WorldWideScience

Sample records for metropolitan italian speakers

  1. Metropolitan City: the Italian experience

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Giuseppe Franco Ferrari

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available Due to the fact that the definitions of territorial organization are no longer adequate, the concept of “metropolitan areas” arises as a solution to resolve such deficit. This study shows the beginnings of this figure in Italy and the problems of identification and delimitation caused by the abstraction of the norms, therefore entailing a difficult implementation of the concept of metropolitan cities. By identifying these obstacles, this paper presents an analysis where it is possible to ensure compliance with this new reality in the near future.

  2. Planning Assignments of the Italian Metropolitan Cities. Early Trends

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Giuseppe Mazzeo

    2017-04-01

    Full Text Available The last stage of the process of establishment of the Italian Metropolitan Cities, which took place in 2014, follows of a few decades the start of this institutional reform. In 1990, in fact, the Act 142 (Local Autonomies Reform had planned metropolitan areas as the administrative organization more suitable to provide these territories of structures for the management and the strategic development alike the best international models. The paper proposes to analyse the first activities taken by the Italian Metropolitan Cities in the sector of territorial government, three years after the enactment in 2014 of Act nr. 56.  Focal point of the analysis is the jurisdiction in the formation of two plans (the Strategic Plan and the Metropolitan Territorial Plan and the following relationships among them, in the logical assumption that between them a necessary and strict consistency there should be. In the first part, the paper analyses some factors characterizing the metropolitan areas and the functions that the law assigns to the new institution in the territorial government sector. The second part outlines the updated situation with regard to the formation of the sectoral tools (Strategic Plan, Territorial Plan and homogeneous zones. The third part analyses the progresses in three Metropolitan Cities taken as sample (Milan, Genoa and Bologna and, in general, to those of Southern Italy. In the last part, the paper exposes some considerations regarding the issues raised in the article, particularly about the innovativeness of the tools and the timeline for the implementation of the act.

  3. Teaching Standard Italian to Dialect Speakers: A Pedagogical Perspective of Linguistic Systems in Contact

    Science.gov (United States)

    Danesi, Marcel

    1974-01-01

    The teaching of standard Italian to speakers of Italian dialects both in Italy and in North America is discussed, specifically through a specialized pedagogical program within the framework of a sociolinguistic and psycholinguistic perspective, and based on a structural analysis of linguistic systems in contact. Italian programs in Toronto are…

  4. Linguistic and Cognitive Effects of Bilingualism with Regional Minority Languages: A Study of Sardinian–Italian Adult Speakers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garraffa, Maria; Obregon, Mateo; Sorace, Antonella

    2017-01-01

    This study explores the effects of bilingualism in Sardinian as a regional minority language on the linguistic competence in Italian as the dominant language and on non-linguistic cognitive abilities. Sardinian/Italian adult speakers and monolingual Italian speakers living in the same geographical area of Sardinia were compared in two kinds of tasks: (a) verbal and non-verbal cognitive tasks targeting working memory and attentional control and (b) tasks of linguistic abilities in Italian focused on the comprehension of sentences differing in grammatical complexity. Although no difference was found between bilinguals and monolinguals in the cognitive control of attention, bilinguals performed better on working memory tasks. Bilinguals with lower formal education were found to be faster at comprehension of one type of complex sentence (center embedded object relative clauses). In contrast, bilinguals and monolinguals with higher education showed comparable slower processing of complex sentences. These results show that the effects of bilingualism are modulated by type of language experience and education background: positive effects of active bilingualism on the dominant language are visible in bilinguals with lower education, whereas the effects of higher literacy in Italian obliterate those of active bilingualism in bilinguals and monolinguals with higher education. PMID:29163288

  5. Dynamics of Metropolitan Landscapes and Daily Mobility Flows in the Italian Context. An Analysis Based on the Theory of Graphs

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Amedeo Ganciu

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available The distribution of services across a territory generates daily commuting flows, which have a significant influence on the development of the territory and often causes congestion in large areas. This negatively affects the environmental, economic and social components of the metropolitan landscape. Using the graph theory, we constructed and analyzed various (in typologies of transportation and moving time flow networks in the two main Italian metropolitan areas: Rome (MCR and Milan (MCM. The analysis of these networks provided us with strategic information on the dynamics of the two urban macro-systems. In particular, the aim of our study was to: (i identify the characteristics, distribution and direction of the main attractive forces within the regional systems under study; (ii identify the main differences in size and structure of commuter networks between the two metropolitan areas and between the two regional systems that include the two mother cities; and, (iii identify the main differences in the size and structure of the two commuting networks by transport modes (private, public, non-motorized mobility and the travel time. The results highlighted significant differences between the two case studies regarding volume flows, complexity and structure networks, and the spatial extension of the territories that are governed by the two metropolitan areas. MCR is a strongly monocentric urban system with a regional influence centred on the mother city of Rome, while MCM is a diffused polycentric regional metropolitan system centred on multiple mother cities. The findings many have a role in urban planning choices and in the evaluation of policies aimed to favor sustainable mobility.

  6. Cohort profile: the Italian Network of Longitudinal Metropolitan Studies (IN-LiMeS), a multicentre cohort for socioeconomic inequalities in health monitoring.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Caranci, Nicola; Di Girolamo, Chiara; Giorgi Rossi, Paolo; Spadea, Teresa; Pacelli, Barbara; Broccoli, Serena; Ballotari, Paola; Costa, Giuseppe; Zengarini, Nicolás; Agabiti, Nera; Bargagli, Anna Maria; Cacciani, Laura; Canova, Cristina; Cestari, Laura; Biggeri, Annibale; Grisotto, Laura; Terni, Gianna; Costanzo, Gianfranco; Mirisola, Concetta; Petrelli, Alessio

    2018-04-20

    The Italian Network of Longitudinal Metropolitan Studies (IN-LiMeS) is a system of integrated data on health outcomes, demographic and socioeconomic information, and represents a powerful tool to study health inequalities. IN-LiMeS is a multicentre and multipurpose pool of metropolitan population cohorts enrolled in nine Italian cities: Turin, Venice, Reggio Emilia, Modena, Bologna, Florence, Leghorn, Prato and Rome. Data come from record linkage of municipal population registries, the 2001 population census, mortality registers and hospital discharge archives. Depending on the source of enrolment, cohorts can be closed or open. The census-based closed cohort design includes subjects resident in any of the nine cities at the 2001 census day; 4 466 655 individuals were enrolled in 2001 in the nine closed cohorts. The open cohort design includes subjects resident in 2001 or subsequently registered by birth or immigration until the latest available follow-up (currently 31 December 2013). The open cohort design is available for Turin, Venice, Reggio Emilia, Modena, Bologna, Prato and Rome. Detailed socioeconomic data are available for subjects enrolled in the census-based cohorts; information on demographic characteristics, education and citizenship is available from population registries. The first IN-LiMeS application was the study of differentials in mortality between immigrants and Italians. Either using a closed cohort design (nine cities) or an open one (Turin and Reggio Emilia), individuals from high migration pressure countries generally showed a lower mortality risk. However, a certain heterogeneity between the nine cities was noted, especially among men, and an excess mortality risk was reported for some macroareas of origin and specific causes of death. We are currently working on the linkage of the 2011 population census data, the expansion of geographical coverage and the implementation of the open design in all the participating cohorts. © Article author

  7. Prosodic Transfer in Learner and Contact Varieties: Speech Rhythm and Intonation of Buenos Aires Spanish and L2 Castilian Spanish Produced by Italian Native Speakers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gabriel, Christoph; Kireva, Elena

    2014-01-01

    A remarkable example of Spanish-Italian contact is the Spanish variety spoken in Buenos Aires (Porteño), which is said to be prosodically "Italianized" due to migration-induced contact. The change in Porteño prosody has been interpreted as a result of transfer from the first language (L1) that occurred when Italian immigrants learned…

  8. Speaker Recognition

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Mølgaard, Lasse Lohilahti; Jørgensen, Kasper Winther

    2005-01-01

    Speaker recognition is basically divided into speaker identification and speaker verification. Verification is the task of automatically determining if a person really is the person he or she claims to be. This technology can be used as a biometric feature for verifying the identity of a person...

  9. Speaker Authentication

    CERN Document Server

    Li, Qi (Peter)

    2012-01-01

    This book focuses on use of voice as a biometric measure for personal authentication. In particular, "Speaker Recognition" covers two approaches in speaker authentication: speaker verification (SV) and verbal information verification (VIV). The SV approach attempts to verify a speaker’s identity based on his/her voice characteristics while the VIV approach validates a speaker’s identity through verification of the content of his/her utterance(s). SV and VIV can be combined for new applications. This is still a new research topic with significant potential applications. The book provides with a broad overview of the recent advances in speaker authentication while giving enough attention to advanced and useful algorithms and techniques. It also provides a step by step introduction to the current state of the speaker authentication technology, from the fundamental concepts to advanced algorithms. We will also present major design methodologies and share our experience in developing real and successful speake...

  10. Extending research on the influence of grammatical gender on object classification: A cross-linguistic study comparing Estonian, Italian and Lithuanian native speakers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Luca Vernich

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available Using different experimental tasks, researchers have pointed to a possible correlation between grammatical gender and classification behaviour. Such effects, however, have been found comparing speakers of a relatively small set of languages. Therefore, it’s not clear whether evidence gathered can be generalized and extended to languages that are typologically different from those studied so far. To the best of our knowledge, Baltic and Finno-Ugric languages have never been examined in this respect. While most previous studies have used English as an example of gender-free languages, we chose Estonian because – contrary to English and like all Finno-Ugric languages – it does not use gendered pronouns (‘he’ vs. ‘she’ and is therefore more suitable as a baseline. We chose Lithuanian because the gender system of Baltic languages is interestingly different from the system of Romance and German languages tested so far. Taken together, our results support and extend previous findings and suggest that they are not restricted to a small group of languages. "Grammatiline sugu objektide kategoriseerimise mõjutajana: eesti, itaalia ja leedu keele võrdlev uurimus" Eri tüüpi eksperimente kasutades on uurijad osutanud grammatilise soo ja objektide klassifitseerimise võimalikele seostele. Senised tulemused on saadud siiski suhteliselt väheste keelte andmete võrdlemisel. Seetõttu ei ole teada, kas need järeldused on üldistatavad ka nendele keeltele, mille struktuur erineb siiani uuritud keeltest. Probleemi uurimiseks laiendasime vaadeldavate keelte hulka ja tegime grammatilise soo ja objektide kategoriseerimise seoste katse läbi balti ja soome-ugri keelte hulka kuuvate keeltega, mida ei ole kõnealusest vaatenurgast uuritud. Enamik seniseid uuringuid on seadnud nn lähtepunktiks ehk grammatilise soota keeleks inglise keele. Siinses uuringus valisime aga selliseks lähtepunktiks hoopis eesti keele, kus erinevalt inglise keelest ei ole ka

  11. Speaker segmentation and clustering

    OpenAIRE

    Kotti, M; Moschou, V; Kotropoulos, C

    2008-01-01

    07.08.13 KB. Ok to add the accepted version to Spiral, Elsevier says ok whlile mandate not enforced. This survey focuses on two challenging speech processing topics, namely: speaker segmentation and speaker clustering. Speaker segmentation aims at finding speaker change points in an audio stream, whereas speaker clustering aims at grouping speech segments based on speaker characteristics. Model-based, metric-based, and hybrid speaker segmentation algorithms are reviewed. Concerning speaker...

  12. 19th July 2010 - Italian Senators and Deputies on the occasion of the Third World Conference of Speakers of Parliament, visiting CMS control room with CERN Director-General R. Heuer.

    CERN Document Server

    Jean-Claude Gadmer

    2010-01-01

    CERN-HI-1007208 01: In the CMS surafce building 3578, from left to right: ALICE Collaboration Spokesperson elect P. Giubellino, Guest Professor and Former Italian Senator G. Basini, Technology Deputy Department Head L. Rossi, Vice President House R. Buttiglione, Vice President of the Italian Senate V. Chiti,Engineering Department Head R. Saban, Permanent Representative of Italy to the UN Ambassador L. Mirachian, CMS Collaboration Spokesperson G. Tonelli, Director for Research and Computing S. Bertolucci.

  13. Working with Speakers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pestel, Ann

    1989-01-01

    The author discusses working with speakers from business and industry to present career information at the secondary level. Advice for speakers is presented, as well as tips for program coordinators. (CH)

  14. Forensic speaker recognition

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Meuwly, Didier

    2013-01-01

    The aim of forensic speaker recognition is to establish links between individuals and criminal activities, through audio speech recordings. This field is multidisciplinary, combining predominantly phonetics, linguistics, speech signal processing, and forensic statistics. On these bases, expert-based

  15. Multimodal Speaker Diarization

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Noulas, A.; Englebienne, G.; Kröse, B.J.A.

    2012-01-01

    We present a novel probabilistic framework that fuses information coming from the audio and video modality to perform speaker diarization. The proposed framework is a Dynamic Bayesian Network (DBN) that is an extension of a factorial Hidden Markov Model (fHMM) and models the people appearing in an

  16. Multimodal Speaker Diarization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Noulas, A; Englebienne, G; Krose, B J A

    2012-01-01

    We present a novel probabilistic framework that fuses information coming from the audio and video modality to perform speaker diarization. The proposed framework is a Dynamic Bayesian Network (DBN) that is an extension of a factorial Hidden Markov Model (fHMM) and models the people appearing in an audiovisual recording as multimodal entities that generate observations in the audio stream, the video stream, and the joint audiovisual space. The framework is very robust to different contexts, makes no assumptions about the location of the recording equipment, and does not require labeled training data as it acquires the model parameters using the Expectation Maximization (EM) algorithm. We apply the proposed model to two meeting videos and a news broadcast video, all of which come from publicly available data sets. The results acquired in speaker diarization are in favor of the proposed multimodal framework, which outperforms the single modality analysis results and improves over the state-of-the-art audio-based speaker diarization.

  17. The Sound of Voice: Voice-Based Categorization of Speakers' Sexual Orientation within and across Languages.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Simone Sulpizio

    Full Text Available Empirical research had initially shown that English listeners are able to identify the speakers' sexual orientation based on voice cues alone. However, the accuracy of this voice-based categorization, as well as its generalizability to other languages (language-dependency and to non-native speakers (language-specificity, has been questioned recently. Consequently, we address these open issues in 5 experiments: First, we tested whether Italian and German listeners are able to correctly identify sexual orientation of same-language male speakers. Then, participants of both nationalities listened to voice samples and rated the sexual orientation of both Italian and German male speakers. We found that listeners were unable to identify the speakers' sexual orientation correctly. However, speakers were consistently categorized as either heterosexual or gay on the basis of how they sounded. Moreover, a similar pattern of results emerged when listeners judged the sexual orientation of speakers of their own and of the foreign language. Overall, this research suggests that voice-based categorization of sexual orientation reflects the listeners' expectations of how gay voices sound rather than being an accurate detector of the speakers' actual sexual identity. Results are discussed with regard to accuracy, acoustic features of voices, language dependency and language specificity.

  18. Italian Modernities

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Thomassen, Bjørn; Forlenza, Rosario

    assumptions that have substituted for thought and that have perpetuated prejudices both within and outside Italy’s borders. Grounded in meticulous historical and ethnological research, Italian Modernities deserves as wide an audience as its scholarship is deep.” (Michael Herzfeld, Ernest E. Monrad Professor...

  19. The speaker's formant.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bele, Irene Velsvik

    2006-12-01

    The current study concerns speaking voice quality in two groups of professional voice users, teachers (n = 35) and actors (n = 36), representing trained and untrained voices. The voice quality of text reading at two intensity levels was acoustically analyzed. The central concept was the speaker's formant (SPF), related to the perceptual characteristics "better normal voice quality" (BNQ) and "worse normal voice quality" (WNQ). The purpose of the current study was to get closer to the origin of the phenomenon of the SPF, and to discover the differences in spectral and formant characteristics between the two professional groups and the two voice quality groups. The acoustic analyses were long-term average spectrum (LTAS) and spectrographical measurements of formant frequencies. At very high intensities, the spectral slope was rather quandrangular without a clear SPF peak. The trained voices had a higher energy level in the SPF region compared with the untrained, significantly so in loud phonation. The SPF seemed to be related to both sufficiently strong overtones and a glottal setting, allowing for a lowering of F4 and a closeness of F3 and F4. However, the existence of SPF also in LTAS of the WNQ voices implies that more research is warranted concerning the formation of SPF, and concerning the acoustic correlates of the BNQ voices.

  20. Arctic Visiting Speakers Series (AVS)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fox, S. E.; Griswold, J.

    2011-12-01

    The Arctic Visiting Speakers (AVS) Series funds researchers and other arctic experts to travel and share their knowledge in communities where they might not otherwise connect. Speakers cover a wide range of arctic research topics and can address a variety of audiences including K-12 students, graduate and undergraduate students, and the general public. Host applications are accepted on an on-going basis, depending on funding availability. Applications need to be submitted at least 1 month prior to the expected tour dates. Interested hosts can choose speakers from an online Speakers Bureau or invite a speaker of their choice. Preference is given to individuals and organizations to host speakers that reach a broad audience and the general public. AVS tours are encouraged to span several days, allowing ample time for interactions with faculty, students, local media, and community members. Applications for both domestic and international visits will be considered. Applications for international visits should involve participation of more than one host organization and must include either a US-based speaker or a US-based organization. This is a small but important program that educates the public about Arctic issues. There have been 27 tours since 2007 that have impacted communities across the globe including: Gatineau, Quebec Canada; St. Petersburg, Russia; Piscataway, New Jersey; Cordova, Alaska; Nuuk, Greenland; Elizabethtown, Pennsylvania; Oslo, Norway; Inari, Finland; Borgarnes, Iceland; San Francisco, California and Wolcott, Vermont to name a few. Tours have included lectures to K-12 schools, college and university students, tribal organizations, Boy Scout troops, science center and museum patrons, and the general public. There are approximately 300 attendees enjoying each AVS tour, roughly 4100 people have been reached since 2007. The expectations for each tour are extremely manageable. Hosts must submit a schedule of events and a tour summary to be posted online

  1. Modeling Metropolitan Detroit transit.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-10-01

    "The seven-county Southeast Michigan region, that encompasses the Detroit Metropolitan Area, : ranks fifth in population among top 25 regions in the nation. It also ranks among bottom five in : the transit service provided, measured in miles or hours...

  2. Metropolitan water management

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Milliken, J. Gordon; Taylor, Graham C

    1981-01-01

    This monograph is intended to inform interested and capable pesons, who happen not to be specialists in water resources planning, of the issues and alternative strategies related to metropolitan water supply...

