Who should voice the USS Enterprises computers?

Discussion in 'Future of Trek' started by GhostFaceSaint, Nov 20, 2009.

  1. Captain Pike

    Captain Pike Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Yeah I was going to say Bobcat, but Ozzy Osborne is simply impossible to beat..
  2. Gecko of Gorn

    Gecko of Gorn Commodore Commodore

    May 12, 2001
    Gecko of Gorn
    ^ Keith Richards? :D
  3. FreddyE

    FreddyE Captain Captain

    Oct 15, 2009
    I think it should always be Majels voice...and I believe its actually what they plan. I heard she did not only record the lines for XI but also a BIG archive of different other stuff. That way they can splice together everything they need. And for the very low amount that stuff that can not be done that way they could just use a good soundalike.
  4. Alpha_Geek

    Alpha_Geek Commodore Commodore

    Oct 10, 2003
    Central VA, US
    Steve Hawking?
  5. Captain Pike

    Captain Pike Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    I've got the Tom Tom Ozzy voice too, but it's an impersonator. A rather ordinary one at that :/
  6. John Picard

    John Picard Vice Admiral Admiral

    James Earl Jones or Christopher Walken.
  7. AnyStar

    AnyStar Captain Captain

    Sep 28, 2009
    Orbiting Planet Plastic
    "WHOA! you see, unable ... to comply."
  8. jefferiestubes8

    jefferiestubes8 Commodore Commodore

    Mar 8, 2009
    New York City
    For CBS Television to build a library of computer voice words is is major project. It is not impossible but it takes time. If they start on it now they will have a very usuable voice library of samples for Star Trek XII.
    We're talking thousands of hours of computer voice session recordings.

    If all of Majel Barret's recordings for TNG, VOY, ENT were done on digital audio tape (DAT) then surely they could sample them all and use a voice-to-text speech recognition program to create full transcripts from which to create the database from.
    Wikipedia mentions
    After words they would need syllables and consonants to form other words.
    The problem is the inflection would not always be correct. The larger the library with more options for inflection of the same word or group of words the better.
    This is similar to a sample library created for a virtual instrument like a piano for musicians. They have gotten a lot better in the last 10 years even though virtual instruments have been around surely since the 1988 when I heard a MIDI sound module in 1991 called E-mu Proteus 1000 that had a virtual violin and a virtual piano. Their "Perfect Piano" which was only 32 Megabytes.

    A recent product released for $350. is Steinberg The Grand version 3 is a library of 32 Gigabytes of 5 different recorded pianos:the Yamaha C7, the Boesendorfer 290 Imperial, the Steinway D, Nordiska Pianofabriken upright piano, and the vintage Yamaha CP80 Electric Grand.
    They sample each note at various volume levels of how hard the key is pressed, and whether the footpedals are pressed or not. So when it is played by a MIDI keyboard that is touch sensitive (how hard you press the keys) it sounds like you are playing a real piano. The $350. cost is geared to medium to high end musicians, or producers who want the sound of a high end piano but cannot afford to record at a recording studio with a great piano. The artist can record in their bedroom on a cheap keyboard and then their MIDI data is played back through a virtual piano program like this and the output is recorded. When mixed with other instruments such as a rock band you really can't tell it's not a real piano.
    Actually you can buy a software version of a virtual orchestra and many samples of many instruments and that is how many TV show music scores are done. Trek luckily for many years has used a live orchestra during TNG.
    While that is a virtual piano a virtual voice library of the USS Enterprise for Star Trek XII could be created as it is much less computer voice needed than a few episodes of the next series 6 which may or may not be set on the USS Enterprise itself even though Majel's voice was used for many ships in Trek.
    Even the Star Trek XI digital file recordings done (at her home) in the last year could be used in this library. I bring up the digital medium the voice would have been recorded on as there is no background tape hiss and with digital it sounds the same 5, 10, 15, 20 years later as the day it was recorded as long as the tape can play back.

    Is it cheaper to hire a sound-a-like voice actor? Initally no, but the library once built would pay for itself the longer you used it. I can truly see something like this carrying the computer voice of Trek for many years. No residuals or day rates for a voice actor.
    Would fans know the difference? Yes.
    Would it matter that the voice didn't always have the perfect inflection? No as it is a computer and could be somewhat incorrect inflection, even in the 22-25th century...
    Maybe Rod Roddenberry's production company would make the library and license it to CBS Television/Paramount?
    I think CBS Television/Paramount owns all of the original voice recording session tapes though.

