IBM Research Debuts Sign-language Translation System

Sep 18, 2007

IBM has developed a system called SiSi (Say It Sign It) that automatically converts the spoken word into British Sign Language (BSL), which is then signed by an animated digital character or avatar. SiSi brings together a number of computer technologies. A speech recognition module converts the spoken word into text, which SiSi then interprets into gestures, which are used to animate an avatar which signs in BSL. Upon development, this system would see a signing avatar pop up in the corner of the display screen in use--whether that be a laptop, personal computer, TV, meeting-room display or auditorium screen. Users would be able select the size and appearance of the avatar. This system intends to complement the existing provision, allowing for situations where a sign language interpreter is not available in person.