Sentence segmentation and phrase strength estimation in Malay continuous speech

Author(s): Haslizatul Mohamed Hanum and Zainab Abu Bakar


Continuous speech sentences are delivered in several shorter \textbfphrasing segments which can be considered as units of information. The paper proposes a technique to improve intonational speech (IP) segmentation into the normal-strong-normal structure. The segmentation process is carried out in two phases. First, each sentence is segmented into arbitrary segments by evaluating the pause duration. Then, phrase strength is estimated using repeated pitch and intensity patterns on each phrasing segments. Phrase strength defines how strong is the pitch or intensity at that particular phrasing segment compared to the adjoining segment. This technique equates the occurrence of local maximum on pitch and intensity contour with occurrences of phrases from Malay continuous speech sentences. The result of this study suggests that the intensity contour on Malay continuous speech vary systematically with the phrase structure. This finding is useful for identifying the phrase segments that a speaker emphasized in content-based classification and retrieval of speech recordings.