    The closest thing to it is a modern video game which bring in voice actors to record hundreds of lines and then the producers cut them up so they can be placed in the game at the right time.

    mickmike mentioned:
    I would. It has been researched that the sound of a female voice is better remembered than a man's voice for informational purposes. I don't have a reference but I heard it maybe 10 years ago or read it somewhere then. So set your car's GPS unit to a female voice...
    Last edited: Nov 27, 2009
  9. SilentP

    SilentP Commodore Commodore

    May 21, 2009
    is in a very lonely Corner of the Circle
    Never heard that one, though I've heard that when it came for creating computer voices for military equipment, like aircraft and the like, they chose female voices, since due to the gender imbalance in the armed forces, a female voice would be more noticeable, so having a computer with a female voice would be of benefit.
  10. Johnnymuffintop

    Johnnymuffintop Commander Red Shirt

    Oct 16, 2008
    Riverside, CA

    Yes, Ellen McLain (who also does the voice of the announcer in Team Fortress 2 and Overwatch in Half Life)
  11. intrinsical

    intrinsical Commodore Commodore

    Mar 3, 2005
    My alma mater does a lot of research on natural language translation, including text-to-speech generation. I was taught enough to know that the bad inflection is simply due to the TTS algorithm occasionally choosing the wrong inflection. State of the art TTS now has a 98% to 99% accuracy at picking the right inflections so its not as bad as it was in the past. And at worst case, Paramount can simply hire a linguist to manually correct the 1% to 2% wrongly encoded inflections before getting the software to produce Majel's voice.
  12. Matt85

    Matt85 Cadet Newbie

    Nov 27, 2009
    i cant remember what her voice sounds like i dont usuly have the volume up that load for thoughs kind of films.
  13. spiff628

    spiff628 Ensign Red Shirt

    Feb 20, 2006
    Nichelle Nichols, who else!!!
  14. Joel_Kirk

    Joel_Kirk Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    With the way Gibney looks, she needs to be in front of the camera, not as a computer voice...:p
  15. vess

    vess Lieutenant Red Shirt

    Nov 30, 2009
    Patrick Stewart.
  16. jefferiestubes8

    jefferiestubes8 Commodore Commodore

    Mar 8, 2009
    New York City
    Majel's voice

    Intrinsical, are you talking about a sythesized virtual voice like something modeled such as a guitar amplifier's distortion or are you talking about using the actual original Majel voice recordings with a TTS interface?
  17. jefferiestubes8

    jefferiestubes8 Commodore Commodore

    Mar 8, 2009
    New York City
    Majel for Star Trek XII

    At the very least they could gather all the scripts that had computer voice and copy and paste all the computer voice text to a document with the episode # next to each grouping. When the script comes in for Star Trek XII they could at go on a searching expedition for all words needed (and then syllables for anything else). Pull all of the original DAT tapes for those episodes, load them into an audio editing system and cut up the words needed. copy & paste.
  18. AviTrek

    AviTrek Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

    Jan 31, 2006
    I remember reading that New York City MTA uses a female voice for information and a male voice for instructions.
  19. Mr. Laser Beam

    Mr. Laser Beam Fleet Admiral Admiral

    May 10, 2005
    The visitor's bullpen
    Well, only the newer trains do that. The older ones rely on the conductor to make the announcements, which are pretty much unintelligible. The new trains have prerecorded stuff, like "Stand clear of the closing doors, please!" (male voice) and "The next stop is..." (female voice) So yeah, you're right. ;)

    But that reminds me: How about Emma Clarke? She'd make a great computer voice. Especially if she does it like she did on those fake Underground voiceovers which I believe were the reason she got fired.

    "Would the gentleman pretending to read a newspaper, but who is actually staring at that woman's chest, please stop. You're not fooling anyone, you filthy pervert." :guffaw:
  20. FreddyE

    FreddyE Captain Captain

    Oct 15, 2009
    I read somewhere that some train company was using majels voice for internal automated messages.

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