Jason M. Brenier

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In a regression study of conversational speech, we show that frequency, contextual predictability, and repetition have separate contributions to word duration, despite their substantial correlations. We also found that contentand function-word durations are affected differently by their frequency and predictability. Content words are shorter when more(More)
This paper describes a recently completed common resource for the study of spoken discourse, the NXT-format Switchboard Corpus. Switchboard is a long-standing corpus of telephone conversations (Godfrey et al., 1992). We have brought together transcriptions with existing annotations for syntax, disfluency, speech acts, animacy, information status,(More)
To date, studies of deceptive speech have largely been confined to descriptive studies and observations from subjects, researchers, or practitioners, with few empirical studies of the specific lexical or acoustic/prosodic features which may characterize deceptive speech. We present results from a study seeking to distinguish deceptive from non-deceptive(More)
We present a framework for the integrated analysis of the textual and prosodic characteristics of information structure in the Switchboard corpus of conversational English. Information structure describes the availability, organisation and salience of entities in a discourse model. We present standards for the annotation of information status (old, mediated(More)
The immense prosodic variation of natural conversational speech makes it challenging to predict which words are prosodically prominent in this genre. In this paper, we examine a new feature, accent ratio, which captures how likely it is that a word will be realized as prominent or not. We compare this feature with traditional accent-prediction features(More)
The pronunciation of a word can vary widely, and many factors are known to affect this variation. This paper focuses on the role of predictability on word duration. Previous research has suggested that more frequent words are shorter, as are words which are more predictable from neighboring words. This research has tended to focus only on extremely high(More)
In this study, we describe an automatic detector for prosodically salient or emphasized words in speech. Knowledge of whether a word is emphatic or not could improve Text-to-Speech synthesis as well as spoken language summarization. Previous work on emphasis detection has focused on the automatic recognition of pitch accents. Our model extends earlier(More)
To build a robust pitch accent prediction system, we need to understand the effects of speech genre and speaker variation. This paper reports our studies on genre and speaker variation in pitch accent placement and their effects on automatic pitch accent prediction. We find some interesting accentuation pattern differences that can be attributed to speech(More)
This paper investigates the prosodic characteristics of reported speech in the Switchboard corpus. We find that directly reported speech is signalled by a greater overall pitch range than the surrounding narrative material and is typically preceded by intonational phrase boundaries. By contrast, prosody does not seem to distinguish indirectly reported(More)
Conversational speech is characterized by prosodic variability which makes pitch accent prediction for this genre especially difficult. The linguistic literature points out that complex features such as information status, contrast and animacy help predict pitch accent placement. In this paper, we use a corpus annotated for such features to determine if(More)