The first face-to-face Teflon meeting in Helsinki, September 2022

In 5-6 September, 15 researchers of Aalto University, Tampere University, Karolinska Institutet, University of Oslo and NTNU (Trondheim) gathered in the Campus of Aalto University for the first face-to-face meeting of the Teflon project. The project has been running already for almost 1.5 years, but due to the pandemic, our kick-off and all other meetings have been only virtual. Actually 4 of us still had to participate remotely due to sudden Covid-19 cases in NTNU’s team etc, but for the rest this was a really delightful experience to meet and have in-depth discussions of the project, science, technology and everything else.

We had two full days including discussion sessions about the data, evaluations, automatic speech recognition, game design, automatic and human pronunciation assessment, experiment design, publications, dissemination and project management. Because we were still in the early stages of building the children’s pronunciation game, collecting and annotating the data and training the automatic assessment, the focus was clearly on planning the next steps of the project.  On Monday evening we continued after the project to have dinner in downtown Helsinki and enjoy the good company and delicious food in the restaurant Emo.

The next steps in the project include finishing the game codes, developing multitask systems and faster speech processing servers, repeating the previously run tests on the new Finnish, Swedish and Norwegian data, finishing the human assessments for these data, fix word lists and other specs for the game for each language, and recruiting speakers for the remaining training data.