Talking technology - Leonie Watson

We've been talking with technology for longer than you might think, but despite increasing conversational sophistication, relatively few ways exist to help us make artificial speech sound human. Find out how to use Speech Synthesis Markup Language (SSML) with the Amazon Echo or Google Home, and the Web Speech API in the browser; how the CSS Speech module might be useful (if only it were more widely supported); and how we might be able to solve some problems by making things talk.

About the Speaker

leonie watson

Léonie is Director of TetraLogical; a member of the W3C Advisory Board; co-Chair of the W3C Web Platform Working Group; and a member of the Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP) Advisory Committee.

Amongst other things, Léonie is co-organiser of the Inclusive Design 24 (#id24) conference; co-author of the Inclusive Design Principles; and mentor to young people interested in the fields of accessibility and inclusive design. She is also a Microsoft Most Valued Professional (MVP).

Léonie is often found at conferences, talking about web standards, accessibility mechanics, and pushing the boundaries of inclusive design (with existing technologies like SVG, HTML, ARIA, and JavaScript, as well as new technologies like AI and WebVR). She has also written about these things for Smashing magazine,, and Net magazine, as well as on her own site Tink.UK.

In her spare time, Léonie likes reading, cooking, drinking tequila, and dancing (although not necessarily in that order)!


08:30 Registration
09:20 Opening
09:30 Talk #1
10:10 Coffee, Speedmeeting
10:40 Talk #2
11:20 Talk #3
12:00 Talk #4
12:30 Lunch
13:30 Lightning Talks
14:30 Talk #5
15:00 Coffee, Speedmeeting
15:40 Talk #6
16:20 Talk #7
17:00 Talk #8
17:30 Drinks/dinner
20:00 Doors Close