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Voice notification possible?

Discussion in 'General Electronics Discussion' started by celestine, May 3, 2010.

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  1. celestine


    May 3, 2010
    hello there everyone! I'm new here and i hope to get along with you all^^...anyway, i have this task which is:
    Voice notification when a drink is selected at a vending machine.For instance, at a drink vending machine, when i select coke as my option, it's suppose to say "Coke Selected".

    i have a few ideas running in my mind:
    1) Is there anyway for me to store a prerecorded voice in a PIC and play it out using a speaker without interfacing to the laptop.Just simple PIC-Speaker control...

    2) i have an option of interfacing the PIC where the PIC is used to handle external triggers such as the buttons at the vending machine. What i propose to do is when a drink is selected, the external trigger will trigger the PIC to send a message to the laptop to play a prerecorded sound file.

    which is the simplest and most effective method? or are there simpler alternatives which is not listed...pls do advice!thanx in advance!
  2. (*steve*)

    (*steve*) ¡sǝpodᴉʇuɐ ǝɥʇ ɹɐǝɥd Moderator

    Jan 21, 2010
    There are several ways to go.

    One way is to generate phonemes and link them together to form words.

    Another is to store words, and link them together to form phrases.

    Another way is to store complete phrases.

    These are in increasing order of memory use, and decreasing order of complexity.

    These days memory is cheap and the latter approach is no longer prohibitive as it was in the 80s when there were several phoneme generating chips you could purchase.

    If you consider the memory required, you may find that you would need to interface a PIC to some memory device.
  3. celestine


    May 3, 2010
    i see thanx for the from what you say, I have to interface PIC to memory, then to actually play the file in the memory using the PIC to the speaker? one question, how do i store the prerecorded voice to the memory? assuming it's already digitalised....what format do i store it as?
  4. (*steve*)

    (*steve*) ¡sǝpodᴉʇuɐ ǝɥʇ ɹɐǝɥd Moderator

    Jan 21, 2010
    It's really up to you. The easiest way is a whole series of 8 bit values defining the waveform. Storing it uncompressed this way may require (say) 4k to 32k per second, but if you're using a memory card with a couple of gigabytes, that's not a real problem.
  5. 55pilot


    Feb 23, 2010
    Do you manufacture vending machines? If not, how do you plan to actually interface this with the vending machine?

    One real life problem is that in most vending machines the product that is being dispensed can be changed in the field. How will you allow the voice to be changed to match that?

  6. celestine


    May 3, 2010
    haha oh dear, nope i'm not a vending machine manufacturer, i'm just a second year E&E engineering student...i'm just trying to make a simple "when i select a drink, voice will notify what i have selected" thing...we are allowed to use laptop as output device but i doubt that its easier than the memory mtd as steve suggested...this is my assignment given which we have 10 weeks to build a vending machine which can perform the following:
    1)Be able to accept coins and notes and return exact change
    2)Voice notification when a particular food/drink is selected
    3)Be able to display all food and drink stock status

    additional features(optional):
    1)payment via smart card/RFID technology cards
    2)notification in multiple languages
    3)machine can send wireless signal to control centre to notify machine and stock status eg:machine out of stock or machine malfunction
    well, anyway thank you so much everyone especially steve for your help...i'll do more research on interfacing memory to PIC...haha...appreciate your suggestions and ideas!^^
    Last edited: May 3, 2010
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