The age of artificial intelligence: Voice-to-text app helps make the arts inclusive in Taipei

Ms Liu Yi-ruu wanted to make post-show talks and pre-show introductions accessible to those with hearing disabilities. Taiwan AI Labs founder Ethan Tu said Yating has achieved an accuracy level of between 90 and 95 per cent in sectors such as custome
A pre-show discussion using voice-to-text application Yating that was held last month at Taiwan's National Theatre and Concert Hall. Yating is hooked up to the speaker's microphone at one end and a projector at the other, and provides instantaneous translations from the spoken word to Chinese text.PHOTO: TAIWAN'S NATIONAL THEATRE AND CONCERT HALL
Ms Liu Yi-ruu wanted to make post-show talks and pre-show introductions accessible to those with hearing disabilities. Taiwan AI Labs founder Ethan Tu said Yating has achieved an accuracy level of between 90 and 95 per cent in sectors such as custome
Ms Liu Yi-ruu wanted to make post-show talks and pre-show introductions accessible to those with hearing disabilities.PHOTO: TAIWAN'S NATIONAL THEATRE AND CONCERT HALL
Ms Liu Yi-ruu wanted to make post-show talks and pre-show introductions accessible to those with hearing disabilities. Taiwan AI Labs founder Ethan Tu said Yating has achieved an accuracy level of between 90 and 95 per cent in sectors such as custome
Taiwan AI Labs founder Ethan Tu said Yating has achieved an accuracy level of between 90 and 95 per cent in sectors such as customer service, financial and legal services. PHOTO: TAIWAN'S NATIONAL THEATRE AND CONCERT HALL

Ms Liu Yi-ruu wanted to make the performing arts more inclusive to people with disabilities, and decided to tap artificial intelligence technologies.

At first, the executive and artistic director of Taiwan's National Theatre and Concert Hall hired human transcribers to provide subtitles, after learning that people with hearing disabilities could not participate in post-performance talks and pre-show introductions.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Sunday Times on August 11, 2019, with the headline 'Voice-to-text app helps make the arts inclusive'. Print Edition | Subscribe