The SALT Forum, a debate forum for multimodal and telephony systems protocols, announced that it has published a profile for the World Wide Web Consortium’s (W3C) Scalable Vector Graphics (SVG) markup language. SVG is an XML-based language for describing advanced graphics that enables developers to deliver a visually rich user interaction experience in their web applications. By adding SALT to SVG, developers can further enhance the user experience with interactive spoken interfaces coupled directly to the visual interface.
“SALT seamlessly adds new speech capabilities to the versatility of SVG that enhance its capacity to make web applications more powerful and easier to develop. Graphics and speech play complementary roles in making information readily accessible no matter what the situation may be,” said Antoine Quint, SVG consultant for Fuchsia Design and co-author of the SVG specification.
The SVG specification has gained considerable support since its release by the W3C, capturing the attention of leading web developers. Its ability to render high-quality graphics on displays of varying size and resolution, along with a lightweight design that reduces computational requirements, has made it particularly attractive to manufacturers of cell phones, PDAs and other portable devices.
SVG with SALT provides the means to build mobile applications for these devices with speech interfaces that are accessible without looking at or touching the equipment. SVG with SALT can be used to provide speech “hot spots” within a graphic or provide spoken commands for scrolling and zooming the display. It can also be used to embed descriptive services for the visually impaired directly within a graphic, streamlining the workflow process.
The SALT specification was designed to add speech input, speech output and call control capabilities to practically any XML-based language. The SALT profile for SVG demonstrates the potential of this flexible and platform-independent approach for responding to technology advances that support improved content delivery.
“The SALT profile for SVG is an example of the exciting industry developments now underway to realize the full potential of SALT. The SALT Forum continues to take an active role in refining, enhancing and supporting the SALT 1.0 specification as an open industry initiative,” commented Glen Shires, chairperson of the SALT Forum’s Technical Working Group.
Mr. Shires, Principal Engineer of Application Enabling Software for Intel’s Network Processing Group, was recently elected by Forum members to lead the activities of the Technical Working Group, which included development of the SALT profile for SVG. Mr. Shires co-authored much of the SALT 1.0 specification and is active in multiple W3C working groups.
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