Crazy Talk gives voice to pictures

Crazy Talk gives voice to pictures

In the middle of an expo show floor where people touted software, services, accessories and more for Apple gadgets and those who love them, there was an animated cat talking back.

Actually, it was repeating whatever anyone said.

"You could take a photo of a car, a baby, a cat, a politician, whatever you want, and bring it to life with your voice or a recorded voice," John Martin of Reallusion said as he demonstrated the firm's Crazy Talk application.

Crazy Talk manipulates points on faces in images to make it appear as though the person or character in a picture is speaking with the words provided by the puppeteer.

The software, tailored for Macintosh computers, has been put to work on popular US television programs Jimmy Kimmel Live and The Jon Stewart Show, according to its creators.

Kimmel's studio used Crazy Talk to power a comedy sketch of Osama Bin Laden speaking from hell, Martin said.

The application is also used to make language learning more fun in some Silicon Valley grade schools, according to Reallusion, which has its headquarters in the California city of San Jose.

Crazy Talk jumped onto the "best of 2012" list at the Mac App Store after being made available there in November at a price of $30.

Versions of the software designed for use on iPhones or iPads will be released later this year, according to Martin.