  3. Managing Discourse in Intercultural Business Email Interactions: A Case Study of a British and Italian Business Transaction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Incelli, Ersilia

    2013-01-01

    This paper investigates native speaker (NS) and non-native speaker (NNS) interaction in the workplace in computer-mediated communication (CMC). Based on empirical data from a 10-month email exchange between a medium-sized British company and a small-sized Italian company, the general aim of this study is to explore the nature of the intercultural…

  4. Efficient Metropolitan Resource Allocation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Richard Arnott

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available Over the past 30 years Calgary has doubled in size, from a population of 640,645 in 1985 to 1,230,915 in 2015. During that time the City has had five different mayors, hosted the Winter Olympics, and expanded the C-Train from 25 platforms to 45. Calgary’s Metropolitan Area has grown too, with Airdrie, Chestermere, Okotoks and Cochrane growing into full-fledged cities, ripe with inter-urban commuters.* And with changes to provincial legislation in the mid-’90s, rural Rocky View County and the Municipal District of Foothills are now real competitors for residential, commercial and industrial development that in the past would have been considered urban. In this metropolitan system, where people live, their household structure, and their place of work informs the services they need to conduct their daily lives, and directly impacts the spatial character of the City and the broader region. In sum, Metropolitan Calgary is increasingly complex. Calgary and the broader metropolitan area will continue to grow, even with the current economic slowdown. Frictions within Calgary, between the various municipalities in the metropolitan area, and the priorities of other local authorities (such as the School Boards and Alberta Health Services will continue to impact the agendas of local politicians and their ability to answer to the needs of their residents. How resources – whether it is hard infrastructure, affordable housing, classrooms, or hospital beds – are allocated over space and how these resources are funded, directly impacts these relationships. This technical paper provides my perspective as an urban economist on the efficient allocation of resources within a metropolitan system in general, with reference to Calgary where appropriate, and serves as a companion to the previously released “Reflections on Calgary’s Spatial Structure: An Urban Economists Critique of Municipal Planning in Calgary.” It is hoped that the concepts reviewed

  5. Bilinguisme et problematique des langues ethniques. Enquete sur le comportement linguistique des jeunes montrealais d'origine italienne (Bilingualism and the Problem of Ethnic Languages. A Study of the Linguistic Behavior of Young Montrealers of Italian Descent). Publication B-149.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Villata, Bruno

    A study is reported of the language behavior of trilingual 9-to-12-year-old native Italian speakers in Montreal, some of whom were studying Italian on Saturdays and some of whom were not. The study focused on their available vocabulary in the three languages (Italian, French, and English) and on their language productivity during their various…

  6. Ensuring an Italian Renaissance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hallock, Ann H.

    1978-01-01

    Factors contributing to the renaissance of Italian and the goals of students who study the language are discussed. Alternatives to rote learning in the classroom and ways to generate interest in Italian in the community are suggested. (SW)

  7. MPLS for metropolitan area networks

    CERN Document Server

    Tan, Nam-Kee

    2004-01-01

    METROPOLITAN AREA NETWORKS AND MPLSRequirements of Metropolitan Area Network ServicesMetropolitan Area Network OverviewThe Bandwidth DemandThe Metro Service Provider's Business ApproachesThe Emerging Metro Customer Expectations and NeedsSome Prevailing Metro Service OpportunitiesService Aspects and RequirementsRoles of MPLS in Metropolitan Area NetworksMPLS PrimerMPLS ApplicationsTRAFFIC ENGINEERING ASPECTS OF METROPOLITAN AREA NETWORKSTraffic Engineering ConceptsNetwork CongestionHyper Aggregation ProblemEasing CongestionNetwork ControlTactical versus Strategic Traffic EngineeringIP/ATM Overl

  8. Italian: Area Background Information.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Defense Language Inst., Washington, DC.

    This booklet has been assembled in order to provide students of Italian with a compact source of cultural information on their target area. Chapters include discussion of: (1) introduction to Italian; (2) origins of the Italian population; (3) geography; (4) history including the Roman Era, the Middle Ages, the Renaissance, the "Risorgimento," and…

  9. The 2016 NIST Speaker Recognition Evaluation

    Science.gov (United States)

    2017-08-20

    impact on system performance. Index Terms: NIST evaluation, NIST SRE, speaker detection, speaker recognition, speaker verification 1. Introduction NIST... self -reported. Second, there were two training conditions in SRE16, namely fixed and open. In the fixed training condition, par- ticipants were only

  10. Similar speaker recognition using nonlinear analysis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Seo, J.P.; Kim, M.S.; Baek, I.C.; Kwon, Y.H.; Lee, K.S.; Chang, S.W.; Yang, S.I.

    2004-01-01

    Speech features of the conventional speaker identification system, are usually obtained by linear methods in spectral space. However, these methods have the drawback that speakers with similar voices cannot be distinguished, because the characteristics of their voices are also similar in spectral space. To overcome the difficulty in linear methods, we propose to use the correlation exponent in the nonlinear space as a new feature vector for speaker identification among persons with similar voices. We show that our proposed method surprisingly reduces the error rate of speaker identification system to speakers with similar voices

  11. Hybrid Speaker Recognition Using Universal Acoustic Model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nishimura, Jun; Kuroda, Tadahiro

    We propose a novel speaker recognition approach using a speaker-independent universal acoustic model (UAM) for sensornet applications. In sensornet applications such as “Business Microscope”, interactions among knowledge workers in an organization can be visualized by sensing face-to-face communication using wearable sensor nodes. In conventional studies, speakers are detected by comparing energy of input speech signals among the nodes. However, there are often synchronization errors among the nodes which degrade the speaker recognition performance. By focusing on property of the speaker's acoustic channel, UAM can provide robustness against the synchronization error. The overall speaker recognition accuracy is improved by combining UAM with the energy-based approach. For 0.1s speech inputs and 4 subjects, speaker recognition accuracy of 94% is achieved at the synchronization error less than 100ms.

  12. What makes a charismatic speaker?

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Niebuhr, Oliver; Voße, Jana; Brem, Alexander

    2016-01-01

    The former Apple CEO Steve Jobs was one of the most charismatic speakers of the past decades. However, there is, as yet, no detailed quantitative profile of his way of speaking. We used state-of-the-art computer techniques to acoustically analyze his speech behavior and relate it to reference...... samples. Our paper provides the first-ever acoustic profile of Steve Jobs, based on about 4000 syllables and 12,000 individual speech sounds from his two most outstanding and well-known product presentations: the introductions of the iPhone 4 and the iPad 2. Our results show that Steve Jobs stands out...

  13. Phonetic and phonological imitation of intonation in two varieties of Italian

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mariapaola eD'Imperio

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available The aim of this study was to test whether both phonetic and phonological representations of intonation can be rapidly modified when imitating utterances belonging to a different regional variety of the same language. Our main hypothesis was that tonal alignment, just as other phonetic features of speech, would be rapidly modified by Italian speakers when imitating pitch accents of a different (Southern variety of Italian. In particular, we tested whether Bari Italian speakers would produce later peaks for their native rising L+H* (question pitch accent in the process of imitating Neapolitan Italian rising L*+H accents. Also, we tested whether BI speakers are able to modify other phonetic properties (pitch level as well as phonological characteristics (changes in tonal composition of the same contour. In a follow-up study, we tested if the reverse was also true, i.e. whether NI speakers would produce earlier peaks within the L*+H accent in the process of imitating the L+H* of BI questions, despite the presence of a contrast between two rising accents in this variety. Our results show that phonetic detail of tonal alignment can be successfully modified by both BI and NI speakers when imitating a model speaker of the other variety. The hypothesis of a selective imitation process preventing alignment modifications in NI was hence not supported. Moreover the effect was significantly stronger for low frequency words. Participants were also able to imitate other phonetic cues, in that they modified global utterance pitch level. Concerning phonological convergence, speakers modified the tonal specification of the edge tones in order to resemble that of the other variety by either suppressing or increasing the presence of a final H%. Hence, our data show that intonation imitation leads to fast modification of both phonetic and phonological intonation representations including detail of tonal alignment and pitch scaling.

  14. Italian information geographies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maria Paradiso

    2013-05-01

    Full Text Available Introduction A range of papers focusing on Italian cases of ICTs use and changes in society are presented here in this NETCOM issue. A national research group on Geography of Information Society was founded in 2007 and hosted by the Italian Geographical Society later evolved in a specialty group within AgeI, the Association of Italian Geographers. This issue brings together papers from members of the Italian specialty group along the general theme of Internet mediation in everyday life. A pre...

  15. non-metropolitan stars

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elena Grigoryeva

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Capitals gather constellations of bright and creative people, attracting them from the peripheries. Tchekhov’s sisters were anxious to get to Moscow, d’Artagnan – to Paris. Evtushenko, Shukshin and Gaidai ascended to the climax of their glory, having moved to the capital. Vampilov, Rasputin and Astafiev became internationally famous without leaving their home grounds, but having joined in the metropolitan whirl. In this regard, the architectural profession differs greatly from the literary and cinematographic ones. The destinies of the masters who fulfilled themselves far from the capital are different but equally bright and unique. The Irkutsk “Varangians”of the sixtieth – Voronezhsky, Bukh and Pavlov – built up their relations with geography in a different way:someone came from the capitals just for a few years that became the brightest, the most fruitful and the most interesting years of his creative life. But someone stayed in the non-metropolitan city for a long time and even forever. This subsection contains certain examples of self-fulfillment in the cities distant from the capitals: Khabarovsk, Irkutsk, Bratsk, Krasnoyarsk, Kemerovo and Anzhero-Sudzhensk.

  16. Speaker Segmentation and Clustering Using Gender Information

    Science.gov (United States)

    2006-02-01

    used in the first stages of segmentation forder information in the clustering of the opposite-gender speaker diarization of news broadcasts. files, the...AFRL-HE-WP-TP-2006-0026 AIR FORCE RESEARCH LABORATORY Speaker Segmentation and Clustering Using Gender Information Brian M. Ore General Dynamics...COVERED (From - To) February 2006 ProceedinLgs 4. TITLE AND SUBTITLE 5a. CONTRACT NUMBER Speaker Segmentation and Clustering Using Gender Information 5b

  17. Supervised and Unsupervised Speaker Adaptation in the NIST 2005 Speaker Recognition Evaluation

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Hansen, Eric G; Slyh, Raymond E; Anderson, Timothy R

    2006-01-01

    Starting in 2004, the annual NIST Speaker Recognition Evaluation (SRE) has added an optional unsupervised speaker adaptation track where test files are processed sequentially and one may update the target model...

  18. Speaker's presentations. Energy supply security

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Pierret, Ch.

    2000-01-01

    This document is a collection of most of the papers used by the speakers of the European Seminar on Energy Supply Security organised in Paris (at the French Ministry of Economy, Finance and Industry) on 24 November 2000 by the General Direction of Energy and Raw Materials, in co-operation with the European Commission and the French Planning Office. About 250 attendees were present, including a lot of high level Civil Servants from the 15 European State members, and their questions have allowed to create a rich debate. It took place five days before the publication, on 29 November 2000, by the European Commission, of the Green Paper 'Towards a European Strategy for the Security of Energy Supply'. This French initiative, which took place within the framework of the European Presidency of the European Union, during the second half-year 2000. will bring a first impetus to the brainstorming launched by the Commission. (author)

  19. Strategie di rifuto in Italiano: uno studio etnografico (Refusal Strategies in Italian: An Ethnographic Study).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frescura, Marina

    1997-01-01

    After reviewing previous research on speech acts, this article describes a study that analyzed the behavior of speakers of standard Italian in refusing an offer of food. The importance of "face" is explained, and the refusal strategies are classified into four categories: explicit, tactical, decisive, and conclusive. (CFM)

  20. Speaker-specific variability of phoneme durations

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Van Heerden, CJ

    2007-11-01

    Full Text Available The durations of phonemes varies for different speakers. To this end, the correlations between phonemes across different speakers are studied and a novel approach to predict unknown phoneme durations from the values of known phoneme durations for a...

  1. A New Database for Speaker Recognition

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Feng, Ling; Hansen, Lars Kai

    2005-01-01

    In this paper we discuss properties of speech databases used for speaker recognition research and evaluation, and we characterize some popular standard databases. The paper presents a new database called ELSDSR dedicated to speaker recognition applications. The main characteristics of this database...

  2. Metropolitan Lima: area profile.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hakkert, R

    1986-11-01

    This profile of metropolitan Lima, Peru, covers administrative divisions; population growth; age distribution; ethnicity and religion; housing and households; education and health care; economic activity, income, and consumption; transport and communication; and sources of information. Nearly 30% of Peru's entire population and 42% of its urban population live in Lima. The trend continues, yet Lima's urban primacy is waning due to the growth of some regional centers like Trujillo and Chimbote. Lima is still almost 10 times as large as the country's next ranking cities, Trujillo on the northern coast and Arequipa in the south. Peru's main administrative divisions are the 24 departments, of which the Department of Lima is one. These departments are further divided into 156 provinces. Greater Lima consists of 2 such provinces, the province of Lima and the constitutional province of Callao. Although the population of Lima continues to grow, its rate of growth slowed from about 5.5% during the 1960s to about 3.9% in the 1970s. Current projections estimate a metropolitan population of 6.7 million by 1990. On the whole, Lima's age structure is somewhat older than that of the rest of Peru. The median age of the population is 22.3 years, compared to a national figure of 20.4. The proportion of persons over age 65 is only 3.6%, lower than the national average of 4.1%, due to the tendency of in-migration to concentrate people of intermediate ages in the cities. Almost 400,000 inhabitants of greater Lima are bilingual in Spanish and an indigenous language. As elsewhere in Peru, the dominant religion is Roman Catholicism. Lima is a spread out city with few high rise buildings due to the danger of earthquakes. Only 12% of Lima's households are found in apartment buildings. As in other cities of Latin America, the formal housing market is beyond the reach of a major segment of the population. Consequently, much of the urban settlement has occurred through informal self

  3. Utterance Verification for Text-Dependent Speaker Recognition

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kinnunen, Tomi; Sahidullah, Md; Kukanov, Ivan

    2016-01-01

    Text-dependent automatic speaker verification naturally calls for the simultaneous verification of speaker identity and spoken content. These two tasks can be achieved with automatic speaker verification (ASV) and utterance verification (UV) technologies. While both have been addressed previously...

  4. Apology Strategy in English By Native Speaker

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mezia Kemala Sari

    2016-05-01

    Full Text Available This research discussed apology strategies in English by native speaker. This descriptive study was presented within the framework of Pragmatics based on the forms of strategies due to the coding manual as found in CCSARP (Cross-Cultural Speech Acts Realization Project.The goals of this study were to describe the apology strategies in English by native speaker and identify the influencing factors of it. Data were collected through the use of the questionnaire in the form of Discourse Completion Test, which was distributed to 30 native speakers. Data were classified based on the degree of familiarity and the social distance between speaker and hearer and then the data of native will be separated and classified by the type of strategies in coding manual. The results of this study are the pattern of apology strategies of native speaker brief with the pattern that potentially occurs IFID plus Offer of repair plus Taking on responsibility. While Alerters, Explanation and Downgrading appear with less number of percentage. Then, the factors that influence the apology utterance by native speakers are the social situation, the degree of familiarity and degree of the offence which more complicated the mistake tend to produce the most complex utterances by the speaker.

  5. Robust speaker recognition in noisy environments

    CERN Document Server

    Rao, K Sreenivasa

    2014-01-01

    This book discusses speaker recognition methods to deal with realistic variable noisy environments. The text covers authentication systems for; robust noisy background environments, functions in real time and incorporated in mobile devices. The book focuses on different approaches to enhance the accuracy of speaker recognition in presence of varying background environments. The authors examine: (a) Feature compensation using multiple background models, (b) Feature mapping using data-driven stochastic models, (c) Design of super vector- based GMM-SVM framework for robust speaker recognition, (d) Total variability modeling (i-vectors) in a discriminative framework and (e) Boosting method to fuse evidences from multiple SVM models.

  6. Robustness-related issues in speaker recognition

    CERN Document Server

    Zheng, Thomas Fang

    2017-01-01

    This book presents an overview of speaker recognition technologies with an emphasis on dealing with robustness issues. Firstly, the book gives an overview of speaker recognition, such as the basic system framework, categories under different criteria, performance evaluation and its development history. Secondly, with regard to robustness issues, the book presents three categories, including environment-related issues, speaker-related issues and application-oriented issues. For each category, the book describes the current hot topics, existing technologies, and potential research focuses in the future. The book is a useful reference book and self-learning guide for early researchers working in the field of robust speech recognition.

  7. The Italian energy sector

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Anon.

    1997-01-01

    The energy sector in Italy, as in Europe and in many other areas of the world, is undergoing rapid and profound changes. The 1986 ratification of the European Single Act was intended to create a European internal market, where circulation of people, capital, goods, and services would reach the highest possible liberalization. In 1988, in the document The Energy Internal Market, the European Union (EU) commission stressed the need for creation of an internal energy market--free of obstacles--to increase security of supply, to reduce costs, and to strengthen the competitiveness of the European economic system. In 1990, the Community Council adopted directives to implement the EU energy sector. This article describes Italy's role as part of the EU energy sector. It covers the following topics: the Italian energy sector; electricity vs gas transportation; project finance; recent developments advance Italian power industry; specifying powerplant components -- Italian stype; buyers' guide to Italian equipment, services

  8. On the optimization of a mixed speaker array in an enclosed space using the virtual-speaker weighting method

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peng, Bo; Zheng, Sifa; Liao, Xiangning; Lian, Xiaomin

    2018-03-01

    In order to achieve sound field reproduction in a wide frequency band, multiple-type speakers are used. The reproduction accuracy is not only affected by the signals sent to the speakers, but also depends on the position and the number of each type of speaker. The method of optimizing a mixed speaker array is investigated in this paper. A virtual-speaker weighting method is proposed to optimize both the position and the number of each type of speaker. In this method, a virtual-speaker model is proposed to quantify the increment of controllability of the speaker array when the speaker number increases. While optimizing a mixed speaker array, the gain of the virtual-speaker transfer function is used to determine the priority orders of the candidate speaker positions, which optimizes the position of each type of speaker. Then the relative gain of the virtual-speaker transfer function is used to determine whether the speakers are redundant, which optimizes the number of each type of speaker. Finally the virtual-speaker weighting method is verified by reproduction experiments of the interior sound field in a passenger car. The results validate that the optimum mixed speaker array can be obtained using the proposed method.

  9. Which Language R You Speaking? /r/ as a Language Marker in Tyrolean and Italian Bilinguals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaland, Constantijn; Galatà, Vincenzo; Spreafico, Lorenzo; Vietti, Alessandro

    2017-12-01

    Across languages of the world the /r/ sound is known for its variability. This variability has been investigated using articulatory models as well as in sociolinguistic studies. The current study investigates to what extent /r/ is a marker of a bilingual's dominant language. To this end, a reading task was carried out by bilingual speakers from South Tyrol, who produce /r/ differently according to whether they dominantly speak Tyrolean or Italian. The recorded reading data were subsequently used in a perception experiment to investigate whether South Tyrolean bilingual listeners are able to identify the dominant language of the speaker. Results indicate that listeners use /r/ as a cue to determine the dominant language of the speaker whilst relying on articulatory distinctions between the variants. It is furthermore shown that /r/ correlates with three interdependent variables: the sociolinguistic background of the speakers, their speech production, and how their speech is perceived.

  10. Data requirements for speaker independent acoustic models

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Badenhorst, JAC

    2008-11-01

    Full Text Available When developing speech recognition systems in resource-constrained environments, careful design of the training corpus can play an important role in compensating for data scarcity. One of the factors to consider relates to the speaker composition...

  11. CITTÀ METROPOLITANE E PROVINCE IN ITALIA: ORGANI, FUNZIONI FONDAMENTALI ED ESIGENZE DI RIDUZIONE DELLA SPESA

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Giovanni Cocozza

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available This paper analyses the problems derived from the metropolitan cities entities in Italy and the simultaneous reform of the provinces. These two issues are part of a broader and current Italian political debate related to targets for reduction of public spending and have to do with the achievement of a new order of local government different from that established in the Title V of the Italian Constitution after its 2001 reform. After an examination of previous attempts to regulate metropolitan cities entities, the article examines the aspects contained in decree law on spending review (d.l. n. 95/2012. In this way, the article aims to highlight both the difficulties and incoherencies of the identification of administrative functions and of the general structure to be assigned to the new level of government (the metropolitan city, provided in the Italian Constitution in 2001 but not yet established. Consequently, the article considers the effects that this new model has upon the other and already existing levels of government (such as municipalities, as provinces and as regions.

