Microsoft says speech recognition technology reaches “human parity”

Artificial intelligence just keeps getting smarter and smarter. Now Microsoft researchers say they’ve developed speech recognition technology that can grasp a human conversation as well as people do.  The work out of the Microsoft Artificial Intelligence and Research department was published in a scientific paper this week. It shows that when the speech recognition software “listened” to people talking, it was able to transcribe the conversation with the same or fewer errors than professional – human – transcriptionists.  The technology delivered a word error rate (WER) of 5.9 percent, which is roughly the same as that of people who were asked to transcribe the same conversation.  “We’ve reached human parity,” Xuedong Huang, Microsoft’s chief speech scientist, said in a press release. “This is an historic achievement.” The achievement is no…

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