Point source tracking of the speech articulators will be collected concurrently with the corresponding acoustics. Speakers will record speech at both a normal and rapid pace (the purpose of the latter is to increase significantly the degree of variability in the signal). This data will allow for the investigation of whether speakers always move their speech articulators in the direction of a desired target (e.g. tongue tip to teeth in producing /t/) even when a rapid production pace occludes the relevant acoustic information (as in "perfect"). If confirmed, this finding will point the way towards making recognition systems more robust through the incorporation of articulatory information. In addition, such data will support the development of a speech inversion system capable of 'uncovering' hidden articulatory movements potentially masked from the acoustics.
Effects of production variability on the acoustic consequences of coordinated articulatory gestures is a two-year, $132K grant.