  12. Role of Speaker Cues in Attention Inference

    OpenAIRE

    Jin Joo Lee; Cynthia Breazeal; David DeSteno

    2017-01-01

    Current state-of-the-art approaches to emotion recognition primarily focus on modeling the nonverbal expressions of the sole individual without reference to contextual elements such as the co-presence of the partner. In this paper, we demonstrate that the accurate inference of listeners’ social-emotional state of attention depends on accounting for the nonverbal behaviors of their storytelling partner, namely their speaker cues. To gain a deeper understanding of the role of speaker cues in at...

  13. Pitch Correlogram Clustering for Fast Speaker Identification

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nitin Jhanwar

    2004-12-01

    Full Text Available Gaussian mixture models (GMMs are commonly used in text-independent speaker identification systems. However, for large speaker databases, their high computational run-time limits their use in online or real-time speaker identification situations. Two-stage identification systems, in which the database is partitioned into clusters based on some proximity criteria and only a single-cluster GMM is run in every test, have been suggested in literature to speed up the identification process. However, most clustering algorithms used have shown limited success, apparently because the clustering and GMM feature spaces used are derived from similar speech characteristics. This paper presents a new clustering approach based on the concept of a pitch correlogram that captures frame-to-frame pitch variations of a speaker rather than short-time spectral characteristics like cepstral coefficient, spectral slopes, and so forth. The effectiveness of this two-stage identification process is demonstrated on the IVIE corpus of 110 speakers. The overall system achieves a run-time advantage of 500% as well as a 10% reduction of error in overall speaker identification.

  14. Speakers' choice of frame in binary choice

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marc van Buiten

    2009-02-01

    Full Text Available A distinction is proposed between extit{recommending for} preferred choice options and extit{recommending against} non-preferred choice options. In binary choice, both recommendation modes are logically, though not psychologically, equivalent. We report empirical evidence showing that speakers recommending for preferred options predominantly select positive frames, which are less common when speakers recommend against non-preferred options. In addition, option attractiveness is shown to affect speakers' choice of frame, and adoption of recommendation mode. The results are interpreted in terms of three compatibility effects, (i extit{recommendation mode---valence framing compatibility}: speakers' preference for positive framing is enhanced under extit{recommending for} and diminished under extit{recommending against} instructions, (ii extit{option attractiveness---valence framing compatibility}: speakers' preference for positive framing is more pronounced for attractive than for unattractive options, and (iii extit{recommendation mode---option attractiveness compatibility}: speakers are more likely to adopt a extit{recommending for} approach for attractive than for unattractive binary choice pairs.

  15. Audiovisual perceptual learning with multiple speakers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mitchel, Aaron D; Gerfen, Chip; Weiss, Daniel J

    2016-05-01

    One challenge for speech perception is between-speaker variability in the acoustic parameters of speech. For example, the same phoneme (e.g. the vowel in "cat") may have substantially different acoustic properties when produced by two different speakers and yet the listener must be able to interpret these disparate stimuli as equivalent. Perceptual tuning, the use of contextual information to adjust phonemic representations, may be one mechanism that helps listeners overcome obstacles they face due to this variability during speech perception. Here we test whether visual contextual cues to speaker identity may facilitate the formation and maintenance of distributional representations for individual speakers, allowing listeners to adjust phoneme boundaries in a speaker-specific manner. We familiarized participants to an audiovisual continuum between /aba/ and /ada/. During familiarization, the "b-face" mouthed /aba/ when an ambiguous token was played, while the "D-face" mouthed /ada/. At test, the same ambiguous token was more likely to be identified as /aba/ when paired with a stilled image of the "b-face" than with an image of the "D-face." This was not the case in the control condition when the two faces were paired equally with the ambiguous token. Together, these results suggest that listeners may form speaker-specific phonemic representations using facial identity cues.

  16. Italian and Italian American Identity: A Visual Approach | Krase ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    This essay is a brief exploration of the related concepts of Italian Ethnicity and Italian Ethnic Identity via a Visual Sociological study of two geographically different venues — Italian American neighbourhoods in the United States and neighbourhoods in Rome, Italy. By studying the Vernacular Landscape (Jackson, 1984) via ...

  17. The Italian LPG market

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Anon.

    1998-01-01

    As happened in other European countries, the Italian LPG consumption market narrowed in 1997 for climatic reasons. Still, with some 3,5 million tones it is the first LPG market in Europe thanks to automotive LPG which represents some 1,2 million tones, for 1,4 million tones for the bulk and 760, 000 tonnes for bottled products. Another characteristic of the Italian market: demand is slightly lowering in the North while increasing in the South and in the large islands. (author)

  18. Phonological competence development in Italian as second/foreign language

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anja Zorman

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available In language courses and teaching materials for Italian as a second or foreign language little attention is generally paid to the development of phonological competence and of speaking ability. The present study involved 140 pupils of elementary schools with Slovene as the language of instruction in the bilingual area of the Slovene Coastal area where Italian is taught as a second language. The research investigated the impact of phonology teaching and the development of phonological awareness on auditory perception abilities. The findings show that programs for the development of discriminatory listening and phonological segmentation of linguistic input critically influence the pupils’ ability of auditory perception, provided such programs are long-term, systematic, intensive, and carried out through direct interaction between the pupils and speakers of the target language. Consequently, such programs also enhance enhance the development of listening comprehension and communicative competence in the target language.

  19. Role of Speaker Cues in Attention Inference

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jin Joo Lee

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available Current state-of-the-art approaches to emotion recognition primarily focus on modeling the nonverbal expressions of the sole individual without reference to contextual elements such as the co-presence of the partner. In this paper, we demonstrate that the accurate inference of listeners’ social-emotional state of attention depends on accounting for the nonverbal behaviors of their storytelling partner, namely their speaker cues. To gain a deeper understanding of the role of speaker cues in attention inference, we conduct investigations into real-world interactions of children (5–6 years old storytelling with their peers. Through in-depth analysis of human–human interaction data, we first identify nonverbal speaker cues (i.e., backchannel-inviting cues and listener responses (i.e., backchannel feedback. We then demonstrate how speaker cues can modify the interpretation of attention-related backchannels as well as serve as a means to regulate the responsiveness of listeners. We discuss the design implications of our findings toward our primary goal of developing attention recognition models for storytelling robots, and we argue that social robots can proactively use speaker cues to form more accurate inferences about the attentive state of their human partners.

  20. Automatic Speaker Recognition for Mobile Forensic Applications

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mohammed Algabri

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Presently, lawyers, law enforcement agencies, and judges in courts use speech and other biometric features to recognize suspects. In general, speaker recognition is used for discriminating people based on their voices. The process of determining, if a suspected speaker is the source of trace, is called forensic speaker recognition. In such applications, the voice samples are most probably noisy, the recording sessions might mismatch each other, the sessions might not contain sufficient recording for recognition purposes, and the suspect voices are recorded through mobile channel. The identification of a person through his voice within a forensic quality context is challenging. In this paper, we propose a method for forensic speaker recognition for the Arabic language; the King Saud University Arabic Speech Database is used for obtaining experimental results. The advantage of this database is that each speaker’s voice is recorded in both clean and noisy environments, through a microphone and a mobile channel. This diversity facilitates its usage in forensic experimentations. Mel-Frequency Cepstral Coefficients are used for feature extraction and the Gaussian mixture model-universal background model is used for speaker modeling. Our approach has shown low equal error rates (EER, within noisy environments and with very short test samples.

  1. Apologizing in Italian and English.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lipson, Maxine

    1994-01-01

    Compared apology exchanges in Italy and the United States by having 10 Italian university students view American situation comedy television programs and rewrite particular conflict and apology exchanges in an Italian context. The status and role of the programs' participants affected the Italian students' choice of apology strategies more so than…

  2. Italian in the Modern World.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adorno, Elvira, Ed.

    This booklet of 15 reprinted letters sent in response to a query concerning the actual use of Italian in the United States designates various areas of professional application. Some reference to current Italian publications is included. It is hoped that these letters will help promote the study of Italian in American schools. (RL)

  3. Metropolitan siting: a historical perspective

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bunch, D.F.

    1978-09-01

    The paper discusses the development and implementation of the Reactor Site Criteria and particularly the evolving posture of the agency on the subject of metropolitan siting. The review actions on nine sites are described to illustrate the various issues and positions and to clarify at least some of the bases for current practices of the NRC staff

  4. The Italian gas market

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ferrari, A.

    2004-01-01

    The first meeting of the French gas association (AFG) of the year 2004 was devoted to the Italian gas market. Two experts of this market were invited: A. Ferrari, general director of the Italian gas and electricity regulation authority, and D. Dispenza, vice-general director of Eni Division Gas and Power. This conference was the occasion to compare the French and Italian gas industries. France and Italy have a border in common and also a series of common structural characteristics: the dependence with respect to foreign supplies, the position of the public company, the sensitiveness with respect to the security of supplies, to the role of storage and to the public utility. The French and Italian decisions are inter-dependent. The liberalization taking place with an unpredictable rate, it is necessary for the gas industry to anticipate its effects. When the political, legal and regulatory decisions are enforced, the initiative comes back to the hands of the industry. In this context, the trend of the transfrontier industries becomes particularly important for the regulatory authority. (J.S.)

  5. Italian energy policy

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1988-01-01

    This document discusses problems associated with Italian energy policy; economic and industrial development as it relates to that policy is covered. Specific areas covered are: (1) the basis of Italy's new energy policy; (2) energy demand; (3) five objectives; (4) the electrical power system; (5) proposed action; and (6) energy resources

  6. Italian Society of Physics

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Anon.

    1987-01-01

    The abstracts of most of the papers read at the 53 National Congress of the Italian Society of Physics are presented. The Congress developed in ten sessions: high energy and elementary particle physics, physics of nuclei, condensed matter, quantum electronics, cosmic physics, geophysics, general physics, electronics and applied physics, health physics and hystory of physics. An author index is also included

  7. Gricean Semantics and Vague Speaker-Meaning

    OpenAIRE

    Schiffer, Stephen

    2017-01-01

    Presentations of Gricean semantics, including Stephen Neale’s in “Silent Reference,” totally ignore vagueness, even though virtually every utterance is vague. I ask how Gricean semantics might be adjusted to accommodate vague speaker-meaning. My answer is that it can’t accommodate it: the Gricean program collapses in the face of vague speaker-meaning. The Gricean might, however, fi nd some solace in knowing that every other extant meta-semantic and semantic program is in the same boat.

  8. Speaker Prediction based on Head Orientations

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Rienks, R.J.; Poppe, Ronald Walter; van Otterlo, M.; Poel, Mannes; Poel, M.; Nijholt, A.; Nijholt, Antinus

    2005-01-01

    To gain insight into gaze behavior in meetings, this paper compares the results from a Naive Bayes classifier, Neural Networks and humans on speaker prediction in four-person meetings given solely the azimuth head angles. The Naive Bayes classifier scored 69.4% correctly, Neural Networks 62.3% and

  9. Study of audio speakers containing ferrofluid

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Rosensweig, R E [34 Gloucester Road, Summit, NJ 07901 (United States); Hirota, Y; Tsuda, S [Ferrotec, 1-4-14 Kyobashi, chuo-Ku, Tokyo 104-0031 (Japan); Raj, K [Ferrotec, 33 Constitution Drive, Bedford, NH 03110 (United States)

    2008-05-21

    This work validates a method for increasing the radial restoring force on the voice coil in audio speakers containing ferrofluid. In addition, a study is made of factors influencing splash loss of the ferrofluid due to shock. Ferrohydrodynamic analysis is employed throughout to model behavior, and predictions are compared to experimental data.

  10. B Anand | Speakers | Indian Academy of Sciences

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    However, the mechanism by which this protospacer fragment gets integrated in a directional fashion into the leader proximal end is elusive. The speakers group identified that the leader region abutting the first CRISPR repeat localizes Integration Host Factor (IHF) and Cas1-2 complex in Escherichia coli. IHF binding to the ...

  11. Using timing information in speaker verification

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Van Heerden, CJ

    2005-11-01

    Full Text Available This paper presents an analysis of temporal information as a feature for use in speaker verification systems. The relevance of temporal information in a speaker’s utterances is investigated, both with regard to improving the robustness of modern...

  12. Speaker recognition through NLP and CWT modeling.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Brown-VanHoozer, A.; Kercel, S. W.; Tucker, R. W.

    1999-06-23

    The objective of this research is to develop a system capable of identifying speakers on wiretaps from a large database (>500 speakers) with a short search time duration (<30 seconds), and with better than 90% accuracy. Much previous research in speaker recognition has led to algorithms that produced encouraging preliminary results, but were overwhelmed when applied to populations of more than a dozen or so different speakers. The authors are investigating a solution to the ''huge population'' problem by seeking two completely different kinds of characterizing features. These features are extracted using the techniques of Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP) and the continuous wavelet transform (CWT). NLP extracts precise neurological, verbal and non-verbal information, and assimilates the information into useful patterns. These patterns are based on specific cues demonstrated by each individual, and provide ways of determining congruency between verbal and non-verbal cues. The primary NLP modalities are characterized through word spotting (or verbal predicates cues, e.g., see, sound, feel, etc.) while the secondary modalities would be characterized through the speech transcription used by the individual. This has the practical effect of reducing the size of the search space, and greatly speeding up the process of identifying an unknown speaker. The wavelet-based line of investigation concentrates on using vowel phonemes and non-verbal cues, such as tempo. The rationale for concentrating on vowels is there are a limited number of vowels phonemes, and at least one of them usually appears in even the shortest of speech segments. Using the fast, CWT algorithm, the details of both the formant frequency and the glottal excitation characteristics can be easily extracted from voice waveforms. The differences in the glottal excitation waveforms as well as the formant frequency are evident in the CWT output. More significantly, the CWT reveals significant

  13. Electricity : Italian style

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Murray, L.

    2007-01-01

    Italy's electricity system was described. Italy relies on outside sources for between 10 and 15 per cent of its electricity supply. Most Italians use gas, wood stoves and fossil fuels, and are conservative about lighting. Electricity costs more in Italy than in any other European country. Italy made the decision to decommission its nuclear power stations after Chernobyl. In 2005, Italy's largest utility group signed a memorandum of understanding ensuring that they would contract energy from France's nuclear reactors. Italy is now financing and managing projects in Russia and eastern Europe, and has strengthened its ties in Spain and the Netherlands. Although Italy is intent on producing its own power, the perceptions of health hazards from electricity towers cause citizens to strongly protest new installations. It was concluded that rising energy prices may force Italians to reconsider the use of alternative energy sources. 3 figs

  14. When speaker identity is unavoidable: Neural processing of speaker identity cues in natural speech.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tuninetti, Alba; Chládková, Kateřina; Peter, Varghese; Schiller, Niels O; Escudero, Paola

    2017-11-01

    Speech sound acoustic properties vary largely across speakers and accents. When perceiving speech, adult listeners normally disregard non-linguistic variation caused by speaker or accent differences, in order to comprehend the linguistic message, e.g. to correctly identify a speech sound or a word. Here we tested whether the process of normalizing speaker and accent differences, facilitating the recognition of linguistic information, is found at the level of neural processing, and whether it is modulated by the listeners' native language. In a multi-deviant oddball paradigm, native and nonnative speakers of Dutch were exposed to naturally-produced Dutch vowels varying in speaker, sex, accent, and phoneme identity. Unexpectedly, the analysis of mismatch negativity (MMN) amplitudes elicited by each type of change shows a large degree of early perceptual sensitivity to non-linguistic cues. This finding on perception of naturally-produced stimuli contrasts with previous studies examining the perception of synthetic stimuli wherein adult listeners automatically disregard acoustic cues to speaker identity. The present finding bears relevance to speech normalization theories, suggesting that at an unattended level of processing, listeners are indeed sensitive to changes in fundamental frequency in natural speech tokens. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  15. Unsupervised Speaker Change Detection for Broadcast News Segmentation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jørgensen, Kasper Winther; Mølgaard, Lasse Lohilahti; Hansen, Lars Kai

    2006-01-01

    This paper presents a speaker change detection system for news broadcast segmentation based on a vector quantization (VQ) approach. The system does not make any assumption about the number of speakers or speaker identity. The system uses mel frequency cepstral coefficients and change detection...

  16. Accent Attribution in Speakers with Foreign Accent Syndrome

    Science.gov (United States)

    Verhoeven, Jo; De Pauw, Guy; Pettinato, Michele; Hirson, Allen; Van Borsel, John; Marien, Peter

    2013-01-01

    Purpose: The main aim of this experiment was to investigate the perception of Foreign Accent Syndrome in comparison to speakers with an authentic foreign accent. Method: Three groups of listeners attributed accents to conversational speech samples of 5 FAS speakers which were embedded amongst those of 5 speakers with a real foreign accent and 5…

  17. Young Children's Sensitivity to Speaker Gender When Learning from Others

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ma, Lili; Woolley, Jacqueline D.

    2013-01-01

    This research explores whether young children are sensitive to speaker gender when learning novel information from others. Four- and 6-year-olds ("N" = 144) chose between conflicting statements from a male versus a female speaker (Studies 1 and 3) or decided which speaker (male or female) they would ask (Study 2) when learning about the functions…

  18. Speaker Reliability Guides Children's Inductive Inferences about Novel Properties

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Sunae; Kalish, Charles W.; Harris, Paul L.

    2012-01-01

    Prior work shows that children can make inductive inferences about objects based on their labels rather than their appearance (Gelman, 2003). A separate line of research shows that children's trust in a speaker's label is selective. Children accept labels from a reliable speaker over an unreliable speaker (e.g., Koenig & Harris, 2005). In the…

  19. Vocal caricatures reveal signatures of speaker identity

    Science.gov (United States)

    López, Sabrina; Riera, Pablo; Assaneo, María Florencia; Eguía, Manuel; Sigman, Mariano; Trevisan, Marcos A.

    2013-12-01

    What are the features that impersonators select to elicit a speaker's identity? We built a voice database of public figures (targets) and imitations produced by professional impersonators. They produced one imitation based on their memory of the target (caricature) and another one after listening to the target audio (replica). A set of naive participants then judged identity and similarity of pairs of voices. Identity was better evoked by the caricatures and replicas were perceived to be closer to the targets in terms of voice similarity. We used this data to map relevant acoustic dimensions for each task. Our results indicate that speaker identity is mainly associated with vocal tract features, while perception of voice similarity is related to vocal folds parameters. We therefore show the way in which acoustic caricatures emphasize identity features at the cost of loosing similarity, which allows drawing an analogy with caricatures in the visual space.

