Fast and accurate phonetic spoken term detection

Wallace, Roy Geoffrey (2010) Fast and accurate phonetic spoken term detection. PhD thesis, Queensland University of Technology.


For the first time in human history, large volumes of spoken audio are being broadcast, made available on the internet, archived, and monitored for surveillance every day. New technologies are urgently required to unlock these vast and powerful stores of information. Spoken Term Detection (STD) systems provide access to speech collections by detecting individual occurrences of specified search terms. The aim of this work is to develop improved STD solutions based on phonetic indexing. In particular, this work aims to develop phonetic STD systems for applications that require open-vocabulary search, fast indexing and search speeds, and accurate term detection. Within this scope, novel contributions are made within two research themes, that is, accommodating phone recognition errors and, secondly, modelling uncertainty with probabilistic scores. A state-of-the-art Dynamic Match Lattice Spotting (DMLS) system is used to address the problem of accommodating phone recognition errors with approximate phone sequence matching. Extensive experimentation on the use of DMLS is carried out and a number of novel enhancements are developed that provide for faster indexing, faster search, and improved accuracy. Firstly, a novel comparison of methods for deriving a phone error cost model is presented to improve STD accuracy, resulting in up to a 33% improvement in the Figure of Merit. A method is also presented for drastically increasing the speed of DMLS search by at least an order of magnitude with no loss in search accuracy. An investigation is then presented of the effects of increasing indexing speed for DMLS, by using simpler modelling during phone decoding, with results highlighting the trade-off between indexing speed, search speed and search accuracy. The Figure of Merit is further improved by up to 25% using a novel proposal to utilise word-level language modelling during DMLS indexing. Analysis shows that this use of language modelling can, however, be unhelpful or even disadvantageous for terms with a very low language model probability. The DMLS approach to STD involves generating an index of phone sequences using phone recognition. An alternative approach to phonetic STD is also investigated that instead indexes probabilistic acoustic scores in the form of a posterior-feature matrix. A state-of-the-art system is described and its use for STD is explored through several experiments on spontaneous conversational telephone speech. A novel technique and framework is proposed for discriminatively training such a system to directly maximise the Figure of Merit. This results in a 13% improvement in the Figure of Merit on held-out data. The framework is also found to be particularly useful for index compression in conjunction with the proposed optimisation technique, providing for a substantial index compression factor in addition to an overall gain in the Figure of Merit. These contributions significantly advance the state-of-the-art in phonetic STD, by improving the utility of such systems in a wide range of applications.

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ID Code: 39610
Item Type: QUT Thesis (PhD)
Supervisor: Sridharan, Subramanian, Baker, Brendan, & Vogt, Robert
Keywords: spoken term detection, keyword spotting, audio indexing, information retrieval, data mining, speech processing, speech recognition, language modelling, discriminative training, Figure of Merit, nonlinear optimisation
Divisions: Past > QUT Faculties & Divisions > Faculty of Built Environment and Engineering
Institution: Queensland University of Technology
Deposited On: 21 Jan 2011 01:54
Last Modified: 23 Jun 2017 14:42

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