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Content archived on 2024-05-27

Voicexml trial for an open source reference implementation


PublicVoiceXML is about fine-tuning our VoiceXML implementation within a trial together with a radio station and making it available as an open source reference implementation.VoiceXML is a standardisation effort for telephony applications, that are connected to the Internet. IEEE has published through the W3C the specifications and is now issuing certificates. The IEEE VoiceXML forum has more than 500 industry members, including major Telcos and ISPs, but still only a few proprietary VoiceXML implementations are available. Being a member of that forum, and with support from the European Commission, we would be offering the first complete open source implementation and gain a lot of attraction in the voice application industry.We have already developed a VoiceXML subset - browser for a telephony based micro-payment service ( Within the project PublicVoiceXML, we would first fine-tune the toolkit together with a community radio station. When we have fulfilled their requirements and the toolkit has been stress-tested, we will go through the certification process and then publish the toolkit open source using our sourceforge - based development platform project will demonstrate open sourcel usage of a toolkit, foster its dissemination and help to build a sustainable business model. Making business seems to be straight forward with the target group for making support contracts already organized in a forum.Expected effects to be measured are about the affiliation of listeners of the radio station, the influence of making the toolkit open source on the dissemination process or possible revenue streams gained from offering consulting and customisation services.The consortium committed to perform the PublicVoiceXML trial is well balanced between a radio station producing local content 24 hours/7days as trial site and two software labs with expertise in voice related applications and embedding them into XML platforms.

The project's objective is to provide a European showcase for making a state-of-the-art software tool open source, after having passed stress testing and a conformance test and building business relations to the international telephony industry. In particular, our goals are to- stress test our VoiceXML tool in the production process of a radio station by the following 5 steps:
1. provide the radio station with a telephony gateway to their Internet services;
2. upgrade the radio station?s content management system using XML;
3. fine-tune our VoiceXML toolkit according to the needs of their users;
4. allow radio listeners to hear a personalised radio program via VoiceXML using the (mobile) phone;
5. allow radio users to use interactive features when dialling in to a radio show using VoiceXML:
- pass the conformance test of the IEEE VoiceXML forum;
- select the proper open source license model;
- bundle the open source toolkit PublicVoiceXML and put it on a shared workspace ( for further development;
- make PublicVoiceXML known to the telephony application community, e.g. via the VoiceXML forum.

VoiceXML is the new lingua franca for (mobile) phone users, who want to access data which is only accessible via Internet, and perform interactions. Applications that can be built with VoiceXML include car-sharing reservation, payment and banking services, hotel booking, traffic jam info, voice discussion forums or a news and feature service delivered on demand by a local radio station. With the proposed trial PublicVoiceXML two European software labs will be put into the spotlight of the telephony industry when offering their VoiceXML toolkit open source. What do we have, where do we start from? A VoiceXML browser has been developed for a micropayment service by one of the software partners, which also owns all IPRs. The browser is capable of many features as specified by the IEEE driven VoiceXML Forum, but not yet all of them. First, we will add more functionality and fine-tune our VoiceXML browser according to the needs of a community radio station. We will have an online questionnaire to be filled out by potential users. The results will influence the set-up of the service and how it is embedded in the radio stations portal. This radio station already makes usage of interactive telephony services for different purposes, however those services are not yet connected to the Internet. After successful set-up, the radio station will give us the opportunity to stress-test the application. Next, we do a conformance test with the VoiceXML forum, in order to check if our VoiceXML browser is compliant to their 1.0 specifications, as published by IEEE to the W3C.Having reached that important milestone, and after choosing the proper open source license model, PublicVoiceXML will be published on a shared workspace at An important part of the trial is to measure usage parameters together with the trial site, such as number of lines required, audio quality, computing resources required for on-the-fly conversion of audio files, listening behaviour, access m odes, etc. A separate workpackage on dissemination of results and exploitation will support the consortium for its decision making process on the business model to follow when offering consulting and customisation services.


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