  20. Methods of Speakers\\' Effects on the Audience

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    فریبا حسینی

    2010-09-01

    Full Text Available Methods of Speakers' Effects on the Audience    Nasrollah Shameli *   Fariba Hosayni **     Abstract   This article is focused on four issues. The first issue is related to the speaker's external appearance including the beauty of face, the power of his voice, moves and signals by hand, the stick and eyebrow as well as the height. Such characteristics could have an important effect on the audience. The second issue is related to internal features of the speaker. These include the ethics of the preacher , his/her piety and intention on the speakers based on their personalities, habits and emotions, knowledge and culture, and speed of learning. The third issue is concerned with the appearance of the lecture. Words should be clear enough as well as being mixed with Quranic verses, poetry and proverbs. The final issue is related to the content. It is argued that the subject of the talk should be in accordance with the level of understanding of listeners as well as being new and interesting for them.   3 - A phenomenon rhetoric: It was noted in this section How to give words and phrases so that these words and phrases are clear, correct, mixed in parables, governance and Quranic verses, and appropriate their meaning.   4 - the content of Oratory : It was noted in this section to the topic of Oratory and say that the Oratory should be the theme commensurate with the minds of audiences and also should mean that agree with the case may be, then I say: that the rhetoric if the theme was innovative and new is affecting more and more on the audience.     Key words : Oratory , Preacher , Audience, Influence of speech     * Associate Professor, Department of Arabic Language and Literature, University of Isfahan E-mail: Dr-Nasrolla Shameli@Yahoo.com   * * M.A. in Arabic Language and Literature from Isfahan University E-mail: faribahosayni@yahoo.com

  1. Physiological responses at short distances from a parametric speaker

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lee Soomin

    2012-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract In recent years, parametric speakers have been used in various circumstances. In our previous studies, we verified that the physiological burden of the sound of parametric speaker set at 2.6 m from the subjects was lower than that of the general speaker. However, nothing has yet been demonstrated about the effects of the sound of a parametric speaker at the shorter distance between parametric speakers the human body. Therefore, we studied this effect on physiological functions and task performance. Nine male subjects participated in this study. They completed three consecutive sessions: a 20-minute quiet period as a baseline, a 30-minute mental task period with general speakers or parametric speakers, and a 20-minute recovery period. We measured electrocardiogram (ECG photoplethysmogram (PTG, electroencephalogram (EEG, systolic and diastolic blood pressure. Four experiments, one with a speaker condition (general speaker and parametric speaker, the other with a distance condition (0.3 m and 1.0 m, were conducted respectively at the same time of day on separate days. To examine the effects of the speaker and distance, three-way repeated measures ANOVA (speaker factor x distance factor x time factor were conducted. In conclusion, we found that the physiological responses were not significantly different between the speaker condition and the distance condition. Meanwhile, it was shown that the physiological burdens increased with progress in time independently of speaker condition and distance condition. In summary, the effects of the parametric speaker at the 2.6 m distance were not obtained at the distance of 1 m or less.

  2. English Speakers Attend More Strongly than Spanish Speakers to Manner of Motion when Classifying Novel Objects and Events

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kersten, Alan W.; Meissner, Christian A.; Lechuga, Julia; Schwartz, Bennett L.; Albrechtsen, Justin S.; Iglesias, Adam

    2010-01-01

    Three experiments provide evidence that the conceptualization of moving objects and events is influenced by one's native language, consistent with linguistic relativity theory. Monolingual English speakers and bilingual Spanish/English speakers tested in an English-speaking context performed better than monolingual Spanish speakers and bilingual…

  3. Grammatical Planning Units during Real-Time Sentence Production in Speakers with Agrammatic Aphasia and Healthy Speakers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Jiyeon; Yoshida, Masaya; Thompson, Cynthia K.

    2015-01-01

    Purpose: Grammatical encoding (GE) is impaired in agrammatic aphasia; however, the nature of such deficits remains unclear. We examined grammatical planning units during real-time sentence production in speakers with agrammatic aphasia and control speakers, testing two competing models of GE. We queried whether speakers with agrammatic aphasia…

  4. No grammatical gender effect on affective ratings: evidence from Italian and German languages.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Montefinese, Maria; Ambrosini, Ettore; Roivainen, Eka

    2018-06-06

    In this study, we tested the linguistic relativity hypothesis by studying the effect of grammatical gender (feminine vs. masculine) on affective judgments of conceptual representation in Italian and German. In particular, we examined the within- and cross-language grammatical gender effect and its interaction with participants' demographic characteristics (such as, the raters' age and sex) on semantic differential scales (affective ratings of valence, arousal and dominance) in Italian and German speakers. We selected the stimuli and the relative affective measures from Italian and German adaptations of the ANEW (Affective Norms for English Words). Bayesian and frequentist analyses yielded evidence for the absence of within- and cross-languages effects of grammatical gender and sex- and age-dependent interactions. These results suggest that grammatical gender does not affect judgments of affective features of semantic representation in Italian and German speakers, since an overt coding of word grammar is not required. Although further research is recommended to refine the impact of the grammatical gender on properties of semantic representation, these results have implications for any strong view of the linguistic relativity hypothesis.

  5. The Italian decommissioning industry

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Adinolfi, R.

    2005-01-01

    Full text: Italy's step out from nuclear activities in 1987 deeply affected an industry that, in the previous years, had managed to grow up in quality and technology levels to meet the nuclear standards. Only a few companies were able to partially retain their skills through activities abroad. The decommissioning program represents a new challenge for the Italian industry at large and will require a consistent effort to properly qualify the potential suppliers. On the other side, a program with such implications in terms of investments and so depending from social aspects cannot be effectively implemented without a significant involvement of the local industry. Essential conditions for the success are a reliable program, as well as a careful supply management scheme, which must facilitate aggregation of skills spread among different subjects. 'Human Resources: Maintaining a Nuclear Culture in Italy' Bruno Panella Politecnico di Torino, Giuseppe Forasassi, Universita di Pisa, Inter-University Consortium for the Nuclear Technological Research (CIRTEN). After a brief history of the nuclear engineering education in Italy within the international and national nuclear energy scenario, the present situation, with reference to the Italian universities, is shown. In order to maintain a nuclear culture in Italy the solution, exploited with different peculiarities in each University, is to carry out high quality research activities in reciprocal collaboration (mostly within the CIRTEN inter university Consortium) as well as with the Industry and research Organisations and to collaborate actively in establishing a stable network and a synergy of teaching activities in Europe in the field of Nuclear Engineering Education. The aim is to maintain at a high level and as updated as possible the Italian educational offer in nuclear engineering and also to attract the best students for the enrolment. (author)

  6. Italian bioclimatic architecture

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    D' Errico, E

    1987-04-01

    This paper deals with the results of solar space heating research developed within the Finalized Energy Project of the National Research Council of Italy. Energy and cost/benefit parameters were compared for a certain number of Italian buildings incorporating solar architecture. The technical and economic analysis was performed on 31 buildings, of which 24 are residential, and 7 are schools, with different solar devices (direct gain, Trombe walls, sunspaces, hybrid systems). The buildings were constructed between 1976 and 1982. The results emphasize that simple technologies with lower costs and good design usually have a higher performance/cost ratio.

  7. Cities at risk: status of Italian planning system in reducing seismic and hydrogeological risks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Grazia Di Giovanni

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available Italy and its urban systems are under high seismic and hydrogeological risks. The awareness about the role of human activities in the genesis of disasters is achieved in the scientific debate, as well as the role of urban and regional planning in reducing risks. The paper reviews the state of Italian major cities referred to hydrogeological and seismic risk by: 1 extrapolating data and maps about seismic hazard and landslide risk concerning cities with more than 50.000 inhabitants and metropolitan contexts, and 2 outlining how risk reduction is framed in Italian planning system (at national and regional levels. The analyses of available data and the review of the normative framework highlight the existing gaps in addressing risk reduction: nevertheless a wide knowledge about natural risks afflicting Italian territory and an articulated regulatory framework, the available data about risks are not exhaustive, and risk reduction policies and multidisciplinary pro-active approaches are only partially fostered and applied.

  8. A system of automatic speaker recognition on a minicomputer

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    El Chafei, Cherif

    1978-01-01

    This study describes a system of automatic speaker recognition using the pitch of the voice. The pre-treatment consists in the extraction of the speakers' discriminating characteristics taken from the pitch. The programme of recognition gives, firstly, a preselection and then calculates the distance between the speaker's characteristics to be recognized and those of the speakers already recorded. An experience of recognition has been realized. It has been undertaken with 15 speakers and included 566 tests spread over an intermittent period of four months. The discriminating characteristics used offer several interesting qualities. The algorithms concerning the measure of the characteristics on one hand, the speakers' classification on the other hand, are simple. The results obtained in real time with a minicomputer are satisfactory. Furthermore they probably could be improved if we considered other speaker's discriminating characteristics but this was unfortunately not in our possibilities. (author) [fr

  9. Funding fears spark Italian protests

    CERN Multimedia

    Abbott, A

    2001-01-01

    150 Italian scientists took part in a symbolic funeral in Milan for Italian research. Scientists are worried that the new government will reduce support for basic research. Rumours that budgets will be cut are being confirmed and last week the government rejected the 3-year plan of the National Research Council, which had proposed an expansion of staff (1/2 page).

  10. Visit of the Italian President

    CERN Multimedia

    2003-01-01

    "CERN stands as the demonstration of the great results that science can achieve [...] when it succeeds in getting all the main players in international scientific cooperation involved," stated the President of the Italian Republic, Carlo Azeglio Ciampi, in front of an overcrowded and enthusiastic Main Auditorium. The President visited CERN on 2nd December, and met the CERN directorate as well as the Italians at CERN. With about 1500 Italians working at CERN, which is one sixth of the total personnel, they are the second largest nationality at CERN. The Italian President visited the CMS assembly hall and the LHC superconducting magnet test hall before meeting the CERN community, in particular Italian personnel, in the main auditorium. There he emphasised the role of CERN as a transnational model for research which not only achieved great results in science but is also a powerful vehicle for progress in other fields. President Ciampi visits the LHC superconducting test hall together with Luciano Maiani and Lu...

  11. Italians and Foreign Immigration

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Corrado Bonifazi

    2006-01-01

    Full Text Available Opinion surveys on attitudes towards immigration are becoming more and more important, owing to the increasing role of political debate on migration issues in Western European countries. CNR has conducted four surveys on this topic, collecting data on the evolution of Italians attitudes towards migration issues. In fact, the ? rst survey was conducted in the second half of the eighties, when foreign immigration was in its early stages. The last survey took place in 2002, when immigration was already well established in Italy. The article focuses on three main issues: the global impact of immigration on Italian society, the immigrants role in the labour market, and immigration policy. In general, the results of the last survey con? rm a trend that appeared already in 1997, of more balanced and realistic opinion that were less of a response to circumstances perceived as special emergencies. Highly educated people, teachers and students continue to be the most open and receptive groups, whereas the less favourably inclined and more worried continue to be old people, those with less education, the unemployed, housewives, and retirees.

  12. Speaker-dependent Dictionary-based Speech Enhancement for Text-Dependent Speaker Verification

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Thomsen, Nicolai Bæk; Thomsen, Dennis Alexander Lehmann; Tan, Zheng-Hua

    2016-01-01

    not perform well in this setting. In this work we compare the performance of different noise reduction methods under different noise conditions in terms of speaker verification when the text is known and the system is trained on clean data (mis-matched conditions). We furthermore propose a new approach based......The problem of text-dependent speaker verification under noisy conditions is becoming ever more relevant, due to increased usage for authentication in real-world applications. Classical methods for noise reduction such as spectral subtraction and Wiener filtering introduce distortion and do...... on dictionary-based noise reduction and compare it to the baseline methods....

  13. Premises for Shaping Metropolitan Areas in Romania

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    RAULARIAN RUSU

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available The setting up of metropolitan areas is a process which is still in progress in Romania. The legislative framework for the creation of these areas has been built up only since 2001, and there are still a number of juridical inconsistencies concerning the association of administrative units to form metropolitan areas. On the other hand, political reasons and the fear of losing a certain degree of authority and to become subordinates of the large cities (in the case of rural municipalities also hindered the development of metropolitan areas in Romania. Nevertheless, the metropolitan areas already in existence are running a number of projects that are beneficial for most members of the association. Such positive examples may trigger the creation of the other metropolitan areas. Although the existing metropolitan areas did not yield spectacular results, the time passed since their foundation is yet too short to correctly assess their usefulness and territorial meaning. For the moment, the following metropolitan areas exist in Romania: Iaşi, Oradea, Braşov, Constanţa, Bacău, Cluj-Napoca, Târgu Mureş and Craiova. Bucharest, Timişoara, Ploieşti and Galaţi-Brăila metropolitan areas are still in process of setting up.

  14. Speaker's voice as a memory cue.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Campeanu, Sandra; Craik, Fergus I M; Alain, Claude

    2015-02-01

    Speaker's voice occupies a central role as the cornerstone of auditory social interaction. Here, we review the evidence suggesting that speaker's voice constitutes an integral context cue in auditory memory. Investigation into the nature of voice representation as a memory cue is essential to understanding auditory memory and the neural correlates which underlie it. Evidence from behavioral and electrophysiological studies suggest that while specific voice reinstatement (i.e., same speaker) often appears to facilitate word memory even without attention to voice at study, the presence of a partial benefit of similar voices between study and test is less clear. In terms of explicit memory experiments utilizing unfamiliar voices, encoding methods appear to play a pivotal role. Voice congruency effects have been found when voice is specifically attended at study (i.e., when relatively shallow, perceptual encoding takes place). These behavioral findings coincide with neural indices of memory performance such as the parietal old/new recollection effect and the late right frontal effect. The former distinguishes between correctly identified old words and correctly identified new words, and reflects voice congruency only when voice is attended at study. Characterization of the latter likely depends upon voice memory, rather than word memory. There is also evidence to suggest that voice effects can be found in implicit memory paradigms. However, the presence of voice effects appears to depend greatly on the task employed. Using a word identification task, perceptual similarity between study and test conditions is, like for explicit memory tests, crucial. In addition, the type of noise employed appears to have a differential effect. While voice effects have been observed when white noise is used at both study and test, using multi-talker babble does not confer the same results. In terms of neuroimaging research modulations, characterization of an implicit memory effect

  15. Speaker diarization system using HXLPS and deep neural network

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    V. Subba Ramaiah

    2018-03-01

    Full Text Available In general, speaker diarization is defined as the process of segmenting the input speech signal and grouped the homogenous regions with regard to the speaker identity. The main idea behind this system is that it is able to discriminate the speaker signal by assigning the label of the each speaker signal. Due to rapid growth of broadcasting and meeting, the speaker diarization is burdensome to enhance the readability of the speech transcription. In order to solve this issue, Holoentropy with the eXtended Linear Prediction using autocorrelation Snapshot (HXLPS and deep neural network (DNN is proposed for the speaker diarization system. The HXLPS extraction method is newly developed by incorporating the Holoentropy with the XLPS. Once we attain the features, the speech and non-speech signals are detected by the Voice Activity Detection (VAD method. Then, i-vector representation of every segmented signal is obtained using Universal Background Model (UBM model. Consequently, DNN is utilized to assign the label for the speaker signal which is then clustered according to the speaker label. The performance is analysed using the evaluation metrics, such as tracking distance, false alarm rate and diarization error rate. The outcome of the proposed method ensures the better diarization performance by achieving the lower DER of 1.36% based on lambda value and DER of 2.23% depends on the frame length. Keywords: Speaker diarization, HXLPS feature extraction, Voice activity detection, Deep neural network, Speaker clustering, Diarization Error Rate (DER

  16. Communication Interface for Mexican Spanish Dysarthric Speakers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gladys Bonilla-Enriquez

    2012-03-01

    Full Text Available La disartria es una discapacidad motora del habla caracterizada por debilidad o poca coordinación de los músculos del habla. Esta condición puede ser causada por un infarto, parálisis cerebral, o por una lesión severa en el cerebro. Para mexicanos con esta condición hay muy pocas, si es que hay alguna, tecnologías de asistencia para mejorar sus habilidades sociales de interacción. En este artículo presentamos nuestros avances hacia el desarrollo de una interfazde comunicación para hablantes con disartria cuya lengua materna sea el español mexicano. La metodología propuesta depende de (1 diseño especial de un corpus de entrenamiento con voz normal y recursos limitados, (2 adaptación de usuario estándar, y (3 control de la perplejidad del modelo de lenguaje para lograr alta precisión en el Reconocimiento Automático del Habla (RAH. La interfaz permite al usuario y terapéuta el realizar actividades como adaptación dinámica de usuario, adaptación de vocabulario, y síntesis de texto a voz. Pruebas en vivo fueron realizadas con un usuario con disartria leve, logrando precisiones de 93%-95% para habla espontánea.Dysarthria is a motor speech disorder due to weakness or poor coordination of the speechmuscles. This condition can be caused by a stroke, cerebral palsy, or by a traumatic braininjury. For Mexican people with this condition there are few, if any, assistive technologies to improve their social interaction skills. In this paper we present our advances towards the development of a communication interface for dysarthric speakers whose native language is Mexican Spanish. We propose a methodology that relies on (1 special design of a training normal-speech corpus with limited resources, (2 standard speaker adaptation, and (3 control of language model perplexity, to achieve high Automatic Speech Recognition (ASR accuracy. The interface allows the user and therapist to perform tasks such as dynamic speaker adaptation, vocabulary

  17. An Xrootd Italian Federation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Boccali, T; Mazzoni, E; Donvito, G; Diacono, D; Marzulli, G; Pompili, A; Ricca, G Della; Argiro, S; Gregori, D; Grandi, C; Bonacorsi, D; Lista, L; Fabozzi, F; Barone, L M; Santocchia, A; Riahi, H; Tricomi, A; Sgaravatto, M; Maron, G

    2014-01-01

    The Italian community in CMS has built a geographically distributed network in which all the data stored in the Italian region are available to all the users for their everyday work. This activity involves at different level all the CMS centers: the Tier1 at CNAF, all the four Tier2s (Bari, Rome, Legnaro and Pisa), and few Tier3s (Trieste, Perugia, Torino, Catania, Napoli, ...). The federation uses the new network connections as provided by GARR, our NREN (National Research and Education Network), which provides a minimum of 10 Gbit/s to all the sites via the GARR-X[2] project. The federation is currently based on Xrootd[1] technology, and on a Redirector aimed to seamlessly connect all the sites, giving the logical view of a single entity. A special configuration has been put in place for the Tier1, CNAF, where ad-hoc Xrootd changes have been implemented in order to protect the tape system from excessive stress, by not allowing WAN connections to access tape only files, on a file-by-file basis. In order to improve the overall performance while reading files, both in terms of bandwidth and latency, a hierarchy of xrootd redirectors has been implemented. The solution implemented provides a dedicated Redirector where all the INFN sites are registered, without considering their status (T1, T2, or T3 sites). An interesting use case were able to cover via the federation are disk-less Tier3s. The caching solution allows to operate a local storage with minimal human intervention: transfers are automatically done on a single file basis, and the cache is maintained operational by automatic removal of old files.

  18. An Xrootd Italian Federation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boccali, T.; Donvito, G.; Diacono, D.; Marzulli, G.; Pompili, A.; Della Ricca, G.; Mazzoni, E.; Argiro, S.; Gregori, D.; Grandi, C.; Bonacorsi, D.; Lista, L.; Fabozzi, F.; Barone, L. M.; Santocchia, A.; Riahi, H.; Tricomi, A.; Sgaravatto, M.; Maron, G.

    2014-06-01

    The Italian community in CMS has built a geographically distributed network in which all the data stored in the Italian region are available to all the users for their everyday work. This activity involves at different level all the CMS centers: the Tier1 at CNAF, all the four Tier2s (Bari, Rome, Legnaro and Pisa), and few Tier3s (Trieste, Perugia, Torino, Catania, Napoli, ...). The federation uses the new network connections as provided by GARR, our NREN (National Research and Education Network), which provides a minimum of 10 Gbit/s to all the sites via the GARR-X[2] project. The federation is currently based on Xrootd[1] technology, and on a Redirector aimed to seamlessly connect all the sites, giving the logical view of a single entity. A special configuration has been put in place for the Tier1, CNAF, where ad-hoc Xrootd changes have been implemented in order to protect the tape system from excessive stress, by not allowing WAN connections to access tape only files, on a file-by-file basis. In order to improve the overall performance while reading files, both in terms of bandwidth and latency, a hierarchy of xrootd redirectors has been implemented. The solution implemented provides a dedicated Redirector where all the INFN sites are registered, without considering their status (T1, T2, or T3 sites). An interesting use case were able to cover via the federation are disk-less Tier3s. The caching solution allows to operate a local storage with minimal human intervention: transfers are automatically done on a single file basis, and the cache is maintained operational by automatic removal of old files.

