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Technology has brought JFK’s final speech back to life

JFK Assassination Day

President John F. Kennedy was supposed to give a speech in Dallas on November 22nd, 1963, but he was assassinated on the way, and he never got to deliver those remarks.

Now, almost 55 years later, modern technology made it possible to recreate the speech in JFK’s own voice, and you can finally listen to.

Voice synthesis is what allowed experts to bring the speech to life, Business Insider explains. They used 116,777 voice samples to create the illusion of a fluent performance from JFK. The president never recorded the speech before the assassination, but the 2,590-word text survived.

Commissioned by The Times, the JFK speech was recreated by Scottish voice company CereProc.

831 separate JFK recordings were used to sample hits voice, each of them only 0.4 seconds long. The project took two months to complete as the company stitched the sounds together to form the entire speech.

The speech was dedicated to the Graduate Research Center of the Southwest, but it’s still relevant today, in a world where populism is reaching new heights. Here’s an excerpt:

This link between leadership and learning is not only essential at the community level. It is even more indispensable in world affairs. Ignorance and misinformation can handicap the progress of a city or a company, but they can, if allowed to prevail in foreign policy, handicap this country’s security.

In a world of complex and continuing problems, in a world full of frustrations and irritations, America’s leadership must be guided by the lights of learning and reason or else those who confuse rhetoric with reality and the plausible with the possible will gain the popular ascendancy with their seemingly swift and simple solutions to every world problem.

The full speech is available behind The Times’ paywall, and the text version is available at the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, at this link.

Chris Smith started writing about gadgets as a hobby, and before he knew it he was sharing his views on tech stuff with readers around the world. Whenever he's not writing about gadgets he miserably fails to stay away from them, although he desperately tries. But that's not necessarily a bad thing.