SoccerPhone 2007

By | April 11, 2007

SoccerPhone is a speech application I wrote about five years ago so I could get live updates on Major League Soccer scores whenever I was away from an Internet connection. I wrote the application in VoiceXML, JavaScript, and Python. Since SoccerPhone gathers the live data by scraping information from the HTML scoreboard page on the MLS website, I often have to update my code when the MLS website changes each year. Fortunately, this year’s change was fairly minor.

  1. Call 1-877-33-VOCAL (877-338-6225)
  2. When asked for your PIN, enter or say 5425 (5425 = KICK)
  3. When asked for your userid, enter or say 6575425 (6575425 = MLSKICK)
  4. After you hear me say “Welcome to SoccerPhone”, you can say an MLS
    team name, such as “Houston Dynamo”, or say “all teams”.

Since SoccerPhone lets you request this week’s match results for a team by saying the team’s name, I also have to update the GRXML grammars when new teams are added. While I could dynamically generate grammars from the team names that the app extracts from the MLS website, it’s not that big of a deal to manually maintain the grammars. Also, manually coding them allows me to tune the gramars for better recognition rates.

If you’ve call the app before, you’ll be disappointed to hear that I am using the same lame voice talent, i.e., me. On the good side, though, I re-recorded a bunch of the prompts using Audacity. I also eliminated a little more of the TTS by adding additional recordings. I really should take advantage of the great recording studio we have at Voxify, but then I would feel obligated to use a real voice talent.

I haven’t updated the code at the SoccerPhone SourceForge project site, yet. But I will get to that soon. I got sidetracked by looking into converting the CVS repository to Subversion.

2 thoughts on “SoccerPhone 2007

  1. JohnB

    Surely some of the voice talent is into soccer – and would say a few things for free…

  2. Robert Post author

    Hmmm, maybe I’ll call up that Beckham lad after he makes it over to our side of the pond and see if he will do a few recordings for me.


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