  19. Improving Speaker Recognition by Biometric Voice Deconstruction

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Luis Miguel eMazaira-Fernández

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available Person identification, especially in critical environments, has always been a subject of great interest. However, it has gained a new dimension in a world threatened by a new kind of terrorism that uses social networks (e.g. YouTube to broadcast its message. In this new scenario, classical identification methods (such fingerprints or face recognition have been forcedly replaced by alternative biometric characteristics such as voice, as sometimes this is the only feature available. Through the present paper, a new methodology to characterize speakers will be shown. This methodology is benefiting from the advances achieved during the last years in understanding and modelling voice production. The paper hypothesizes that a gender dependent characterization of speakers combined with the use of a new set of biometric parameters extracted from the components resulting from the deconstruction of the voice into its glottal source and vocal tract estimates, will enhance recognition rates when compared to classical approaches. A general description about the main hypothesis and the methodology followed to extract gender-dependent extended biometric parameters are given. Experimental validation is carried out both on a highly controlled acoustic condition database, and on a mobile phone network recorded under non-controlled acoustic conditions.

  20. Real Time Recognition Of Speakers From Internet Audio Stream

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Weychan Radoslaw

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available In this paper we present an automatic speaker recognition technique with the use of the Internet radio lossy (encoded speech signal streams. We show an influence of the audio encoder (e.g., bitrate on the speaker model quality. The model of each speaker was calculated with the use of the Gaussian mixture model (GMM approach. Both the speaker recognition and the further analysis were realized with the use of short utterances to facilitate real time processing. The neighborhoods of the speaker models were analyzed with the use of the ISOMAP algorithm. The experiments were based on four 1-hour public debates with 7–8 speakers (including the moderator, acquired from the Polish radio Internet services. The presented software was developed with the MATLAB environment.

  1. Effect of lisping on audience evaluation of male speakers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mowrer, D E; Wahl, P; Doolan, S J

    1978-05-01

    The social consequences of adult listeners' first impression of lisping were evaluated in two studies. Five adult speakers were rated by adult listeners with regard to speaking ability, intelligence, education, masculinity, and friendship. Results from both studies indicate that listeners rate adult speakers who demonstrate frontal lisping lower than nonlispers in all five categories investigated. Efforts to correct frontal lisping are justifiable on the basis of the poor impression lisping speakers make on the listener.

  2. The Speaker Gender Gap at Critical Care Conferences.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mehta, Sangeeta; Rose, Louise; Cook, Deborah; Herridge, Margaret; Owais, Sawayra; Metaxa, Victoria

    2018-06-01

    To review women's participation as faculty at five critical care conferences over 7 years. Retrospective analysis of five scientific programs to identify the proportion of females and each speaker's profession based on conference conveners, program documents, or internet research. Three international (European Society of Intensive Care Medicine, International Symposium on Intensive Care and Emergency Medicine, Society of Critical Care Medicine) and two national (Critical Care Canada Forum, U.K. Intensive Care Society State of the Art Meeting) annual critical care conferences held between 2010 and 2016. Female faculty speakers. None. Male speakers outnumbered female speakers at all five conferences, in all 7 years. Overall, women represented 5-31% of speakers, and female physicians represented 5-26% of speakers. Nursing and allied health professional faculty represented 0-25% of speakers; in general, more than 50% of allied health professionals were women. Over the 7 years, Society of Critical Care Medicine had the highest representation of female (27% overall) and nursing/allied health professional (16-25%) speakers; notably, male physicians substantially outnumbered female physicians in all years (62-70% vs 10-19%, respectively). Women's representation on conference program committees ranged from 0% to 40%, with Society of Critical Care Medicine having the highest representation of women (26-40%). The female proportions of speakers, physician speakers, and program committee members increased significantly over time at the Society of Critical Care Medicine and U.K. Intensive Care Society State of the Art Meeting conferences (p gap at critical care conferences, with male faculty outnumbering female faculty. This gap is more marked among physician speakers than those speakers representing nursing and allied health professionals. Several organizational strategies can address this gender gap.

  3. On the improvement of speaker diarization by detecting overlapped speech

    OpenAIRE

    Hernando Pericás, Francisco Javier; Hernando Pericás, Francisco Javier

    2010-01-01

    Simultaneous speech in meeting environment is responsible for a certain amount of errors caused by standard speaker diarization systems. We are presenting an overlap detection system for far-field data based on spectral and spatial features, where the spatial features obtained on different microphone pairs are fused by means of principal component analysis. Detected overlap segments are applied for speaker diarization in order to increase the purity of speaker clusters an...

  4. Speaker-dependent Multipitch Tracking Using Deep Neural Networks

    Science.gov (United States)

    2015-01-01

    sentences spoken by each of 34 speakers (18 male, 16 female). Two male and two female speakers (No. 1, 2, 18, 20, same as [30]), denoted as MA1, MA2 ...Engineering Technical Report #12, 2015 Speaker Pairs MA1- MA2 MA1-FE1 MA1-FE2 MA2 -FE1 MA2 -FE2 FE1-FE2 E T ot al 0 10 20 30 40 50 60 70 80 Jin and Wang Hu and...Pitch 1 Estimated Pitch 2 (d) Figure 6: Multipitch tracking results on a test mixture (pbbv6n and priv3n) for the MA1- MA2 speaker pair. (a) Groundtruth

  5. Learning speaker-specific characteristics with a deep neural architecture.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Ke; Salman, Ahmad

    2011-11-01

    Speech signals convey various yet mixed information ranging from linguistic to speaker-specific information. However, most of acoustic representations characterize all different kinds of information as whole, which could hinder either a speech or a speaker recognition (SR) system from producing a better performance. In this paper, we propose a novel deep neural architecture (DNA) especially for learning speaker-specific characteristics from mel-frequency cepstral coefficients, an acoustic representation commonly used in both speech recognition and SR, which results in a speaker-specific overcomplete representation. In order to learn intrinsic speaker-specific characteristics, we come up with an objective function consisting of contrastive losses in terms of speaker similarity/dissimilarity and data reconstruction losses used as regularization to normalize the interference of non-speaker-related information. Moreover, we employ a hybrid learning strategy for learning parameters of the deep neural networks: i.e., local yet greedy layerwise unsupervised pretraining for initialization and global supervised learning for the ultimate discriminative goal. With four Linguistic Data Consortium (LDC) benchmarks and two non-English corpora, we demonstrate that our overcomplete representation is robust in characterizing various speakers, no matter whether their utterances have been used in training our DNA, and highly insensitive to text and languages spoken. Extensive comparative studies suggest that our approach yields favorite results in speaker verification and segmentation. Finally, we discuss several issues concerning our proposed approach.

  6. Comparison of Diarization Tools for Building Speaker Database

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eva Kiktova

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available This paper compares open source diarization toolkits (LIUM, DiarTK, ALIZE-Lia_Ral, which were designed for extraction of speaker identity from audio records without any prior information about the analysed data. The comparative study of used diarization tools was performed for three different types of analysed data (broadcast news - BN and TV shows. Corresponding values of achieved DER measure are presented here. The automatic speaker diarization system developed by LIUM was able to identified speech segments belonging to speakers at very good level. Its segmentation outputs can be used to build a speaker database.

  7. Speaker Clustering for a Mixture of Singing and Reading (Preprint)

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-03-01

    diarization [2, 3] which answers the ques- tion of ”who spoke when?” is a combination of speaker segmentation and clustering. Although it is possible to...focuses on speaker clustering, the techniques developed here can be applied to speaker diarization . For the remainder of this paper, the term ”speech...and retrieval,” Proceedings of the IEEE, vol. 88, 2000. [2] S. Tranter and D. Reynolds, “An overview of automatic speaker diarization systems,” IEEE

  8. Broadband availability in metropolitan and non-metropolitan Pennsylvania

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lawrence E. Wood

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available Over the past few years having a broadband connection has become essential for many Internet activities. As broadband increases in importance, it becomes imperative to assess how its use and availability may vary, especially in relation to issues such as geographic location. For rural areas in particular, the availability of broadband service is especially important. This research assesses broadband service availability in rural areas of Pennsylvania, USA. In particular, it examines the extent to which Digital Subscriber Line (DSL and broadband cable modem services are being deployed throughout rural Pennsylvania. It compares this deployment with the availability of such services in the state’s urban and metropolitan areas. The results of this research suggest that there is a “digital divide” in terms of broadband availability between rural and urban areas of Pennsylvania. However, this “divide” is perhaps not as wide as might be expected. Thus, as broadband is becoming increasingly available in rural areas of the U.S. and throughout much of the rest of the world, this research concludes that while research must remain vigilant in terms of assessing advanced telecommunications availability in rural areas, future research should also be sure to focus on how such technologies can be used to promote economic and social concerns, including in relation to building online networks and diminishing social and professional isolation in rural areas.

  9. Affective processing in bilingual speakers: disembodied cognition?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pavlenko, Aneta

    2012-01-01

    A recent study by Keysar, Hayakawa, and An (2012) suggests that "thinking in a foreign language" may reduce decision biases because a foreign language provides a greater emotional distance than a native tongue. The possibility of such "disembodied" cognition is of great interest for theories of affect and cognition and for many other areas of psychological theory and practice, from clinical and forensic psychology to marketing, but first this claim needs to be properly evaluated. The purpose of this review is to examine the findings of clinical, introspective, cognitive, psychophysiological, and neuroimaging studies of affective processing in bilingual speakers in order to identify converging patterns of results, to evaluate the claim about "disembodied cognition," and to outline directions for future inquiry. The findings to date reveal two interrelated processing effects. First-language (L1) advantage refers to increased automaticity of affective processing in the L1 and heightened electrodermal reactivity to L1 emotion-laden words. Second-language (L2) advantage refers to decreased automaticity of affective processing in the L2, which reduces interference effects and lowers electrodermal reactivity to negative emotional stimuli. The differences in L1 and L2 affective processing suggest that in some bilingual speakers, in particular late bilinguals and foreign language users, respective languages may be differentially embodied, with the later learned language processed semantically but not affectively. This difference accounts for the reduction of framing biases in L2 processing in the study by Keysar et al. (2012). The follow-up discussion identifies the limits of the findings to date in terms of participant populations, levels of processing, and types of stimuli, puts forth alternative explanations of the documented effects, and articulates predictions to be tested in future research.

  10. Differences in Sickness Allowance Receipt between Swedish Speakers and Finnish Speakers in Finland

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kaarina S. Reini

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available Previous research has documented lower disability retirement and mortality rates of Swedish speakers as compared with Finnish speakers in Finland. This paper is the first to compare the two language groups with regard to the receipt of sickness allowance, which is an objective health measure that reflects a less severe poor health condition. Register-based data covering the years 1988-2011 are used. We estimate logistic regression models with generalized estimating equations to account for repeated observations at the individual level. We find that Swedish-speaking men have approximately 30 percent lower odds of receiving sickness allowance than Finnish-speaking men, whereas the difference in women is about 15 percent. In correspondence with previous research on all-cause mortality at working ages, we find no language-group difference in sickness allowance receipt in the socially most successful subgroup of the population.

  11. Metropolitan Optical Networks 1995 Annual Report

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kristensen, Martin; Jouanno, Jean-Marc; Malone, Kevin

    1996-01-01

    The annual report describes the research carried out in the ACTS-project METON (Metropolitan Optical Networks) in 1995. L.M. Ericsson is prime contractor and 12 partners including DTU is involved in the project.......The annual report describes the research carried out in the ACTS-project METON (Metropolitan Optical Networks) in 1995. L.M. Ericsson is prime contractor and 12 partners including DTU is involved in the project....

  12. Metropolitan Optical Networks 1996 Annual Report

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kristensen, Martin; Jouanno, Jean-Marc; Malone, Kevin

    1997-01-01

    The report desribes the reasearch carried out in the ACTS-project METON (Metropolitan Optical Networks) in 1996. L.M. Ericsson is prime contractor and 12 partners are involved in the project including DTU, i.e. EMI and MIC.......The report desribes the reasearch carried out in the ACTS-project METON (Metropolitan Optical Networks) in 1996. L.M. Ericsson is prime contractor and 12 partners are involved in the project including DTU, i.e. EMI and MIC....

  13. The Status of Native Speaker Intuitions in a Polylectal Grammar.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Debose, Charles E.

    A study of one speaker's intuitions about and performance in Black English is presented with relation to Saussure's "langue-parole" dichotomy. Native speakers of a language have intuitions about the static synchronic entities although the data of their speaking is variable and panchronic. These entities are in a diglossic relationship to each…

  14. Optimization of multilayer neural network parameters for speaker recognition

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tovarek, Jaromir; Partila, Pavol; Rozhon, Jan; Voznak, Miroslav; Skapa, Jan; Uhrin, Dominik; Chmelikova, Zdenka

    2016-05-01

    This article discusses the impact of multilayer neural network parameters for speaker identification. The main task of speaker identification is to find a specific person in the known set of speakers. It means that the voice of an unknown speaker (wanted person) belongs to a group of reference speakers from the voice database. One of the requests was to develop the text-independent system, which means to classify wanted person regardless of content and language. Multilayer neural network has been used for speaker identification in this research. Artificial neural network (ANN) needs to set parameters like activation function of neurons, steepness of activation functions, learning rate, the maximum number of iterations and a number of neurons in the hidden and output layers. ANN accuracy and validation time are directly influenced by the parameter settings. Different roles require different settings. Identification accuracy and ANN validation time were evaluated with the same input data but different parameter settings. The goal was to find parameters for the neural network with the highest precision and shortest validation time. Input data of neural networks are a Mel-frequency cepstral coefficients (MFCC). These parameters describe the properties of the vocal tract. Audio samples were recorded for all speakers in a laboratory environment. Training, testing and validation data set were split into 70, 15 and 15 %. The result of the research described in this article is different parameter setting for the multilayer neural network for four speakers.

  15. Speaker and Observer Perceptions of Physical Tension during Stuttering.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tichenor, Seth; Leslie, Paula; Shaiman, Susan; Yaruss, J Scott

    2017-01-01

    Speech-language pathologists routinely assess physical tension during evaluation of those who stutter. If speakers experience tension that is not visible to clinicians, then judgments of severity may be inaccurate. This study addressed this potential discrepancy by comparing judgments of tension by people who stutter and expert clinicians to determine if clinicians could accurately identify the speakers' experience of physical tension. Ten adults who stutter were audio-video recorded in two speaking samples. Two board-certified specialists in fluency evaluated the samples using the Stuttering Severity Instrument-4 and a checklist adapted for this study. Speakers rated their tension using the same forms, and then discussed their experiences in a qualitative interview so that themes related to physical tension could be identified. The degree of tension reported by speakers was higher than that observed by specialists. Tension in parts of the body that were less visible to the observer (chest, abdomen, throat) was reported more by speakers than by specialists. The thematic analysis revealed that speakers' experience of tension changes over time and that these changes may be related to speakers' acceptance of stuttering. The lack of agreement between speaker and specialist perceptions of tension suggests that using self-reports is a necessary component for supporting the accurate diagnosis of tension in stuttering. © 2018 S. Karger AG, Basel.

  16. Request Strategies in Everyday Interactions of Persian and English Speakers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shiler Yazdanfar

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available Cross-cultural studies of speech acts in different linguistic contexts might have interesting implications for language researchers and practitioners. Drawing on the Speech Act Theory, the present study aimed at conducting a comparative study of request speech act in Persian and English. Specifically, the study endeavored to explore the request strategies used in daily interactions of Persian and English speakers based on directness level and supportive moves. To this end, English and Persian TV series were observed and requestive utterances were transcribed. The utterances were then categorized based on Blum-Kulka and Olshtain’s Cross-Cultural Study of Speech Act Realization Pattern (CCSARP for directness level and internal and external mitigation devises. According to the results, although speakers of both languages opted for the direct level as their most frequently used strategy in their daily interactions, the English speakers used more conventionally indirect strategies than the Persian speakers did, and the Persian speakers used more non-conventionally indirect strategies than the English speakers did. Furthermore, the analyzed data revealed the fact that American English speakers use more mitigation devices in their daily interactions with friends and family members than Persian speakers.

  17. Visual speaker gender affects vowel identification in Danish

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Larsen, Charlotte; Tøndering, John

    2013-01-01

    The experiment examined the effect of visual speaker gender on the vowel perception of 20 native Danish-speaking subjects. Auditory stimuli consisting of a continuum between /muːlə/ ‘muzzle’ and /moːlə/ ‘pier’ generated using TANDEM-STRAIGHT matched with video clips of a female and a male speaker...

  18. Dysprosody and Stimulus Effects in Cantonese Speakers with Parkinson's Disease

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ma, Joan K.-Y.; Whitehill, Tara; Cheung, Katherine S.-K.

    2010-01-01

    Background: Dysprosody is a common feature in speakers with hypokinetic dysarthria. However, speech prosody varies across different types of speech materials. This raises the question of what is the most appropriate speech material for the evaluation of dysprosody. Aims: To characterize the prosodic impairment in Cantonese speakers with…

  19. Teaching Portuguese to Spanish Speakers: A Case for Trilingualism

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carvalho, Ana M.; Freire, Juliana Luna; da Silva, Antonio J. B.

    2010-01-01

    Portuguese is the sixth-most-spoken native language in the world, with approximately 240,000,000 speakers. Within the United States, there is a growing demand for K-12 language programs to engage the community of Portuguese heritage speakers. According to the 2000 U.S. census, 85,000 school-age children speak Portuguese at home. As a result, more…

  20. Profiles of an Acquisition Generation: Nontraditional Heritage Speakers of Spanish

    Science.gov (United States)

    DeFeo, Dayna Jean

    2018-01-01

    Though definitions vary, the literature on heritage speakers of Spanish identifies two primary attributes: a linguistic and cultural connection to the language. This article profiles four Anglo college students who grew up in bilingual or Spanish-dominant communities in the Southwest who self-identified as Spanish heritage speakers, citing…

  1. Progress in the AMIDA speaker diarization system for meeting data

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Leeuwen, D.A. van; Konečný, M.

    2008-01-01

    In this paper we describe the AMIDA speaker dizarization system as it was submitted to the NIST Rich Transcription evaluation 2007 for conference room data. This is done in the context of the history of this system and other speaker diarization systems. One of the goals of our system is to have as

  2. A hybrid generative-discriminative approach to speaker diarization

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Noulas, A.K.; van Kasteren, T.; Kröse, B.J.A.

    2008-01-01

    In this paper we present a sound probabilistic approach to speaker diarization. We use a hybrid framework where a distribution over the number of speakers at each point of a multimodal stream is estimated with a discriminative model. The output of this process is used as input in a generative model

  3. Guest Speakers in School-Based Sexuality Education

    Science.gov (United States)

    McRee, Annie-Laurie; Madsen, Nikki; Eisenberg, Marla E.

    2014-01-01

    This study, using data from a statewide survey (n = 332), examined teachers' practices regarding the inclusion of guest speakers to cover sexuality content. More than half of teachers (58%) included guest speakers. In multivariate analyses, teachers who taught high school, had professional preparation in health education, or who received…

  4. Internal request modification by first and second language speakers ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    This study focuses on the question of whether Luganda English speakers would negatively transfer into their English speech the use of syntactic and lexical down graders resulting in pragmatic failure. Data were collected from Luganda and Luganda English speakers by means of a Discourse Completion Test (DCT) ...

