[PLUG-TALK] Linguistics anyone?

John Jason Jordan johnxj at gmx.com
Wed May 27 12:44:09 PDT 2020


A topic that you might find interesting is spectrograms. A spectrogram
is a graphical representation of a bit of speech. Here is an example
(labeled image24.png):


Linguists have created spectrograms from audio files for decades.
Lately I believe that some work has been done on converting a
spectrogram to text, although spectrogram players are more advanced.

I have created spectrograms with Audacity, although most linguists
stick with Praat (= 'speech' in Dutch). When you look at a spectrogram
you will note that there are multiple bands, each of which represents a
frequency. For example, when we produce a vowel we produce three
frequencies (called formants), and when we hear a vowel sound our
brains interpret the frequencies as belonging to one vowel sound.

I recall a number of years ago taking graduate level phonetics where,
toward the end of the course, the professor gave us six spectrograms,
each of a short English sentence. Our job was to figure out what each
sentence was. I got four of the six, and a few sounds from each of the
other two. My score was 68, which turned out to be the high score in
the class. Figuring out spectrograms is not easy! Good luck getting a
computer to recognize a spectrogram!

I also put my linguistics pdf file up on box.

On Tue, 26 May 2020 20:01:58 -0700
Tomas Kuchta <tomas.kuchta.lists at gmail.com> dijo:

>The only thing I know about linguistic is that I do not know anything
>about it.
>That being said, being able to rationalize what parts of language carry
>information, what kind of information and what is redundant filler,
>possibly used for error correction - is currently extremely active
>area of computer science.
>Reasonably modern algorithms for text comprehension throw out the
>filler stuff, convert text or speech to vectors and attempt to
>understand it.
>If what you do has something to say about that, it might be interesting
>topic for people interested in CS.
>Language design is also very interesting and still active area of CS.
>Sadly, not many languages are designed to not be ambiguous and  highly
>Just a thought,
>On Tue, May 26, 2020, 19:20 John Jason Jordan <johnxj at gmx.com> wrote:
>> On Tue, 26 May 2020 11:59:25 -0700
>> Denis Heidtmann <denis.heidtmann at gmail.com> dijo:
>> >I think your idea and efforts are wonderful.  It would be great to
>> >see/hear your linguistics tutorial in whatever form works best for
>> >you.  Rich's suggestions seem to expand your idea to the next
>> >level, a great idea too. Maybe you could use Plug as a tuning
>> >ground for the YouTube release, if you still have the energy for
>> >it.  But whatever you come up with I am sure it will be well
>> >received and appreciated.
>> I do enjoy giving talks, but I just don't know much about the
>> technical parts of computer science. Worse, such things don't really
>> interest me; I'm just a user.
>> I did some reformatting on my document to increase legibility and
>> saved it as a PDF. I'd be happy to send it to you or anyone else who
>> would like a copy.
>> I considered Rich's suggestions, but they don't interest me. The last
>> thing I want to do is create something for Youtube - a platform
>> which I find mostly annoying. Nowadays people put their 'how-to'
>> information on Youtube, and I find it impossible to figure out what
>> they are talking about. Why couldn't they just write it down? Oh
>> wait ... maybe they don't know how to write. Anyway, I don't want to
>> be part of that crowd.
>> As for powerpoints, I find them almost as irritating as Youtube. I
>> don't want to convert my work into a list of bullet points with no
>> data or details.
>> The more I think about the way a lot of people expect to receive
>> information the more I think I ought to just make the PDF available
>> to those who want it, and forget about presentations.
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