5.4 Conclusions

As we have seen, the goal of the VisSE project is to develop a number of tools for the use of SignWriting effectively in computers. First, the recognizer will allow SignWriting to be used as input in a comfortable way. Users will not need to search for symbols, and then drag and drop them to the canvas, nor will they have to memorize an arbitrary mapping from ASCII characters to SignWriting symbols. Hand written transcriptions or existing images will be able to be processed, making the use of SignWriting practical for continuous use. Then, the description generator and the avatar will use this input to transform SignWriting transcriptions of signs into alternative representations, which will help users understand both the meaning and the use of SignWriting.

All the developed tools will be publicly released, and the full pipeline might include software that allows a user to dynamically input SignWriting into an interface and immediately watch its realization by the avatar. The data generated in the form of the corpus can also be transformed into a dictionary, one where words are stored and indexed directly in sign language. Often, sign language resources are only accessible via oral language glosses, but the use of SignWriting allows sign language to be the primary language in its own dictionary.

These are all future works worthy of research and development, which will benefit the Deaf community in Spain. But the methodology and principles used are not specific to Spanish Sign Language, so we expect they will be able to be adapted to other sign languages.

Apart from the results benefiting the Deaf community, there will also be results for the language resource community. The data collected, in the form of the corpus, and the recognizer algorithm, will be released for the use of other researchers. Additionally, if this project helps SignWriting to become even more widespread and easier to use in computational contexts, this might become another powerful tool for the sign language linguistics community.

Therefore, we present this article to the community, with the goal of receiving feedback and comments during the early stages of the project so that it can inform and improve its development and its usefulness for the Computational Linguistics field.