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This Is The Voice Of Siri
Susan Bennett talks about being the first Siri (CCSS Level: Grade 7, Words: 432)
Oct 21, 2016 Science & Technology
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Apple has just released its latest operating system, Sierra, for their Mac computers. Now, for the first time, the voice of Siri was included and it is a s tandout new feature. Apple phone users are all familiar with Siri, the voice-activated personal assistant. Siri takes instructions, dials calls, arranges meetings and searches for information online. Siri has been around since 2011, but this is the first time it has appeared on desktop and portable computers.

What many people may not know is that the voice of Siri was made by a real person. Her name is Susan Bennett. With the release of macOS Sierra, there are now other Siri voices, including an English male and an Australian female. But Susan Bennett was the first, and most well-known Siri voice.

Susan Bennett is a voice-artist. That is she is a person whose voice is recorded and used for many purposes, such as advertising, airline announcements and talking phones. Apart from being the American female Siri, Susan is the voice of Delta Airlines worldwide.

Susan let it be known that all of the original Siri voices worldwide came from a store of digital voices that were recorded in 2005. She recorded four hours a day, five days a week for a month. Then, using a process called concatenation, pieces of text and even pieces of words were joined together into sentences. The reason the first Siri became so famous and well-liked is because she was the first concatenated voice that really sounded human.

Susan started off as a singer. She once sang a little song to try to get people to use the very first money machines (ATM's) for First National Bank. It was the first successful ATM in the US. This was before personal computers, and at that time no one trusted getting their money from a machine. Susan became the voice of the ATM, and suddenly people could relate to the machine, which made it a success.

When Siri was first released in 2011, a colleague of Susan emailed her to ask if she was the voice on the iPhone. She went to the Apple site to listen and recognized herself straight away. Apple had licensed her voice from a voice agency, but Susan found it a surprise not to have known about it in advance. It was a bit of a shock to be the voice in millions of people's pockets!

Apple have since changed many of their voices, but for a lot of people Susan Bennett will always be the one and only original "voice of Siri".

As used in the article, concatenation is a process of…
making sure that computer speech sounds more natural
joining pieces of words together to make sentences
choosing speech that doesn't have an obvious accent
making sure words are spoken or pronounced correctly
Susan Bennet's voice for Siri became so popular because…
hers was the first concatenated voice that sounded real
she had an American accent that everyone could understand
it was the first time that a mobile phone had speech installed
she had previously sung a little song for an American bank
What was it that shocked Susan Bennett after her voice was used on the iPhone for the first time?
Apple had used her voice without her permission
she was the voice in millions of people's pockets
she didn't know that her voice was going to be used
she didn't like the sound of her own recorded voice
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ad-vance

ahead of time, before something happens


v.提前

ad-ver-ti-sing

sending a message to sell more product


n.广告

an-nounce

give information, make something public


v.宣布/公布

an-nounce-ment

a public statement or notice


n.公告

an-nounce-ments

notices letting people know about something


n.公告

ap-peared

be seen or became noticeable


v.出现

as-sis-tant

a person or thing that helps


n.助理

ban

officially not allow


v.禁止

col-league

a person with whom one works


n.同事

di-gi-tal

electronic equipment that stores data on a computer


adj.数字

fa-mi-liar

well known for a long time


v.熟悉

fa-mous  

well known


adj.著名

fea-ture

something that stands out


n.特征

fe-male

girls, women


n.女性

for-ma-tion

arranged or lined up in a special way


n.队形

in-clu-ding

containing, having as part of the whole


prep.包含

in-struc-tions

directions or orders


n.说明    

league

placed in order by level or worth


v.盟约

lice

small, wingless, parasitic insects that live on the skin of mammals and birds


n.虱子

li-censed

getting an official license, with permission


v.领有牌照/合格的

on-line

while connected to a computer


adv.线上

o-pe-ra-ting

the system software that manages a computer


adj.操作

o-ri-gi-nal

the first


adj.原始/原版的

pro-cess

carrying out a series of steps

 


n.处理

re-cog-nize

know something having seen it before


v.认识

re-cord

the best or most ever measured    


adj.记录

re-late

feel sympathy or identify with    


v.涉及

re-lease

to let go


v.发布

re-leased    

set free, allowed to move


v.放出/发布

rus-ted

red or orange coating on iron when wet or in the air


v.生锈

stem

the main body or stalk of a plant or shrub, usually rising above ground


n.干茎

store

to keep something for future use


v.储存

suc-cess-ful

reaching the wanted result or target


adj.成功

voice-ac-ti-va-ted

made to work by voice


adj.语音激活

world wide

all around the world, everywhere


adj.全世界