The CEO of Techmo, Bartosz Ziółko has been awarded with HiPEAC Technology Transfer Award for a technology transfer project called Sarmata Speech Recognition System.
The award is granted by the Steering Committee of the European Network on High Performance and Embedded Architecture and Compilation to reward and celebrate the transfer of research results into industry either through technology licensing or providing dedicated services to an existing company or through the creation of a new company. A technology transfer is defined as a contractually documented joint, and privately funded, academia-industry project or technology license agreement, with the goal of bringing a concrete research result into industrial practice. The award consists of a certificate for the academic team members involved in the technology transfer and a one-time financial award.
Sarmata 2.0 is an automatic speech recognition (ASR) system that aims to work in a difficult environment. It is designed to recognise short phrases or single word commands in Interactive Voice Response (IVR) systems over telephone. In such scenarios total speech input is usually shorter than 10s, so any attempt to use speaker adaptation or normalisation techniques faces the problem of overfitting to a small amount of data. Moreover, various telephone channels and codecs modify signals in very different ways. Sometimes the channel type or codec is known from the VoIP service provider, however it may be misleading because the information provided concerns only properties of the last section of the route. The authors of Sarmata 2.0 also observed that some GSM codecs cut out high frequency Polish fricatives at the beginning of the speech signal.
Sarmata 2.0 supports context free grammars in form of Speech Recognition Grammar Specification (SRGS). It is a WC3 standard, and is widely used in commercial systems. Decoding words with grammar allows the decoder to prune phrases that do not belong to a given formal language.