Speaker-Independent Speech-Driven Visual Speech Synthesis using Domain-Adapted Acoustic Models

arXiv.org Machine Learning

Speech-driven visual speech synthesis involves mapping features extracted from acoustic speech to the corresponding lip animation controls for a face model. This mapping can take many forms, but a powerful approach is to use deep neural networks (DNNs). However, a limitation is the lack of synchronized audio, video, and depth data required to reliably train the DNNs, especially for speaker-independent models. In this paper, we investigate adapting an automatic speech recognition (ASR) acoustic model (AM) for the visual speech synthesis problem. We train the AM on ten thousand hours of audio-only data. The AM is then adapted to the visual speech synthesis domain using ninety hours of synchronized audio-visual speech. Using a subjective assessment test, we compared the performance of the AM-initialized DNN to one with a random initialization. The results show that viewers significantly prefer animations generated from the AM-initialized DNN than the ones generated using the randomly initialized model. We conclude that visual speech synthesis can significantly benefit from the powerful representation of speech in the ASR acoustic models.

Barking up the Right Tree: Improving Cross-Corpus Speech Emotion Recognition with Adversarial Discriminative Domain Generalization (ADDoG)

arXiv.org Machine Learning

Automatic speech emotion recognition provides computers with critical context to enable user understanding. While methods trained and tested within the same dataset have been shown successful, they often fail when applied to unseen datasets. To address this, recent work has focused on adversarial methods to find more generalized representations of emotional speech. However, many of these methods have issues converging, and only involve datasets collected in laboratory conditions. In this paper, we introduce Adversarial Discriminative Domain Generalization (ADDoG), which follows an easier to train "meet in the middle" approach. The model iteratively moves representations learned for each dataset closer to one another, improving cross-dataset generalization. We also introduce Multiclass ADDoG, or MADDoG, which is able to extend the proposed method to more than two datasets, simultaneously. Our results show consistent convergence for the introduced methods, with significantly improved results when not using labels from the target dataset. We also show how, in most cases, ADDoG and MADDoG can be used to improve upon baseline state-of-the-art methods when target dataset labels are added and in-the-wild data are considered. Even though our experiments focus on cross-corpus speech emotion, these methods could be used to remove unwanted factors of variation in other settings.

An Alternative to Low-level-Sychrony-Based Methods for Speech Detection

Neural Information Processing Systems

Determining whether someone is talking has applications in many areas such as speech recognition, speaker diarization, social robotics, facial expression recognition, andhuman computer interaction. One popular approach to this problem is audiovisual synchrony detection [10, 21, 12]. A candidate speaker is deemed to be talking if the visual signal around that speaker correlates with the auditory signal. Here we show that with the proper visual features (in this case movements of various facial muscle groups), a very accurate detector of speech can be created thatdoes not use the audio signal at all. Further we show that this person independent visual-only detector can be used to train very accurate audio-based person dependent voice models. The voice model has the advantage of being able to identify when a particular person is speaking even when they are not visible to the camera (e.g. in the case of a mobile robot). Moreover, we show that a simple sensory fusion scheme between the auditory and visual models improves performance onthe task of talking detection. The work here provides dramatic evidence about the efficacy of two very different approaches to multimodal speech detection on a challenging database.

Classifying Facial Action

Neural Information Processing Systems

Measurement of facial expressions is important for research and assessment psychiatry, neurology,and experimental psychology (Ekman, Huang, Sejnowski, & Hager, 1992), and has technological applications in consumer-friendly user interfaces, interactive videoand entertainment rating. The Facial Action Coding System (FACS) is a method for measuring facial expressions in terms of activity in the underlying facial muscles (Ekman & Friesen, 1978). We are exploring ways to automate FACS.



The first step to before being able to do Image or audio analyses would be to extract relevant frames from the video streams in real time. This is crucial to a smart interactive device and requires extensive down sizing of the data to run the models on the features identified most relevant. One also needs the device to identify and react to certain events (owner coming home, break-in etc) through a frame by frame comparative analysis. Let us start with the event that there is a disturbance and the image frames and audio data is fed into the trained model to classify the event into pre-defined classes (simplest cast being intrusion vs non intrusion). Given a frame, let us start with the features that we would extract from it to first look for faces within the scenario and then if we find one, to match it with the available "registered" face repository.