The evolution of baby talk to real talk


Talk about capturing your child’s every precious moment. Deb Roy from MIT decided to capture and track their family’s every movement. With a series of fisheye lenses in every room in their house, they hoped to learn how we understand language through the use of context. Of course, what better subject than their own baby.

Using cutting edge vocal analysis software and speech transcription BlitzScribe, the Roy’s were able to parse 200 terrabytes of data representing 90’000 hours of their life. This vocal parsing software was able to capture the emergence and development of words in their son’s vocabulary.

Unreal 3-D visualizations allowed his team to zoom through the house like a dollhouse and map the utterance of each word in its context.

In a landscape-like image with peaks and valleys, you can see that the word “water” was uttered most often in the kitchen, while “bye” took place at the door.

The aim is to some day bring the platform into more commercial contexts such as charting how social media environments interact with televisual live broadcasting events.

Perhaps with this information, we’ll know better how to communicate with our own children.

Source: PSFK