The original demonstration of this technique was a simple talking clock. The prompts consist of 24 simple utterances of the form
The time is now, a little after quarter past two in the afternoon.The basic template of which is
The time is now, EXACTNESS MINS HOURS DAYPART.We have successfully built a large number such clocks, some of which are available on-line at http://festvox.org/ldom/ldom_time.html.
Not counting recording time, this takes around 3 minutes to build. Such clocks have also been built in languages other than English, such as Chinese and Nepali. On a recent visit to Barcelona, we built a talking clock in Catalan, a language we had no previous synthesis experience in. We designed the prompt list, based on a native informant, and used an existing English synthesizer to cross synthesize the prompts which is adequate enough for automatic labeling. The 12 prompts were recorded and in less than an hour we had a high-quality natural sounding Catalan talking clock.