gender voice variants

Broome, Karen Karen.Broome at
Tue Dec 18 22:56:09 CET 2012

I guess I'm thinking of use cases like:

	1. Zuzana and Jiři use a Czech version of an international retailer web site. 

	2. The retailer's app knows when the speaker is male and when the speaker is female from user preference data. 

	3. A developer has supplied UI string data in XML to ask Zuzana and Jiři "Are you ready to complete this purchase?" and stores these strings as XML data. (The strings are different whether spoken or written depending on whether the user is female or male. To ask a female if she is "hotový" in Czech would likely not endear female customers to the retailer.)

	4. Using the language identification data, the correct string for the user's gender can be pulled from XML data and displayed.


	1. A Czech videogame contains male and female characters.

	2. The game has a series of pop-ups, errors, and game messages that are parallel, but not identical, for female and male characters.

	3. The right string to display to the user is determined by the gender of the character and a language tag is used to distinguish the correct string for that character.

Surely we aren't thinking of web pages and screenreaders as the only use case for language tags? These are used in XML and web services where targeting a customer by gender may be relevant. There may be a technical reason Zuzana does not have a male companion. 


Karen Broome

-----Original Message-----
From: ietf-languages-bounces at [mailto:ietf-languages-bounces at] On Behalf Of Michael Everson
Sent: Tuesday, December 18, 2012 1:10 PM
To: ietf-languages at
Subject: Re: gender voice variants

On 18 Dec 2012, at 20:06, "Broome, Karen" <Karen.Broome at> wrote:

> I think that bot would have problems if trying to do that with Czech. There *might* be no text change, but for languages where there are changes, this seems important.

The Mac OS has only one Czech bot, Zuzana, a woman. She reads out whatever the text says. She does not change the text as if she were uttering it afresh. She reads aloud. That's all. 

The Mac OS has four French voices, Audrey, Sabastien, Thomas, and Virginie. They all read aloud. That's all. 

Michael Everson *

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