Safira - Related Research - by September 2001

Research Groups

  • Centre for Speech Technology, CTT. The speech communication and technology group is the largest within the department. The group has now expanded to about 35 researchers and research students, a few of them working part-time. The creation of CTT, the Centre for Speech Technology, 1996 opened a new possibility for speech research at the department. The second phase started in July 1998 and was evaluated in the summer 1999 resulting in a continued support of the centre. The organisation of CTT is presented separately.
    The work in the group, including CTT, covers a wide variety of topics, ranging from detailed theoretical development of speech production models through phonetic analyses to practical applications of speech technology.
  • The Geneva Emotion Research Group. The Geneva Emotion Research Group is part of the Faculty of Psychology and Education Sciences (FAPSE) at the University of Geneva. We conduct research into many aspects of emotions, including experimental studies on emotion-antecedent appraisal, emotion induction, physiological reactions and expression of emotion (facial and vocal) and emotional behaviour in autonomous agents.


  • Emotion in Speech Project - University of Reading. Of the many types of suprasegmental and affective information that have been found to occur in speech, relatively few have been coded in such a way as to permit inclusion of them in large-scale machine-readable speech databases. However, as the demand for more natural and unconstrained speech material grows, it becomes increasingly necessary to look at ways of doing this.
    This project brought together expertise in phonetics and phonology and in cognitive psychology in order to examine emotional speech and to produce a database of such speech to put alongside the emotionally neutral material found in most spoken language databases.
  • HAMLET. HAMLET is a system which adds simulated vocal emotion effects into synthetic speech generated by rule. The system runs on a standard PC and controls a DECtalk speech synthesiser (originally the DECtalk hardware version, but the software version DECtalk for Windows NT and Creative Labs' TextAssist are also supported).
    HAMLET works by altering the voice quality of the synthesiser, as well as the pitch contour and speed of the speech; together these effects simulate emotion effects in the voice.
  • MIMIC. The objective of this project is to develop a speaker-adaptive text to speech synthesis with applications to high quality automatic voice dialogue, personalised voice for the disabled, broadcast studio voice processing, interpreted telephony, very low bit rate phonetic speech coding, and multimedia communication.
  • VAESS. The aim of the VAESS project is to develop a fully portable (hand-held) communicator with versatile, high quality speech output. By combining the latest advances in speech technology withstate-of-the-art hardware, the capabilities of current speech prostheses will be extended. A deliberate choice was made to base the communicator around a standard personal computer.
    The potential uses of the portable communicator are then increased to encompass those of any equivalent computer; there are significant benefits from this in the workplace where standard computer applications are needed.

    The VAESS Project is funded by the European Union Technology Initiative for the Disabled and Elderley Programme (TIDE).
  • SUSAS. Speech Under Simulated and Actual Stress. This database was put together by Duke University and Air Force Research Laboratory for researchers who are interested in the characteristics and effects of speech under stress on speech processing recognizers. SUSAS was created at the Robust Speech Processing Laboratory in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at Duke University.

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Contact: Elisabeth André, Patrick Gebhard, © DFKI GmbH, Last modified: Wed Aug 1 10:41:39 CEST 2001