Speech Server 2007 Enters Beta Test
Microsoft said this week that it's shipping the first beta test version of
Speech Server 2007 on schedule, and plans to release the final code this fall.
Speech Server 2004 heralded Microsoft's entry
into the interactive voice response system marketplace two years ago. The 2007-branded
version will be the third release of the system.
The new Speech Server 2007 will feature support for VoiceXML, an established
W3C standard that Microsoft had avoided supporting until now in favor of Speech
Application Language Tags (SALT). The new version will support both.
"With the newly included VoiceXML support, customers will be able to write
World Wide Web Consortium's VoiceXML 2.1-compliant applications within Microsoft
Visual Studio 2005 and deploy those applications, or existing VoiceXML 2.1-compliant
applications, on Speech Server 2007," says a Microsoft statement.
Speech Server 2007 also features a .NET Framework-based application programming
interface (API) that will provide low-level access to core speech server functions,
letting customers build speech-enabled application using various languages,
The update will also feature a Dialog Workflow Designer that is based on the
Windows Workflow Foundation. Its aim is to provide a drag-and-drop tool for
designing applications and call flows. The designer produces a .NET assembly
that is expressed as a Visio-style diagram. Because it is based on the Workflow
Foundation, the Dialog Workflow Designer can initiate other workflows including
business rules, back-end operations or Web services calls.
the last update almost exactly a year ago, when it shipped Speech Server 2004
R2 (Release 2).
The key new features added in Speech Server 2004 R2 were support for all-in-one
server configurations and support for U.S. Spanish and Canadian French speakers
at no extra cost in the original version designed for U.S. English speakers.
It also offered VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) support from industry partners.
Stuart J. Johnston has covered technology, especially Microsoft, since February 1988 for InfoWorld, Computerworld, Information Week, and PC World, as well as for Enterprise Developer, XML & Web Services, and .NET magazines.