Imagine that you call your computer to read back your e-mails, instructing it to call you back when an expected mail arrives. Further more imagine your car telling you how many kilometers the fuel left in your tank will cover, then displaying a map of local service stations within that range. It would be wonderful if your personal weighing machine can instruct in voice about your extra pounds and advise you about the ways to shed them out. The foundation for these kinds of applications is being laid today with the emergence of new specifications such as SALT that have fostered the kind of broad industry support necessary to take speech technology and its related benefits to a much broader audience, to a wider range of devices, with a wider range of service capabilities.
“SALT is a speech interface markup language. It consists of a small set of XML elements, with associated attributes and DOM object properties, events and methods, which apply a speech interface to web pages. SALT can be used with HTML, XHTML and other standards to write speech interfaces for both voice-only (e.g. telephony) and multimodal applications.”
Microsoft announced SALT-based Microsoft Speech Platform, which includes an enterprise-grade speech-recognition engine developed by Microsoft. Launched in May 2004, MSS 2004 R2 is built on .NET technologies and is the first product in its class to allow companies to deploy telephony-only DTMF (dual-tone multi-frequency, or touch-tone keypad) applications, speech-enabled telephony applications, and multimodal (mixed speech and visual) applications. As a Speech Application Language Tags (SALT)-based solution, Speech Server follows the Web application deployment model, using an ASP.NET-based Web server as the application server. The two main components of the MSS platform are the Telephony Application Services (TAS) and Speech Engine Services (SES), which include Automatic Speech Recognition (ASR), Text-to-Speech (TTS) and prompt manager. In August 2005, Microsoft announced that as part of its continued efforts to help make speech mainstream, it is expanding its speech technology efforts beyond the call center and interactive voice response markets into the broader enterprise unified messaging market by integrating speech technologies into a future release of Microsoft Exchange Server.
More information about speech here
The SALT Forum