  5. (En)countering native-speakerism global perspectives

    CERN Document Server

    Holliday, Adrian; Swan, Anne

    2015-01-01

    The book addresses the issue of native-speakerism, an ideology based on the assumption that 'native speakers' of English have a special claim to the language itself, through critical qualitative studies of the lived experiences of practising teachers and students in a range of scenarios.

  6. Who spoke when? Audio-based speaker location estimation for diarization

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Dadvar, M.

    2011-01-01

    Speaker diarization is the process which detects active speakers and groups those speech signals which has been uttered by the same speaker. Generally we can find two main applications for speaker diarization. Automatic Speech Recognition systems make use of the speaker homogeneous clusters to adapt

  7. The Communication of Public Speaking Anxiety: Perceptions of Asian and American Speakers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martini, Marianne; And Others

    1992-01-01

    Finds that U.S. audiences perceive Asian speakers to have more speech anxiety than U.S. speakers, even though Asian speakers do not self-report higher anxiety levels. Confirms that speech state anxiety is not communicated effectively between speakers and audiences for Asian or U.S. speakers. (SR)

  8. Data-Model Relationship in Text-Independent Speaker Recognition

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stapert Robert

    2005-01-01

    Full Text Available Text-independent speaker recognition systems such as those based on Gaussian mixture models (GMMs do not include time sequence information (TSI within the model itself. The level of importance of TSI in speaker recognition is an interesting question and one addressed in this paper. Recent works has shown that the utilisation of higher-level information such as idiolect, pronunciation, and prosodics can be useful in reducing speaker recognition error rates. In accordance with these developments, the aim of this paper is to show that as more data becomes available, the basic GMM can be enhanced by utilising TSI, even in a text-independent mode. This paper presents experimental work incorporating TSI into the conventional GMM. The resulting system, known as the segmental mixture model (SMM, embeds dynamic time warping (DTW into a GMM framework. Results are presented on the 2000-speaker SpeechDat Welsh database which show improved speaker recognition performance with the SMM.

  9. Speakers of different languages process the visual world differently.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chabal, Sarah; Marian, Viorica

    2015-06-01

    Language and vision are highly interactive. Here we show that people activate language when they perceive the visual world, and that this language information impacts how speakers of different languages focus their attention. For example, when searching for an item (e.g., clock) in the same visual display, English and Spanish speakers look at different objects. Whereas English speakers searching for the clock also look at a cloud, Spanish speakers searching for the clock also look at a gift, because the Spanish names for gift (regalo) and clock (reloj) overlap phonologically. These different looking patterns emerge despite an absence of direct language input, showing that linguistic information is automatically activated by visual scene processing. We conclude that the varying linguistic information available to speakers of different languages affects visual perception, leading to differences in how the visual world is processed. (c) 2015 APA, all rights reserved).

  10. Aspects of Land Take in the Metropolitan Area of Naples

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Giuseppe Mazzeo

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available Land take is a phenomenon of great concern nowadays because of the large number of its negative impacts regarding biological, economic and social balance. In Italy, the development of urban and other artificial land has been irreversibly transforming a non-renewable resource such as soil, regardless the almost constant population rate, with different speed depending of the region considered. The aim of this paper is to analyze the phenomenon in the metropolitan area of Naples, which is an area highly affected by territorial aggression of human matrix. The data used are both by the Institute for Environmental Protection and Research (ISPRA Report 2015 on the usage of the land and by ISTAT relating to the resident population up to the 1st of January 2015 and the extension of land for agricultural use (Census 2010. The mathematical combination of this data creates a new indicator that can be referred to as “residual land”; this residual area is of great extension with many different characteristics and it could represent the area where the phenomenon of land take most occurs. The identification, measurement and analysis of “residual land” provide new insights on the evolution of land take and this new indicator can represent a critical element to work on to prevent future land transformation and protect natural and agricultural areas within the Italian context.

  11. Is the perception of dysphonia severity language-dependent? A comparison of French and Italian voice assessments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ghio, Alain; Cantarella, Giovanna; Weisz, Frédérique; Robert, Danièle; Woisard, Virginie; Fussi, Franco; Giovanni, Antoine; Baracca, Giovanna

    2015-04-01

    In this cross-language study, six Italian and six French voice experts evaluated perceptually the speech of 27 Italian and 40 French patients with dysphonia to determine if there were differences based on native language. French and Italian voice specialists agreed substantially in their evaluations of the overall grade of dysphonia and moderately concerning roughness and breathiness. No statistically significant effects were found related to the language of the speakers with the exception of breathiness, a finding that was interpreted as being due to different voice pathologies in the patient groups. It was concluded that the perception of the overall grade of dysphonia and breathiness is not language-dependent, whereas the significant difference in the perception of roughness may be related to a perception/adaption process.

  12. Semantic memory: a feature-based analysis and new norms for Italian.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Montefinese, Maria; Ambrosini, Ettore; Fairfield, Beth; Mammarella, Nicola

    2013-06-01

    Semantic norms for properties produced by native speakers are valuable tools for researchers interested in the structure of semantic memory and in category-specific semantic deficits in individuals following brain damage. The aims of this study were threefold. First, we sought to extend existing semantic norms by adopting an empirical approach to category (Exp. 1) and concept (Exp. 2) selection, in order to obtain a more representative set of semantic memory features. Second, we extensively outlined a new set of semantic production norms collected from Italian native speakers for 120 artifactual and natural basic-level concepts, using numerous measures and statistics following a feature-listing task (Exp. 3b). Finally, we aimed to create a new publicly accessible database, since only a few existing databases are publicly available online.

  13. Studies on inter-speaker variability in speech and its application in ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    tic representation of vowel realizations by different speakers. ... in regional background, education level and gender of speaker. A more ...... formal maps such as bilinear transform and its generalizations for speaker normalization. Since.

  14. [Italian Thesaurus of Bioethics, TIB].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Navarini, Claudia; Poltronieri, Elisabetta

    2004-01-01

    The article aims at illustrating the characteristics and functions of a monolingual thesaurus, focusing on the Italian Thesaurus of Bioethics (Thesaurus Italiano di Bioetica, TIB) the controlled vocabulary used to index and retrieve documents within SIBIL (Italian Online Bioethics Information System). TIB includes controlled terms (descriptors) translated from the Bioethics Thesaurus adopted by the Kennedy Institute of Ethics of the Georgetown University of Washington and revised according to the Italian context of study and scientific debate in the field of bioethics. The overall amount of TIB terms consists in over 1600 headings. Methods to link thesaurus terms hierarchically, by association and by showing synonyms as recommended in ISO standards are applied with reference to descriptors drawn from TIB. Future plans to make the English version of TIB available online within European networks are also illustrated, aiming at spreading information relating to bioethics at an international level.

  15. Improving Speaker Recognition by Biometric Voice Deconstruction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mazaira-Fernandez, Luis Miguel; Álvarez-Marquina, Agustín; Gómez-Vilda, Pedro

    2015-01-01

    Person identification, especially in critical environments, has always been a subject of great interest. However, it has gained a new dimension in a world threatened by a new kind of terrorism that uses social networks (e.g., YouTube) to broadcast its message. In this new scenario, classical identification methods (such as fingerprints or face recognition) have been forcedly replaced by alternative biometric characteristics such as voice, as sometimes this is the only feature available. The present study benefits from the advances achieved during last years in understanding and modeling voice production. The paper hypothesizes that a gender-dependent characterization of speakers combined with the use of a set of features derived from the components, resulting from the deconstruction of the voice into its glottal source and vocal tract estimates, will enhance recognition rates when compared to classical approaches. A general description about the main hypothesis and the methodology followed to extract the gender-dependent extended biometric parameters is given. Experimental validation is carried out both on a highly controlled acoustic condition database, and on a mobile phone network recorded under non-controlled acoustic conditions. PMID:26442245

  16. ITALIAN AND ITALIAN AMERICAN IDENTITY: A VISUAL APPROACH

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    User

    It is flexible without overall plan and contains spaces .... of Symbolic Capital, defined by Bourdieu as “The collection of luxury goods attesting to the taste and distinction of the owner” (1977: 188), ... Since “the most successful ideological effects are those which have no words ..... a market dominated by non-Italian proprietors.

  17. Human and automatic speaker recognition over telecommunication channels

    CERN Document Server

    Fernández Gallardo, Laura

    2016-01-01

    This work addresses the evaluation of the human and the automatic speaker recognition performances under different channel distortions caused by bandwidth limitation, codecs, and electro-acoustic user interfaces, among other impairments. Its main contribution is the demonstration of the benefits of communication channels of extended bandwidth, together with an insight into how speaker-specific characteristics of speech are preserved through different transmissions. It provides sufficient motivation for considering speaker recognition as a criterion for the migration from narrowband to enhanced bandwidths, such as wideband and super-wideband.

  18. Orthography-Induced Length Contrasts in the Second Language Phonological Systems of L2 Speakers of English: Evidence from Minimal Pairs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bassetti, Bene; Sokolović-Perović, Mirjana; Mairano, Paolo; Cerni, Tania

    2018-06-01

    Research shows that the orthographic forms ("spellings") of second language (L2) words affect speech production in L2 speakers. This study investigated whether English orthographic forms lead L2 speakers to produce English homophonic word pairs as phonological minimal pairs. Targets were 33 orthographic minimal pairs, that is to say homophonic words that would be pronounced as phonological minimal pairs if orthography affects pronunciation. Word pairs contained the same target sound spelled with one letter or two, such as the /n/ in finish and Finnish (both /'fɪnɪʃ/ in Standard British English). To test for effects of length and type of L2 exposure, we compared Italian instructed learners of English, Italian-English late bilinguals with lengthy naturalistic exposure, and English natives. A reading-aloud task revealed that Italian speakers of English L2 produce two English homophonic words as a minimal pair distinguished by different consonant or vowel length, for instance producing the target /'fɪnɪʃ/ with a short [n] or a long [nː] to reflect the number of consonant letters in the spelling of the words finish and Finnish. Similar effects were found on the pronunciation of vowels, for instance in the orthographic pair scene-seen (both /siːn/). Naturalistic exposure did not reduce orthographic effects, as effects were found both in learners and in late bilinguals living in an English-speaking environment. It appears that the orthographic form of L2 words can result in the establishment of a phonological contrast that does not exist in the target language. Results have implications for models of L2 phonological development.

  19. Metropolitan planning from an international comparative perspective

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Galland, Daniel; Grønning, Marius

    2016-01-01

    policies, and thus also to the instrumental orientation within planning. A challenge stemming from this comparison is to understand how similar policies are implemented at a strategic and metropolitan level. Within the institutional framework of Copenhagen, the problem with the Finger Plan directive might...... (Faludi & van der Valk, 1994), thus integrating the archetypal land-use character of municipal plans and the strategic and growth-oriented pursuit of regional plans. A number of questions may be deduced: How explicit is the metropolitan scale? How local and how regional is the knowledge basis? Within......Over the last few years new practices of spatial strategy making at different planning scales have emerged. At the metropolitan level, such spatial strategies are reminiscent of national and supranational competitive strategies (e.g. EU policies) as well as ratifications of international...

  20. The Search of a New Logic of Public Administration Reforms: The Case of Metropolitan Areas in Italy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Renato Ruffini

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available The aim of this paper is to formulate some recommendations for the currently undergoing reform of Italian metropolitan areas. This case is particularly relevant since it clearly represents how, even if expected by law, reforms might not happen on the implementation side. We draw the recommendations from some basic assumptions of the collaborative governance model. Recommendations deal with the development of a systemic, collaborative and leadership oriented view of reforms. Indeed, reforms should be intended not only as a legislative process, but also as a complex change management process characterized by the decisive role of the human factor.

  1. Fundamental frequency characteristics of Jordanian Arabic speakers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Natour, Yaser S; Wingate, Judith M

    2009-09-01

    This study is the first in a series of investigations designed to test the acoustic characteristics of the normal Arabic voice. The subjects were three hundred normal Jordanian Arabic speakers (100 adult males, 100 adult females, and 100 children). The subjects produced a sustained phonation of the vowel /a:/ and stated their complete names (i.e. first, second, third and surname) using a carrier phrase. The samples were analyzed using the Multi Dimensional Voice Program (MDVP). Fundamental frequency (F0) from the /a:/ and speaking fundamental frequency (SF0) from the sentence were analyzed. Results revealed a significant difference of both F0 and SF0 values among adult Jordanian Arabic-speaking males (F0=131.34Hz +/- 18.65, SF0=137.45 +/- 18.93), females (F0=231.13Hz +/- 20.86, SF0=230.84 +/- 16.50) and children (F0=270.93Hz +/- 20.01, SF0=278.04 +/- 32.07). Comparison with other ethnicities indicated that F0 values of adult Jordanian Arabic-speaking males and females are generally consistent with adult Caucasian and African-American values. However, for Jordanian Arabic-speaking children, a higher trend in F0 values was present than their Western counterparts. SF0 values for adult Jordanian Arabic-speaking males are generally consistent with the adult Caucasian male SF0 values. However, SF0 values of adult Jordanian-speaking females and children were relatively higher than the reported Western values. It is recommended that speech-language pathologists in Arabic-speaking countries, Jordan in specific, utilize the new data provided (F0 and SF0) when evaluating and/or treating Arabic-speaking patients. Due to its cross-linguistic variability, SF0 emerged as a preferred measurement when conducting cross-cultural comparisons of voice features.

  2. Education and Italian Regional Development

    Science.gov (United States)

    Di Liberto, Adriana

    2008-01-01

    In this paper, we study the connection between growth and human capital in a convergence regression for the panel of Italian regions. We include measures of average primary, secondary and tertiary education. We find that increased education seems to contribute to growth only in the South. Decomposing total schooling into its three constituent…

  3. Lymphogranuloma venereum: the Italian experience

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Cusini, M.; Boneschi, V.; Arancio, L.; Ramoni, S.; Venegoni, L.; Gaiani, F.; de Vries, H.J.C.

    2009-01-01

    An epidemic of lymphogranuloma venereum (LGV) has been described in men who have sex with men (MSM) in the western world, particularly in western Europe. The first Italian case was reported by the authors in 2006, and up to March 2008 there have been 13 symptomatic cases, all in MSM. Ten cases had

  4. Cost-Sensitive Learning for Emotion Robust Speaker Recognition

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dongdong Li

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available In the field of information security, voice is one of the most important parts in biometrics. Especially, with the development of voice communication through the Internet or telephone system, huge voice data resources are accessed. In speaker recognition, voiceprint can be applied as the unique password for the user to prove his/her identity. However, speech with various emotions can cause an unacceptably high error rate and aggravate the performance of speaker recognition system. This paper deals with this problem by introducing a cost-sensitive learning technology to reweight the probability of test affective utterances in the pitch envelop level, which can enhance the robustness in emotion-dependent speaker recognition effectively. Based on that technology, a new architecture of recognition system as well as its components is proposed in this paper. The experiment conducted on the Mandarin Affective Speech Corpus shows that an improvement of 8% identification rate over the traditional speaker recognition is achieved.

  5. Cost-sensitive learning for emotion robust speaker recognition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Dongdong; Yang, Yingchun; Dai, Weihui

    2014-01-01

    In the field of information security, voice is one of the most important parts in biometrics. Especially, with the development of voice communication through the Internet or telephone system, huge voice data resources are accessed. In speaker recognition, voiceprint can be applied as the unique password for the user to prove his/her identity. However, speech with various emotions can cause an unacceptably high error rate and aggravate the performance of speaker recognition system. This paper deals with this problem by introducing a cost-sensitive learning technology to reweight the probability of test affective utterances in the pitch envelop level, which can enhance the robustness in emotion-dependent speaker recognition effectively. Based on that technology, a new architecture of recognition system as well as its components is proposed in this paper. The experiment conducted on the Mandarin Affective Speech Corpus shows that an improvement of 8% identification rate over the traditional speaker recognition is achieved.

  6. Joint Single-Channel Speech Separation and Speaker Identification

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Mowlaee, Pejman; Saeidi, Rahim; Tan, Zheng-Hua

    2010-01-01

    In this paper, we propose a closed loop system to improve the performance of single-channel speech separation in a speaker independent scenario. The system is composed of two interconnected blocks: a separation block and a speaker identiſcation block. The improvement is accomplished by incorporat......In this paper, we propose a closed loop system to improve the performance of single-channel speech separation in a speaker independent scenario. The system is composed of two interconnected blocks: a separation block and a speaker identiſcation block. The improvement is accomplished...... enhances the quality of the separated output signals. To assess the improvements, the results are reported in terms of PESQ for both target and masked signals....

  7. a sociophonetic study of young nigerian english speakers

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Oladipupo

    between male and female speakers in boundary consonant deletion, (F(1, .... speech perception (Foulkes 2006, Clopper & Pisoni, 2005, Thomas 2002). ... in Nigeria, and had had the privilege of travelling to Europe and the Americas for the.

  8. Forensic Speaker Recognition Law Enforcement and Counter-Terrorism

    CERN Document Server

    Patil, Hemant

    2012-01-01

    Forensic Speaker Recognition: Law Enforcement and Counter-Terrorism is an anthology of the research findings of 35 speaker recognition experts from around the world. The volume provides a multidimensional view of the complex science involved in determining whether a suspect’s voice truly matches forensic speech samples, collected by law enforcement and counter-terrorism agencies, that are associated with the commission of a terrorist act or other crimes. While addressing such topics as the challenges of forensic case work, handling speech signal degradation, analyzing features of speaker recognition to optimize voice verification system performance, and designing voice applications that meet the practical needs of law enforcement and counter-terrorism agencies, this material all sounds a common theme: how the rigors of forensic utility are demanding new levels of excellence in all aspects of speaker recognition. The contributors are among the most eminent scientists in speech engineering and signal process...

  9. Speaker Linking and Applications using Non-Parametric Hashing Methods

    Science.gov (United States)

    2016-09-08

    nonparametric estimate of a multivariate density function,” The Annals of Math- ematical Statistics , vol. 36, no. 3, pp. 1049–1051, 1965. [9] E. A. Patrick...Speaker Linking and Applications using Non-Parametric Hashing Methods† Douglas Sturim and William M. Campbell MIT Lincoln Laboratory, Lexington, MA...with many approaches [1, 2]. For this paper, we focus on using i-vectors [2], but the methods apply to any embedding. For the task of speaker QBE and

  10. Electrophysiology of subject-verb agreement mediated by speakers' gender.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hanulíková, Adriana; Carreiras, Manuel

    2015-01-01

    An important property of speech is that it explicitly conveys features of a speaker's identity such as age or gender. This event-related potential (ERP) study examined the effects of social information provided by a speaker's gender, i.e., the conceptual representation of gender, on subject-verb agreement. Despite numerous studies on agreement, little is known about syntactic computations generated by speaker characteristics extracted from the acoustic signal. Slovak is well suited to investigate this issue because it is a morphologically rich language in which agreement involves features for number, case, and gender. Grammaticality of a sentence can be evaluated by checking a speaker's gender as conveyed by his/her voice. We examined how conceptual information about speaker gender, which is not syntactic but rather social and pragmatic in nature, is interpreted for the computation of agreement patterns. ERP responses to verbs disagreeing with the speaker's gender (e.g., a sentence including a masculine verbal inflection spoken by a female person 'the neighbors were upset because I (∗)stoleMASC plums') elicited a larger early posterior negativity compared to correct sentences. When the agreement was purely syntactic and did not depend on the speaker's gender, a disagreement between a formally marked subject and the verb inflection (e.g., the womanFEM (∗)stoleMASC plums) resulted in a larger P600 preceded by a larger anterior negativity compared to the control sentences. This result is in line with proposals according to which the recruitment of non-syntactic information such as the gender of the speaker results in N400-like effects, while formally marked syntactic features lead to structural integration as reflected in a LAN/P600 complex.

