096
Small Business Information
INVOTEK, INC.
1026 RIVERVIEW DR ALMA, AR -
View profile »
Woman-Owned: No
Minority-Owned: No
HUBZone-Owned: No
 
Phase 1
Fiscal Year: 2012
Title: Effective Self-Expression for People with Severe Speech Disorders
Agency: HHS
Contract: 1R43DC012734-01
Award Amount: $162,725.00
 

Abstract:

DESCRIPTION (provided by applicant): Speech generating devices (SGDs) offer people with difficult to understand speech (dysarthria) a synthesized speech replacement for their natural speech. However, people who require SGDs often prefer using their natural speech because it is perceived as normal and is cognitively less demanding for the speaker than other communication methods. Additionally, natural speech carries with it a sense of personal identity that synthesized speech cannot match. We propose a newgenre of communication device, named Real Talk, which augments an individual's natural speech ability instead of replacing it. We accomplish this through our unique speech recognition technology, which we developed specifically for individuals with dysarthria and that integrates tightly with our word prediction software. This combination of speech recognition and word prediction substantially reduces the typing required to produce messages. For this project we will improve our existing speech recognition system to use noise- tolerant microphones that enable accurate recognition in noisy environments. We will supplement natural dysarthric speech with a written transcript for face-to-face conversations and provide synthesized speech output for other communication environments. Individuals with dysarthria will evaluate the technology in laboratory and real-life settings and the impact of this device on communicative interactions will be measured. PUBLIC HEALTH RELEVANCE: The proposed device helps people to communicate effectively when they have physical disability and their speech is difficult or impossible to understand.

Principal Investigator:

Thomas Jakobs
479-632-4166
tjakobs@invotek.org

Business Contact:

Thomas Jakobs
479-632-4166
tjakobs@invotek.org
Small Business Information at Submission:

INVOTEK, INC.
1026 RIVERVIEW DR ALMA, AR -

EIN/Tax ID: 171070797
DUNS: N/A
Number of Employees: N/A
Woman-Owned: No
Minority-Owned: No
HUBZone-Owned: No