Workshop on Speaker biometrics and VoiceXML 3.0

5-6 March 2009

Hosted by SRI International, Menlo Park, CA, US

Latest News

The deadline to send position papers has been extended to 31 January 2009. To participate in the Workshop, please submit a position paper (either as an individual or organization) to <member-sivws-submit@w3.org> by 11:59 EST on 31 January 2009.

To help with planning, please let us know as soon as possible if you are interested in attending by sending the following information to <member-sivws-submit@w3.org>:


SRI International


The W3C Voice Browser Working Group seeks to develop standards to support secure access to the Web and Web services using biometric, speaker identification and verification (SIV). Interest in SIV is growing in both the private and public sector. That interest is motivated by a variety of factors, primarily cost and labor issues; convenience; and the growing number of regulations/laws governing data privacy and security that have been put in place exist at international, national, local, and industry levels.

Unlike other biometric technologies, speech recognition, and speech synthesis, there are no standards specifically governing the use of SIV. ISO/IEC 19784-1 (called “BioAPI”) is a generic, biometric application programming language that was designed to support SIV in non-telephony deployments. Its utility for SIV Web-services applications has not yet been fully explored. The three other SIV standards projects (Media Resources Control Protocol (MRCP V2) - Internet Engineering Technology Forum; NCITS 1821-D Speaker Recognition Format for Raw Data Interchange - VoiceXML Forum & InterNational Committee for Information Technology Standards; and ISO/IEC 1.37.19794-13, Voice Data - International Standards Organization and the International Electrotechnical Commission) are all still under development.

Despite the growing interest in SIV, the lack of standards – especially for applications using Web Services – is a market and technology barrier.

Workshop Goals

The goal of this workshop is to identify and prioritize directions for SIV standards work as a means of making SIV more useful in current and emerging markets. The Voice Browser Working Group is considering following three activities:

The main outcome of the workshop will be the publication of a document that will serve as a guide for meeting thee above goals.

Scope of the Workshop

This workshop is focused on SIV within VoiceXML 3.0. The scope of this workshop is restricted in order to make the best use of participants' time. In general, discussion at the workshop and in the position papers should stay focused on the workshop goal. We may identify new standards for SIV in addition to the existing or in-process SIV standards.

We expect SIV to support a wide variety of privacy policies, but the topics of the relative merits of various privacy policies and which policies are subject to legislation are outside the scope of this workshop.

Expected Participants

We expect several communities to contribute to the workshop:

Requirements for Participation

Position papers will be the basis for the discussions at the workshop. Each organization or individual wishing to participate must submit a position paper by the date shown below.

All workshop attendees must submit a position paper. Papers must be submitted by email to member-siv-submit@w3.org before 18 December 2008 31 January 2008.

Papers should:

Position papers should be written in English. Examples may be illustrated with non-English languages with an English explanation. All papers should be 1 to 5 pages, although they may link to longer versions or appendices. Allowed formats are valid HTML or XHTML, PDF, or plain text. Papers in any other format (including invalid HTML/XHTML) will be returned with a request for correct formatting.

Participation in the workshop is conditional upon acceptance of the position paper by the program committee.

Accepted position papers will be published on the public Web page of the workshop. Submitting a position paper comprises a default recognition of these terms for publication.

The Program Committee will ask the authors of particularly salient position papers to explicitly present their position at the workshop to foster discussion. Presenters will be asked to make the slides of the presentation available on the workshop home page in HTML, PDF, or plain text.

See the schedule below for submission and registration deadlines.


Possible topics include, but are not limited to the following:

  1. Integration of XML and nonXML formats
    1. Should speaker biometric data be represented in binary or xml formats? Should both formats be standardized?
    2. Should developers use a programming API or an XML-based API? Should both formats be standardized?
    3. Can commands, events, and data structures be normalized or standardized?
    4. What is the relationship with MRCP V2 and how should that relationship evolve?
    5. What is the relationship with BioAPI and how should that relationship evolve?
    6. Can audio formats be normalized for interoperability and conformance testing? How to determine that normalization?
  2. Security data
    1. What mechanisms should be used to maintain the security of voice models and voice model databases?
    2. What mechanisms should be used to maintain the additional nonbiometric security data?
    3. What mechanisms should be used to secure the transferring of voice biometric data between client and server?
  3. The role of multimodal biometrics
    1. How to combine biometric and/or nonbiometric techniques to reach authentication decisions?
    2. What is the role of multimodal technology in authentication?
    3. What is the role of EMMA or other multimodal annotation techniques?
  4. Other topics relevant to authentication

This workshop is focused on SIV within VoiceXML 3.0


Participation will be governed by the following:

Workshop Organization

Workshop Chairs:

Program Committee:

The current program committee consists of:


The workshop program will run from 8:30 am to 6 pm on both days.


The workshop will be held at SRI International, Menlo Park, CA, US

Information about hotels will be distributed with acceptance letters.


Information on registration, hotel and logistics will be sent with the notification of acceptance.

Important Dates

Date Event
18 December 2008
31 January 2008
Deadline for position papers. Submit position papers to member-sivws-submit@w3.org.
2 February 2009 Acceptance notification and registration instructions sent. Program and accepted position papers posted on the workshop website.
16 February 2009 Deadline for registration.
5 March 2009 Workshop Begins (8:30 AM)
6 March 2009 Workshop Ends (6:00 PM)
23 March 2009 Conference minutes and conference deliverables posted on the workshop website.

The Logistics, the Presentation Guideline, the Agenda and the Minutes are also available on the W3C Web server.


Judith Markowitz, Ken Rehor and Kazuyuki Ashimura, Workshop co-Chairs

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