  11. FPGA Implementation for GMM-Based Speaker Identification

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Phaklen EhKan

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available In today's society, highly accurate personal identification systems are required. Passwords or pin numbers can be forgotten or forged and are no longer considered to offer a high level of security. The use of biological features, biometrics, is becoming widely accepted as the next level for security systems. Biometric-based speaker identification is a method of identifying persons from their voice. Speaker-specific characteristics exist in speech signals due to different speakers having different resonances of the vocal tract. These differences can be exploited by extracting feature vectors such as Mel-Frequency Cepstral Coefficients (MFCCs from the speech signal. A well-known statistical modelling process, the Gaussian Mixture Model (GMM, then models the distribution of each speaker's MFCCs in a multidimensional acoustic space. The GMM-based speaker identification system has features that make it promising for hardware acceleration. This paper describes the hardware implementation for classification of a text-independent GMM-based speaker identification system. The aim was to produce a system that can perform simultaneous identification of large numbers of voice streams in real time. This has important potential applications in security and in automated call centre applications. A speedup factor of ninety was achieved compared to a software implementation on a standard PC.

  12. Understanding speaker attitudes from prosody by adults with Parkinson's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Monetta, Laura; Cheang, Henry S; Pell, Marc D

    2008-09-01

    The ability to interpret vocal (prosodic) cues during social interactions can be disrupted by Parkinson's disease, with notable effects on how emotions are understood from speech. This study investigated whether PD patients who have emotional prosody deficits exhibit further difficulties decoding the attitude of a speaker from prosody. Vocally inflected but semantically nonsensical 'pseudo-utterances' were presented to listener groups with and without PD in two separate rating tasks. Task I required participants to rate how confident a speaker sounded from their voice and Task 2 required listeners to rate how polite the speaker sounded for a comparable set of pseudo-utterances. The results showed that PD patients were significantly less able than HC participants to use prosodic cues to differentiate intended levels of speaker confidence in speech, although the patients could accurately detect the politelimpolite attitude of the speaker from prosody in most cases. Our data suggest that many PD patients fail to use vocal cues to effectively infer a speaker's emotions as well as certain attitudes in speech such as confidence, consistent with the idea that the basal ganglia play a role in the meaningful processing of prosodic sequences in spoken language (Pell & Leonard, 2003).

  13. A fundamental residue pitch perception bias for tone language speakers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Petitti, Elizabeth

    A complex tone composed of only higher-order harmonics typically elicits a pitch percept equivalent to the tone's missing fundamental frequency (f0). When judging the direction of residue pitch change between two such tones, however, listeners may have completely opposite perceptual experiences depending on whether they are biased to perceive changes based on the overall spectrum or the missing f0 (harmonic spacing). Individual differences in residue pitch change judgments are reliable and have been associated with musical experience and functional neuroanatomy. Tone languages put greater pitch processing demands on their speakers than non-tone languages, and we investigated whether these lifelong differences in linguistic pitch processing affect listeners' bias for residue pitch. We asked native tone language speakers and native English speakers to perform a pitch judgment task for two tones with missing fundamental frequencies. Given tone pairs with ambiguous pitch changes, listeners were asked to judge the direction of pitch change, where the direction of their response indicated whether they attended to the overall spectrum (exhibiting a spectral bias) or the missing f0 (exhibiting a fundamental bias). We found that tone language speakers are significantly more likely to perceive pitch changes based on the missing f0 than English speakers. These results suggest that tone-language speakers' privileged experience with linguistic pitch fundamentally tunes their basic auditory processing.

  14. Changing Housing Patterns in Metropolitan Washington

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grier, George; Grier, Eunice

    1975-01-01

    This testimony, before a public hearing of the New York City Commission on Human Rights in May 1974, summarizes extensive studies of changing minority residential patterns in metropolitan Washington and less extensive studies of other groups; the prospects for future desegregation and for using the growing economic potential of minority families…

  15. Engaging with sustainability issues in metropolitan Chennai

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kennedy, L.; Varrel, A.; Denis, E.; Dupont, V.; Dhanalakshmi, R.; Roumeau, S.; Baud, I.; Pfeffer, K.; Sridharan, N.; Vijayabaskar, M.; Suresh Babu, M.; Seifelislam, A.; Rouanet, H.; Saharan, T.

    2014-01-01

    Chennai is the largest metropolitan city in South India (8.7 million in 2011) and the provincial capital of the large state of Tamil Nadu (population 72 million in 2011). Before that, under British rule, the city was the capital of the Madras Presidency, and was known as Madras until 1996, when the

  16. Kansas City Metropolitan Community Colleges. Audit Report.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Missouri Office of the State Auditor, Jefferson City.

    This audit report reviews the employment contracts, related compensation, and other benefits provided for the chancellor and other officers of the Kansas City Metropolitan Community Colleges (KCMCC) in Missouri. The chancellor is allowed to either solicit bids or negotiate for contracted services such as architects, construction managers,…

  17. Reconceptualization Sexuality and Rethinking Homophobia in Metropolitan Campus Spaces

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deniz, Caglar

    2017-01-01

    The Metropolitan city gives non-metropolitan students an opportunity to meet new social groups. In this article, the perceptions of sexuality of those students who come from provincial areas to a metropolitan city for university education are examined within a framework of semi-structured interviews. The study on which this article is based used a…

  18. Spatial variations in US poverty: beyond metropolitan and non-metropolitan.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Man; Kleit, Rachel Garshick; Cover, Jane; Fowler, Christopher S

    2012-01-01

    Because poverty in rural and urban areas of the US often has different causes, correlates and solutions, effective anti-poverty policies depend on a thorough understanding of the ruralness or urbanness of specific places. This paper compares several widely used classification schemes and the varying magnitudes of poverty that they reveal in the US. The commonly used ‘metropolitan/non-metropolitan’ distinction obscures important socioeconomic differences among metropolitan areas, making our understanding of the geography of poverty imprecise. Given the number and concentration of poor people living in mixed-rural and rural counties in metropolitan regions, researchers and policy-makers need to pay more nuanced attention to the opportunities and constraints such individuals face. A cross-classification of the Office of Management and Budget’s metro system with a nuanced RUDC scheme is the most effective for revealing the geographical complexities of poverty within metropolitan areas.

  19. An introduction to application-independent evaluation of speaker recognition systems

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Leeuwen, D.A. van; Brümmer, N.

    2007-01-01

    In the evaluation of speaker recognition systems - an important part of speaker classification [1], the trade-off between missed speakers and false alarms has always been an important diagnostic tool. NIST has defined the task of speaker detection with the associated Detection Cost Function (DCF) to

  20. The Italian Dementia National Plan

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Teresa Di Fiandra

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available The Italian Dementia National Plan was formulated in October 2014 by the Italian Ministry of Health in close cooperation with the regions, the National Institute of Health and the three major national associations of patients and carers. The main purpose of this strategy was to provide directive indications for promoting and improving interventions in the dementia field, not limiting to specialist and therapeutic actions, but particularly focusing on the support of patients and families throughout the pathways of care. Four main objectives are indicated: 1 promote health- and social-care interventions and policies; 2 create/strengthen the integrated network of services for dementia based on an integrated approach; 3 implement strategies for promoting appropriateness and quality of care; and 4 improve the quality of life of persons with dementia and their families by supporting empowerment and stigma reduction. These objectives and the pertaining actions are described in the present paper.

  1. Italian energy scenarios comparative evaluations

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Contaldi, Mario

    2005-01-01

    This paper reviews some representative scenarios of the evolution of the Italian primary energy consumption, updated recently. After an overview of the main macroeconomics assumptions the scenario results are cross checked at sectorial level, with a brief discussion of the underlining data and energy intensity trends. The emissions of CO 2 , SO 2 and NO x resulting from the considered scenarios are also reported and discussed [it

  2. Plutonium contamination in italian population

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cave-Bondi, G.; Merli, S.; Rogo, M.; Sgarbazzini, M.; Clemente, G.F.; Mancini, L.; Santori, G.; Tardella, Q.

    1983-01-01

    The literature data concerning the biological and the chemical physical characteristics of plutonium are summarized in the first part of the paper. The experimental results of the plutonium concentration in complete diets, single food items and some human autopsy tissues, regarding the Italian situation, are then presented and discussed. Our experimental data are in good agreement with similar data reported in several studies carried out in some countries of the north emisphere

  3. The new Italian IVF legislation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Benagiano, Giuseppe; Gianaroli, Luca

    2004-08-01

    Last February, the Italian Parliament gave final approval to a new Law regulating assisted reproduction technology. The new legislation fell short of the expectations of infertile couples and of all specialists in the field. There are three problems with the new Italian law; they involve social issues, human rights and the application of technology. The present paper focuses on the fact that the new rules infringe upon basic human rights and the proper application of IVF technology, because they mandate procedures that are against the best interest of the woman seeking pregnancy. The main point of controversy is the combination of a mandatory limit of three embryos for transfer, and an obligation to reimplant all produced embryos; cryopreservation of excess embryos is prohibited. Obviously, this decreases the chances of most women to achieve pregnancy, while at the same time it increases the number and complexity of procedures they need to undergo and may expose some to an unacceptable increase in the risk of multiple pregnancy. The new law is inspired by the desire to protect every newly produced embryo; this is a commendable aim, although it is in total opposition to a law passed over 25 years ago that liberalized voluntary termination of first trimester pregnancies. This means that today Italy has a law that protects every early, pre-implantation embryo, and another that allows the 'suppression' of every post-implantation one. From a technical point of view, given the low level of human fecundity, the only way to prevent the 'loss' of even one preimplantation embryo is to simply ban IVF altogether, an option that Italian legislators obviously did not have the courage to opt for. The tragedy is that Italian infertile couples are now confronted with new rules that not only severely limit the ability of physicians to correctly apply IVF technology, but are so confused that, depending on the interpretation, anyone may try to nullify the main ideological premise upon

  4. Language Policy and Planning: The Case of Italian Sign Language

    Science.gov (United States)

    Geraci, Carlo

    2012-01-01

    Italian Sign Language (LIS) is the name of the language used by the Italian Deaf community. The acronym LIS derives from Lingua italiana dei segni ("Italian language of signs"), although nowadays Italians refers to LIS as Lingua dei segni italiana, reflecting the more appropriate phrasing "Italian sign language." Historically,…

  5. Noise Reduction with Microphone Arrays for Speaker Identification

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Cohen, Z

    2011-12-22

    Reducing acoustic noise in audio recordings is an ongoing problem that plagues many applications. This noise is hard to reduce because of interfering sources and non-stationary behavior of the overall background noise. Many single channel noise reduction algorithms exist but are limited in that the more the noise is reduced; the more the signal of interest is distorted due to the fact that the signal and noise overlap in frequency. Specifically acoustic background noise causes problems in the area of speaker identification. Recording a speaker in the presence of acoustic noise ultimately limits the performance and confidence of speaker identification algorithms. In situations where it is impossible to control the environment where the speech sample is taken, noise reduction filtering algorithms need to be developed to clean the recorded speech of background noise. Because single channel noise reduction algorithms would distort the speech signal, the overall challenge of this project was to see if spatial information provided by microphone arrays could be exploited to aid in speaker identification. The goals are: (1) Test the feasibility of using microphone arrays to reduce background noise in speech recordings; (2) Characterize and compare different multichannel noise reduction algorithms; (3) Provide recommendations for using these multichannel algorithms; and (4) Ultimately answer the question - Can the use of microphone arrays aid in speaker identification?

  6. Fluency profile: comparison between Brazilian and European Portuguese speakers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Castro, Blenda Stephanie Alves e; Martins-Reis, Vanessa de Oliveira; Baptista, Ana Catarina; Celeste, Letícia Correa

    2014-01-01

    The purpose of the study was to compare the speech fluency of Brazilian Portuguese speakers with that of European Portuguese speakers. The study participants were 76 individuals of any ethnicity or skin color aged 18-29 years. Of the participants, 38 lived in Brazil and 38 in Portugal. Speech samples from all participants were obtained and analyzed according to the variables of typology and frequency of speech disruptions and speech rate. Descriptive and inferential statistical analyses were performed to assess the association between the fluency profile and linguistic variant variables. We found that the speech rate of European Portuguese speakers was higher than the speech rate of Brazilian Portuguese speakers in words per minute (p=0.004). The qualitative distribution of the typology of common dysfluencies (pPortuguese speakers is not available, speech therapists in Portugal can use the same speech fluency assessment as has been used in Brazil to establish a diagnosis of stuttering, especially in regard to typical and stuttering dysfluencies, with care taken when evaluating the speech rate.

  7. THE HUMOROUS SPEAKER: THE CONSTRUCTION OF ETHOS IN COMEDY

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maria Flávia Figueiredo

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available The rhetoric is guided by three dimensions: logos, pathos and ethos. Logos is the speech itself, pathos are the passions that the speaker, through logos, awakens in his audience, and ethos is the image that the speaker creates of himself, also through logos, in front of an audience. The rhetorical genres are three: deliberative (which drives the audience or the judge to think about future events, characterizing them as convenient or harmful, judiciary (the audience thinks about past events in order to classify them as fair or unfair and epidictic (the audience will judge any fact occurred, or even the character of a person as beautiful or not. According to Figueiredo (2014 and based on Eggs (2005, we advocate that ethos is not a mark left by the speaker only in rhetorical genres, but in any textual genre, once the result of human production, the simplest choices in textual construction, are able to reproduce something that is closely linked to speaker, thus, demarcating hir/her ethos. To verify this assumption, we selected a display of a video of the comedian Danilo Gentili, which will be examined in the light of Rhetoric and Textual Linguistics. So, our objective is to find, in the stand-up comedy genre, marks left by the speaker in the speech that characterizes his/her ethos. The analysis results show that ethos, discursive genre and communicational purpose amalgamate in an indissoluble complex in which the success of one of them interdepends on how the other was built.

  8. Direct Speaker Gaze Promotes Trust in Truth-Ambiguous Statements.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kreysa, Helene; Kessler, Luise; Schweinberger, Stefan R

    2016-01-01

    A speaker's gaze behaviour can provide perceivers with a multitude of cues which are relevant for communication, thus constituting an important non-verbal interaction channel. The present study investigated whether direct eye gaze of a speaker affects the likelihood of listeners believing truth-ambiguous statements. Participants were presented with videos in which a speaker produced such statements with either direct or averted gaze. The statements were selected through a rating study to ensure that participants were unlikely to know a-priori whether they were true or not (e.g., "sniffer dogs cannot smell the difference between identical twins"). Participants indicated in a forced-choice task whether or not they believed each statement. We found that participants were more likely to believe statements by a speaker looking at them directly, compared to a speaker with averted gaze. Moreover, when participants disagreed with a statement, they were slower to do so when the statement was uttered with direct (compared to averted) gaze, suggesting that the process of rejecting a statement as untrue may be inhibited when that statement is accompanied by direct gaze.

  9. Direct Speaker Gaze Promotes Trust in Truth-Ambiguous Statements.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Helene Kreysa

    Full Text Available A speaker's gaze behaviour can provide perceivers with a multitude of cues which are relevant for communication, thus constituting an important non-verbal interaction channel. The present study investigated whether direct eye gaze of a speaker affects the likelihood of listeners believing truth-ambiguous statements. Participants were presented with videos in which a speaker produced such statements with either direct or averted gaze. The statements were selected through a rating study to ensure that participants were unlikely to know a-priori whether they were true or not (e.g., "sniffer dogs cannot smell the difference between identical twins". Participants indicated in a forced-choice task whether or not they believed each statement. We found that participants were more likely to believe statements by a speaker looking at them directly, compared to a speaker with averted gaze. Moreover, when participants disagreed with a statement, they were slower to do so when the statement was uttered with direct (compared to averted gaze, suggesting that the process of rejecting a statement as untrue may be inhibited when that statement is accompanied by direct gaze.

  10. Utilising Tree-Based Ensemble Learning for Speaker Segmentation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Abou-Zleikha, Mohamed; Tan, Zheng-Hua; Christensen, Mads Græsbøll

    2014-01-01

    In audio and speech processing, accurate detection of the changing points between multiple speakers in speech segments is an important stage for several applications such as speaker identification and tracking. Bayesian Information Criteria (BIC)-based approaches are the most traditionally used...... for a certain condition, the model becomes biased to the data used for training limiting the model’s generalisation ability. In this paper, we propose a BIC-based tuning-free approach for speaker segmentation through the use of ensemble-based learning. A forest of segmentation trees is constructed in which each...... tree is trained using a sampled version of the speech segment. During the tree construction process, a set of randomly selected points in the input sequence is examined as potential segmentation points. The point that yields the highest ΔBIC is chosen and the same process is repeated for the resultant...

  11. Robust Digital Speech Watermarking For Online Speaker Recognition

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mohammad Ali Nematollahi

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available A robust and blind digital speech watermarking technique has been proposed for online speaker recognition systems based on Discrete Wavelet Packet Transform (DWPT and multiplication to embed the watermark in the amplitudes of the wavelet’s subbands. In order to minimize the degradation effect of the watermark, these subbands are selected where less speaker-specific information was available (500 Hz–3500 Hz and 6000 Hz–7000 Hz. Experimental results on Texas Instruments Massachusetts Institute of Technology (TIMIT, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT, and Mobile Biometry (MOBIO show that the degradation for speaker verification and identification is 1.16% and 2.52%, respectively. Furthermore, the proposed watermark technique can provide enough robustness against different signal processing attacks.

  12. Quantile Acoustic Vectors vs. MFCC Applied to Speaker Verification

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mayorga-Ortiz Pedro

    2014-02-01

    Full Text Available In this paper we describe speaker and command recognition related experiments, through quantile vectors and Gaussian Mixture Modelling (GMM. Over the past several years GMM and MFCC have become two of the dominant approaches for modelling speaker and speech recognition applications. However, memory and computational costs are important drawbacks, because autonomous systems suffer processing and power consumption constraints; thus, having a good trade-off between accuracy and computational requirements is mandatory. We decided to explore another approach (quantile vectors in several tasks and a comparison with MFCC was made. Quantile acoustic vectors are proposed for speaker verification and command recognition tasks and the results showed very good recognition efficiency. This method offered a good trade-off between computation times, characteristics vector complexity and overall achieved efficiency.

  13. Analysis of Feature Extraction Methods for Speaker Dependent Speech Recognition

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gurpreet Kaur

    2017-02-01

    Full Text Available Speech recognition is about what is being said, irrespective of who is saying. Speech recognition is a growing field. Major progress is taking place on the technology of automatic speech recognition (ASR. Still, there are lots of barriers in this field in terms of recognition rate, background noise, speaker variability, speaking rate, accent etc. Speech recognition rate mainly depends on the selection of features and feature extraction methods. This paper outlines the feature extraction techniques for speaker dependent speech recognition for isolated words. A brief survey of different feature extraction techniques like Mel-Frequency Cepstral Coefficients (MFCC, Linear Predictive Coding Coefficients (LPCC, Perceptual Linear Prediction (PLP, Relative Spectra Perceptual linear Predictive (RASTA-PLP analysis are presented and evaluation is done. Speech recognition has various applications from daily use to commercial use. We have made a speaker dependent system and this system can be useful in many areas like controlling a patient vehicle using simple commands.

