ISCA Tutorial and Research Workshop on Experimental Linguistics (ExLing 2008)

Athens, Greece
August 25-27, 2008

PENS: a Confidence Parameter Estimating the Number of Speakers

Siham Ouamour (1), Mhania Guerti (2), Halim Sayoud (1)

(1) USTHB, Institut d’Electronique, BP 32 Bab Ezzouar, Algeria
(2) Ecole Nationale Polytechnique, Algeria

Is it possible to know how many speakers are speaking simultaneously in case of speech overlap? If the human brain, creation not yet mastered, manages to do it and even to understand the mixed speech meaning, it is not yet the case for the existing automatic systems. For this task, we propose a new method able to estimate the number of speakers in a mixture of speech signals. The algorithm developed here is based on the computation of the statistical characteristic of the 7th Mel coefficient extracted by spectral analysis from the speech signal. This algorithm using a confidence parameter, which we called PENS, is tested on seven different sets of the ORATOR database, which contain seven multi-speaker files each. Results show that PENS parameter permits us to make a good discrimination, without any ambiguity, between a mono-speaker signal (only one speaker is speaking) and a mixed-speakers signal (several speakers are speaking simultaneously). Moreover, it permits us to estimate, in case of mixed speech signals, the number of speakers with a good precision, especially when the number of speakers is less than four.

Full Paper

Bibliographic reference.  Ouamour, Siham / Guerti, Mhania / Sayoud, Halim (2008): "PENS: a confidence parameter estimating the number of speakers", In ExLing-2008, 177-180.