Microsoft to Launch Blockchain Partnership in Taiwan

Microsoft Taiwan, Digital China and Hot Cool plan to use blockchain to improve the financial, e-commerce, entertainment, and other industries
04 July 2018   475

A subsidiary of the technological giant Microsoft Taiwan announced a blockchain cooperation with Chinese companies Digital China and Hot Cool. This is reported by CCN.

The Alliance will implement the technology of the distributed registry in the areas of finance, e-commerce and entertainment.

Taiwan has first-class engineering and technical talents, and their innovative thinking cannot be underestimated. At the same time, it carries a solid manufacturing and R&D foundation, plus Excellent geographical location, with the superior conditions for the development of blockchain application, I believe that Microsoft’s tooling in the strategic layout of the blockchain, and citing the global partner resources, is bound to be the vision of the industrial application of the blockchain.
 

Sun Jikang

General manager, Microsoft Taiwan

The companies plan to create new solutions in the cloud services of Microsoft Azure Blockchain Workbench and MPS from Hot Cool. According to the general manager of Microsoft Taiwan Sun Jikang, these platforms will improve the computing power and security of the blockchain products that Digital China will supply.

CEO Digital China Sana Yutao believes that the Azure Blockchain Workbench service will reduce the time to create a blockchain-infrastructure in China.

As part of the cooperation, Hot Cool will act as an intermediary between state and corporate cloud providers.

Microsoft to Use AI to Create Human Voice

Synthetic voice is nearly indistinguishable from recordings of people
27 September 2018   547

Researchers from Microsoft recorded computer voice, imitating human speech. To overcome the difficulties of the traditional model, they used neural networks for speech synthesis. Microsoft promises to provide support for 49 languages ​​and the ability to create unique voices for the needs of companies in the near future.

Synthesis of speech with the help of neural networks involves comparing the stress and length (so-called prosody) of the speaker's speech units, as well as their synthesis into a computer voice. In systems of traditional speech synthesis, prosody is divided into acoustic and linguistic analysis, controlled by various models. As a result, the speech is noisy and indistinct. Representatives of Microsoft argue that in the model of neural synthesis two stages are combined into one, so the voice sounds like a real one.

The developers are convinced that the synthesis of speech with the help of neural networks will make it more natural to communicate with virtual interlocutors and assistants. Moreover, it will enable you to convert e-books into audiobooks and will allow you to change the scoring of built-in navigators.

Microsoft Neural TTS
Microsoft Neural TTS

Azure computing power is available for real-time use, and Azure Kubernetes is responsible for this. Simultaneous application of neural synthesis of speech together with traditional speaks about expansion and increase of availability of service. At the moment, there are a female voice named Jessa and a man named Guy.

Microsoft is competing in speech recognition and synthesis technologies with Google, which updated its services in late August 2018. Google Cloud announced the release of a stable API for the synthesis of speech Cloud Text-to-Speech with the experimental function of audio profiles and support for several new languages.