Computer learns baby talk, won't require a college fund

In an attempt to better understand the way in which human babies learn to speak, researchers at Stanford University say they have created a computer program which can learn baby talk. The largely accepted theory about human language is that all of the sounds we make are hard-wired into our brains, but now that James McClelland -- a professor at the Palo Alto college -- has tested his theory, it would appear that those notions have been debunked. During "training sessions" in both English and Japanese, a computer followed along to recordings of mothers speaking to their children, and was able to pick up the basic vowel sounds as the baby did. "It learns how many sounds there are. It figures that out," the professor said, he then laughed maniacally and continued, "and once it has learned to speak, it will be trained to sing the most beautiful operas ever written."