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J Acoust Soc Am. 2011 Jun;129(6):4014-22. doi: 10.1121/1.3573987.

Processing speech signal using auditory-like filterbank provides least uncertainty about articulatory gestures.

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Signal Analysis and Interpretation Laboratory, Department of Electrical Engineering, University of Southern California, Los Angeles, California 90089, USA.


Understanding how the human speech production system is related to the human auditory system has been a perennial subject of inquiry. To investigate the production-perception link, in this paper, a computational analysis has been performed using the articulatory movement data obtained during speech production with concurrently recorded acoustic speech signals from multiple subjects in three different languages: English, Cantonese, and Georgian. The form of articulatory gestures during speech production varies across languages, and this variation is considered to be reflected in the articulatory position and kinematics. The auditory processing of the acoustic speech signal is modeled by a parametric representation of the cochlear filterbank which allows for realizing various candidate filterbank structures by changing the parameter value. Using mathematical communication theory, it is found that the uncertainty about the articulatory gestures in each language is maximally reduced when the acoustic speech signal is represented using the output of a filterbank similar to the empirically established cochlear filterbank in the human auditory system. Possible interpretations of this finding are discussed.

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