# Math Text-to-Speech

*Making math accessible through synthetic speech** *

The standard way of communicating mathematical information is by using a distinct notational language rather than the "plain English" found in most literature. The notational language of mathematics combines a broad array of numbers, Roman and Greek alphabetic characters, and a host of other non-alphanumeric symbols with precise meanings which may change depending upon the math discipline and the context in which the symbols are used.

Example:

A. Formula for the volume of a sphere: $V=\frac{4}{3}\pi {r}^{3}$

In addition, the typographical convention of math notation uses a two-dimensional layout where much of the meaning of an expression is implicit based upon the spatial position of one symbol in relation to another.

Example:

A. Implied multiplication: the meaning of the expression $3\left(x+y\right)$
includes the implied multiplication of three times the variable x plus three times the variable y.

A. Formula for Standard Deviation $\sigma =\sqrt{\frac{1}{N}\underset{N}{\overset{i=1}{{{\displaystyle \sum}}^{\text{}}}}{({x}_{i}-\mu )}^{2}}$

$\left|x\right|$ could mean "the absolute value of x", while $\left|X\right|$ could mean "the cardinality of the set X"

The ability to provide effective text-to-speech for mathematics content has increased steadily over the past decade, due largely to the development and support of Mathematical Markup Language (MathML), which provides a standard, open-source method to encode math notation within digital content in such a way that synthetic speech engines can automatically generate math speech. However, many people in academic and professional settings are unfamiliar with the concept of math text-to-speech. The aim of this section of the MeTRC website, therefore, is to provide an introduction to computer-generated math speech and to discuss the issues which are related to making math accessible through synthetic speech.

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