Third ESCA/COCOSDA Workshop on Speech Synthesis

November 26-29, 1998
Jenolan Caves House, Blue Mountains, NSW, Australia

Improving Pronunciation by Analogy for Text-to-Speech Applications

Robert I. Damper, Y. Marchand

Department of Electronics and Computer Science, University of Southampton, UK

This paper extends previous work on pronunciation by analogy (PbA) in several directions. PbA is a data-driven method for converting letters to sound, with potential application to next-generation text-to-speech systems. We experiment with a range of methods for matching letter patterns in input words to those in the system dictionary when building a pronunciation lattice. We give prelimin- ary consideration to deriving lexical stress for input words. Common errors are analysed: these mostly involve vowel letters and phonemes. An output is not necessarily guaranteed in PbA { the so-called silence problem. We report on a simple but effective strategy for silence avoidance. Finally, we introduce the idea of using different strategies in combination to improve performance.

Full Paper

Bibliographic reference.  Damper, Robert I. / Marchand, Y. (1998): "Improving Pronunciation by Analogy for Text-to-Speech Applications", In SSW3-1998, 65-70.