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TTS videos (aka Speakonian videos, Speakonia TTS videos) are YouTube videos that involve text-to-speech (computer) voices and other speech synthesizers. Normally they are used for humor and entertaining purposes.

TTS videos

Earliest known instances:

2008

Inventors:

Thunderbirds101 et. al.

Status:

Airing

Style:

Comedy, humor

Thunderbirds101 and machinima are considered the first few people that made TTS videos, and a1130 is perhaps the first person to categorize his shows made with Scratch as "TTS videos."

HistoryEdit

TTS voices were originally made to read things to people who suffered from blindness. They were also used as a voice for the disabled. Stephen Hawking is probably one of the most famous examples of one who uses a TTS synthesizer to talk. However, most TTS voices were rather unnatural and rather harsh and robotic to most ears. Only recent efforts, such as AT&T Labs Natural Voices, IVONA, Cepstral, Nuance, and NaturalReader have tried to bypass this.

Despite the fact that TTS voices were considered unnatural to most people, they were often used as the main characters in TTS videos. Most famously, Thunderbirds101 (considered the veteran of TTS video making) used Microsoft Sam to read funny error messages and signs, while machinima made Microsoft Sam to portray Master Chief in his popular "Arby n' the Chief" YouTube series.

Earlier efforts by Thunderbirds101 and machinima used the "Natural" Microsoft Sam voice, where the voices were manually recorded with a microphone (a very inconvenient process). The other disadvantage of that was the video maker had to have Windows XP, as Microsoft Sam is not compatible with Windows Vista. However, after the release of Speakonia (hence the name "Speakonian TTS video"), even video makers using Vista could easily convert Microsoft Sam, Mike, and Mary's voices into sound files. Other voices were also made available, and this launched the birth of a series of voices, specifically Radar Overseer Scotty and others.

Later, TTS video makers such as Akriloth2160, WSAM0TV, RorytheRetroKid, and others joined YouTube, and soon after that many other less popular TTS video makers joined. With the genre this popular, "TTS videos" could be considered a subgenre of comedy.

The "TTS Army"Edit

Thunderbirds101 and others formed a "TTS Army," which was a group of TTS video makers. Their ranks are determined by when they joined YouTube and how much experience they have with video making. Thunderbirds101 is the general of the army with Akriloth2160 and some others as commanders [citation needed]. There are also enemies of the TTS Army, notably Unchi1999.

A1130, however, is not a member of the TTS army.

"TTS videos" arrive to ScratchEdit

The Scratch programming language has also been used to make TTS videos, with a1130 being one of the few that made them. Others include ShupaJakub and mikeben. A1130 however might be the first to actually call his TTS creations "TTS videos."

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