  14. Metropolitan Quantum Key Distribution with Silicon Photonics

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Darius Bunandar

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available Photonic integrated circuits provide a compact and stable platform for quantum photonics. Here we demonstrate a silicon photonics quantum key distribution (QKD encoder in the first high-speed polarization-based QKD field tests. The systems reach composable secret key rates of 1.039 Mbps in a local test (on a 103.6-m fiber with a total emulated loss of 9.2 dB and 157 kbps in an intercity metropolitan test (on a 43-km fiber with 16.4 dB loss. Our results represent the highest secret key generation rate for polarization-based QKD experiments at a standard telecom wavelength and demonstrate photonic integrated circuits as a promising, scalable resource for future formation of metropolitan quantum-secure communications networks.

  15. Metropolitan Quantum Key Distribution with Silicon Photonics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bunandar, Darius; Lentine, Anthony; Lee, Catherine; Cai, Hong; Long, Christopher M.; Boynton, Nicholas; Martinez, Nicholas; DeRose, Christopher; Chen, Changchen; Grein, Matthew; Trotter, Douglas; Starbuck, Andrew; Pomerene, Andrew; Hamilton, Scott; Wong, Franco N. C.; Camacho, Ryan; Davids, Paul; Urayama, Junji; Englund, Dirk

    2018-04-01

    Photonic integrated circuits provide a compact and stable platform for quantum photonics. Here we demonstrate a silicon photonics quantum key distribution (QKD) encoder in the first high-speed polarization-based QKD field tests. The systems reach composable secret key rates of 1.039 Mbps in a local test (on a 103.6-m fiber with a total emulated loss of 9.2 dB) and 157 kbps in an intercity metropolitan test (on a 43-km fiber with 16.4 dB loss). Our results represent the highest secret key generation rate for polarization-based QKD experiments at a standard telecom wavelength and demonstrate photonic integrated circuits as a promising, scalable resource for future formation of metropolitan quantum-secure communications networks.

  16. Air pollution holiday effect in metropolitan Kaohsiung

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tan, P.; Chen, P. Y.

    2014-12-01

    Different from Taipei, the metropolitan Kaohsiung which is a coastal and industrial city has the major pollution sources from stationary sources such as coal-fired power plants, petrochemical facilities and steel plants, rather than mobile sources. This study was an attempt to conduct a comprehensive and systematical examination of the holiday effect, defined as the difference in air pollutant concentrations between holiday and non-holiday periods, over the Kaohsiung metropolitan area. We documented evidence of a "holiday effect", where concentrations of NOx, CO, NMHC, SO2 and PM10 were significantly different between holidays and non-holidays, in the Kaohsiung metropolitan area from daily surface measurements of seven air quality monitoring stations of the Taiwan Environmental Protection Administration during the Chinese New Year (CNY) and non-Chinese New Year (NCNY) periods of 1994-2010. Concentrations of the five pollutants were lower in the CNY than in the NCNY period, however, that of O3 was higher in the CNY than in the NCNY period and had no holiday effect. The exclusion of the bad air quality day (PSI > 100) and the Lantern Festival Day showed no significant effects on the holiday effects of air pollutants. Ship transportation data of Kaohsiung Harbor Bureau showed a statistically significant difference in the CNY and NCNY period. This difference was consistent with those found in air pollutant concentrations of some industrial and general stations in coastal areas, implying the possible impact of traffic activity on the air quality of coastal areas. Holiday effects of air pollutants over the Taipei metropolitan area by Tan et al. (2009) are also compared.

  17. Using Avatars for Improving Speaker Identification in Captioning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vy, Quoc V.; Fels, Deborah I.

    Captioning is the main method for accessing television and film content by people who are deaf or hard-of-hearing. One major difficulty consistently identified by the community is that of knowing who is speaking particularly for an off screen narrator. A captioning system was created using a participatory design method to improve speaker identification. The final prototype contained avatars and a coloured border for identifying specific speakers. Evaluation results were very positive; however participants also wanted to customize various components such as caption and avatar location.

  18. Green Infrastructure Concept for JABODETABEKJUR Metropolitan Area

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tanuwidjaja, Gunawan; Gates Chang, Bill

    2017-07-01

    Sixty “Mega Cities” would emerge by 2015 catering of 600 million populations, and were threatened by the climate change, because of cyclones, flooding, etc. Jakarta became a metro region covering Jakarta, Bogor, Tangerang, Bekasi, Depok and Cianjur. Jakarta metropolitan faced the very high population growth, urban sprawling, traffic jams, flooding, green open space reduction, environmental degradation, urban slums and illegal street hawkers. Flooding and traffic congestions were the two most important issues to solve. SWOT analysis and urban design solutions were produced to create a sustainable solution. Related to transportation issues, Singapore Mass Rapid Transport (MRT) concept was evaluated. Meanwhile the Netherlands’ polder concept as well as Singapore’s Integrated Water Management were also analyzed. The development of above ground MRT as well as Busway could be developed to connect Jakarta Metropolitan Region. The networks were developed on the main toll road networks. The MRT and Busway would eventually replace the need of automobile use in the future. The Transit - Oriented - Development (TOD) with high density can be suggested to be concentrated nearby the MRT and Busway interchange stations. The Netherlands’ polder and were adopted for urban’ low-lying lands in Jakarta Metropolitan Region, A polder system was defined as the Integrated Man-made Drainage System consisting Dikes, Drains, Retention Ponds, Outfall Structures or Pumping Stations. The polder system was proposed to be extended to Tangerang and Bekasi area.

  19. Händel- Italian Cantatas

    OpenAIRE

    Larjamo, Suvi

    2010-01-01

    Työni tarkoituksena oli esitellä kaksi Händelin hyvin erilaista ja harvoin esitettyä kantaatti hänen Italian-ajaltaan, sekä tulkita erilaisia affekteja, joita kantaateista löytyi. Valitsemani kantaatit olivat: Tra le fiamme, sekä Dietro l’ormi fugaci (Armida abbandonata). Tutkimuksessa selvitin säveltäjän elämää kantaattien sävellysvuosina ja perehdyin asioihin, jotka mielestäni ovat vaikuttaneet teosten syntyyn, sekä asioihin, jotka auttoivat minua tulkitsemaan hänen musiikkiaan paremmin. ...

  20. Competition Advocacy: the Italian Experience

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Salvatore Rebecchini

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available Competition advocacy is considered, together with enforcement, the core business of an antitrust authority. Broadly speaking there are at least three main tasks regularly performed by most, if not all, antitrust agencies that are amenable to the advocacy function: addressing laws and regulations in order to remove unnecessary impediments to competition; engaging in sector enquiries to understand markets behavior and identify critical issues; explaining the benefits of open competitive markets to the public opinion. This article examines these three main tasks and outlines the challenges for competition agencies, with references to the experience of the Italian Competition Authority (ICA and the initiatives undertaken at international level.

  1. Status report on Italian activities

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Tavoni, R.

    1999-01-01

    The main features of the Italian energy supply situation is shown. Primary energy demand increased by 2.7% while the total final consumption was mainly attributed to industry, transport, household and services. Nuclear activities of ENEL were related mostly to nuclear fuel cycle, i.e. processing and disposal of nuclear waste from phased out nuclear power plants. The following nine research programs were foreseen: proton source; low and medium energy accelerator section; high energy accelerator section; neutron production for material characterization; general safety criteria and classification; neutronics and transmutation efficiency; thermal-hydraulic analysis; beam window technology; materials technology

  2. Physicochemical and microbiological characteristics of Italian salami ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The purpose of this study was to evaluate and compare the inclusion of different levels of pequi (Caryocar Brasiliense, Cambess) pulp in the processing of Italian salami made of lamb for the evaluation of their physicochemical and microbiological characteristics. Six formulations of Italian salamis were processed: no pequi ...

  3. European energy policy and Italian industry

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cardinale, A.; Verdelli, A.

    2008-01-01

    The competitiveness of the Italian industry is very sensitive to the rising costs of energy. The European energy policy, if intended as an additional constraint, could deteriorate the situation. It could be, however, a good opportunity for the Italian industry to become more independent from fossil fuels, through an innovatory project at country level [it

  4. The Space-Time Topography of English Speakers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Duman, Steve

    2016-01-01

    English speakers talk and think about Time in terms of physical space. The past is behind us, and the future is in front of us. In this way, we "map" space onto Time. This dissertation addresses the specificity of this physical space, or its topography. Inspired by languages like Yupno (Nunez, et al., 2012) and Bamileke-Dschang (Hyman,…

  5. Within the School and the Community--A Speaker's Bureau.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McClintock, Joy H.

    Student interest prompted the formation of a Speaker's Bureau in Seminole Senior High School, Seminole, Florida. First, students compiled a list of community contacts, including civic clubs, churches, retirement villages, newspaper offices, and the County School Administration media center. A letter of introduction was composed and speaking…

  6. Recognition of speaker-dependent continuous speech with KEAL

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mercier, G.; Bigorgne, D.; Miclet, L.; Le Guennec, L.; Querre, M.

    1989-04-01

    A description of the speaker-dependent continuous speech recognition system KEAL is given. An unknown utterance, is recognized by means of the followng procedures: acoustic analysis, phonetic segmentation and identification, word and sentence analysis. The combination of feature-based, speaker-independent coarse phonetic segmentation with speaker-dependent statistical classification techniques is one of the main design features of the acoustic-phonetic decoder. The lexical access component is essentially based on a statistical dynamic programming technique which aims at matching a phonemic lexical entry containing various phonological forms, against a phonetic lattice. Sentence recognition is achieved by use of a context-free grammar and a parsing algorithm derived from Earley's parser. A speaker adaptation module allows some of the system parameters to be adjusted by matching known utterances with their acoustical representation. The task to be performed, described by its vocabulary and its grammar, is given as a parameter of the system. Continuously spoken sentences extracted from a 'pseudo-Logo' language are analyzed and results are presented.

  7. Gesturing by Speakers with Aphasia: How Does It Compare?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mol, Lisette; Krahmer, Emiel; van de Sandt-Koenderman, Mieke

    2013-01-01

    Purpose: To study the independence of gesture and verbal language production. The authors assessed whether gesture can be semantically compensatory in cases of verbal language impairment and whether speakers with aphasia and control participants use similar depiction techniques in gesture. Method: The informativeness of gesture was assessed in 3…

  8. Sentence comprehension in Swahili-English bilingual agrammatic speakers

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Abuom, Tom O.; Shah, Emmah; Bastiaanse, Roelien

    For this study, sentence comprehension was tested in Swahili-English bilingual agrammatic speakers. The sentences were controlled for four factors: (1) order of the arguments (base vs. derived); (2) embedding (declarative vs. relative sentences); (3) overt use of the relative pronoun "who"; (4)

  9. Schizophrenia among Sesotho speakers in South Africa | Mosotho ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Results: Core symptoms of schizophrenia among Sesotho speakers do not differ significantly from other cultures. However, the content of psychological symptoms such as delusions and hallucinations is strongly affected by cultural variables. Somatic symptoms such as headaches, palpitations, dizziness and excessive ...

  10. Native Speakers' Perception of Non-Native English Speech

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jaber, Maysa; Hussein, Riyad F.

    2011-01-01

    This study is aimed at investigating the rating and intelligibility of different non-native varieties of English, namely French English, Japanese English and Jordanian English by native English speakers and their attitudes towards these foreign accents. To achieve the goals of this study, the researchers used a web-based questionnaire which…

  11. Openings and Closings in Telephone Conversations between Native Spanish Speakers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coronel-Molina, Serafin M.

    1998-01-01

    A study analyzed the opening and closing sequences of 11 dyads of native Spanish-speakers in natural telephone conversations conducted in Spanish. The objective was to determine how closely Hispanic cultural patterns of conduct for telephone conversations follow the sequences outlined in previous research. It is concluded that Spanish…

  12. Why reference to the past is difficult for agrammatic speakers

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bastiaanse, Roelien

    Many studies have shown that verb inflections are difficult to produce for agrammatic aphasic speakers: they are frequently omitted and substituted. The present article gives an overview of our search to understanding why this is the case. The hypothesis is that grammatical morphology referring to

  13. Speaker Recognition from Emotional Speech Using I-vector Approach

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    MACKOVÁ Lenka

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available In recent years the concept of i-vectors become very popular and successful in the field of the speaker verification. The basic principle of i-vectors is that each utterance is represented by fixed-length feature vector of low-dimension. In the literature for purpose of speaker verification various recordings obtained from telephones or microphones were used. The aim of this experiment was to perform speaker verification using speaker model trained with emotional recordings on i-vector basis. The Mel Frequency Cepstral Coefficients (MFCC, log energy, their deltas and acceleration coefficients were used in process of features extraction. As the classification methods of the verification system Mahalanobis distance metric in combination with Eigen Factor Radial normalization was used and in the second approach Cosine Distance Scoring (CSS metric with Within-class Covariance Normalization as a channel compensation was employed. This verification system used emotional recordings of male subjects from freely available German emotional database (Emo-DB.

  14. Teaching the Native English Speaker How to Teach English

    Science.gov (United States)

    Odhuu, Kelli

    2014-01-01

    This article speaks to teachers who have been paired with native speakers (NSs) who have never taught before, and the feelings of frustration, discouragement, and nervousness on the teacher's behalf that can occur as a result. In order to effectively tackle this situation, teachers need to work together with the NSs. Teachers in this scenario…

  15. Segmentation of the Speaker's Face Region with Audiovisual Correlation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Yuyu; Sato, Yoichi

    The ability to find the speaker's face region in a video is useful for various applications. In this work, we develop a novel technique to find this region within different time windows, which is robust against the changes of view, scale, and background. The main thrust of our technique is to integrate audiovisual correlation analysis into a video segmentation framework. We analyze the audiovisual correlation locally by computing quadratic mutual information between our audiovisual features. The computation of quadratic mutual information is based on the probability density functions estimated by kernel density estimation with adaptive kernel bandwidth. The results of this audiovisual correlation analysis are incorporated into graph cut-based video segmentation to resolve a globally optimum extraction of the speaker's face region. The setting of any heuristic threshold in this segmentation is avoided by learning the correlation distributions of speaker and background by expectation maximization. Experimental results demonstrate that our method can detect the speaker's face region accurately and robustly for different views, scales, and backgrounds.

  16. Google Home: smart speaker as environmental control unit.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Noda, Kenichiro

    2017-08-23

    Environmental Control Units (ECU) are devices or a system that allows a person to control appliances in their home or work environment. Such system can be utilized by clients with physical and/or functional disability to enhance their ability to control their environment, to promote independence and improve their quality of life. Over the last several years, there have been an emergence of several inexpensive, commercially-available, voice activated smart speakers into the market such as Google Home and Amazon Echo. These smart speakers are equipped with far field microphone that supports voice recognition, and allows for complete hand-free operation for various purposes, including for playing music, for information retrieval, and most importantly, for environmental control. Clients with disability could utilize these features to turn the unit into a simple ECU that is completely voice activated and wirelessly connected to appliances. Smart speakers, with their ease of setup, low cost and versatility, may be a more affordable and accessible alternative to the traditional ECU. Implications for Rehabilitation Environmental Control Units (ECU) enable independence for physically and functionally disabled clients, and reduce burden and frequency of demands on carers. Traditional ECU can be costly and may require clients to learn specialized skills to use. Smart speakers have the potential to be used as a new-age ECU by overcoming these barriers, and can be used by a wider range of clients.

  17. Do Speakers and Listeners Observe the Gricean Maxim of Quantity?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Engelhardt, Paul E.; Bailey, Karl G. D.; Ferreira, Fernanda

    2006-01-01

    The Gricean Maxim of Quantity is believed to govern linguistic performance. Speakers are assumed to provide as much information as required for referent identification and no more, and listeners are believed to expect unambiguous but concise descriptions. In three experiments we examined the extent to which naive participants are sensitive to the…

  18. Evidential Uses in the Spanish of Quechua Speakers in Peru.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Escobar, Anna Maria

    1994-01-01

    Analysis of recordings of spontaneous speech of native speakers of Quechua speaking Spanish as a second language reveals that, using verbal morphological resources of Spanish, they have grammaticalized an epistemic marking system resembling that of Quechua. Sources of this process in both Quechua and Spanish are analyzed. (MSE)

  19. Bilingual and Monolingual Children Prefer Native-Accented Speakers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andre L. eSouza

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available Adults and young children prefer to affiliate with some individuals rather than others. Studies have shown that monolingual children show in-group biases for individuals who speak their native language without a foreign accent (Kinzler, Dupoux, & Spelke, 2007. Some studies have suggested that bilingual children are less influenced than monolinguals by language variety when attributing personality traits to different speakers (Anisfeld & Lambert, 1964, which could indicate that bilinguals have fewer in-group biases and perhaps greater social flexibility. However, no previous studies have compared monolingual and bilingual children’s reactions to speakers with unfamiliar foreign accents. In the present study, we investigated the social preferences of 5-year-old English and French monolinguals and English-French bilinguals. Contrary to our predictions, both monolingual and bilingual preschoolers preferred to be friends with native-accented speakers over speakers who spoke their dominant language with an unfamiliar foreign accent. This result suggests that both monolingual and bilingual children have strong preferences for in-group members who use a familiar language variety, and that bilingualism does not lead to generalized social flexibility.

  20. Umesh V Waghmare | Speakers | Indian Academy of Sciences

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Umesh V Waghmare. Theoretical Sciences Unit, Jawaharlal Nehru Centre for Advanced Scientific Research, Jakkur P.O., Bangalore 560 064, ... These ideas apply quite well to dynamical structure of a crystal, as described by the dispersion of its phonons or vibrational waves. The speakers group has shown an interesting ...

  1. An evidence-based rehabilitation program for tracheoesophageal speakers

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Jongmans, P.; Rossum, M.; As-Brooks, C.; Hilgers, F.; Pols, L.; Hilgers, F.J.M.; Pols, L.C.W.; van Rossum, M.; van den Brekel, M.W.M.

    2008-01-01

    Objectives: to develop an evidence-based therapy program aimed at improving tracheoesophageal speech intelligibility. The therapy program is based on particular problems found for TE speakers in a previous study as performed by the authors. Patients/Materials and Methods: 9 male laryngectomized

  2. The Blame Game: Performance Analysis of Speaker Diarization System Components

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Huijbregts, M.A.H.; Wooters, Chuck

    2007-01-01

    In this paper we discuss the performance analysis of a speaker diarization system similar to the system that was submitted by ICSI at the NIST RT06s evaluation benchmark. The analysis that is based on a series of oracle experiments, provides a good understanding of the performance of each system

  3. Bilingual and monolingual children prefer native-accented speakers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Souza, André L; Byers-Heinlein, Krista; Poulin-Dubois, Diane

    2013-01-01

    Adults and young children prefer to affiliate with some individuals rather than others. Studies have shown that monolingual children show in-group biases for individuals who speak their native language without a foreign accent (Kinzler et al., 2007). Some studies have suggested that bilingual children are less influenced than monolinguals by language variety when attributing personality traits to different speakers (Anisfeld and Lambert, 1964), which could indicate that bilinguals have fewer in-group biases and perhaps greater social flexibility. However, no previous studies have compared monolingual and bilingual children's reactions to speakers with unfamiliar foreign accents. In the present study, we investigated the social preferences of 5-year-old English and French monolinguals and English-French bilinguals. Contrary to our predictions, both monolingual and bilingual preschoolers preferred to be friends with native-accented speakers over speakers who spoke their dominant language with an unfamiliar foreign accent. This result suggests that both monolingual and bilingual children have strong preferences for in-group members who use a familiar language variety, and that bilingualism does not lead to generalized social flexibility.

  4. Perception of English palatal codas by Korean speakers of English

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yeon, Sang-Hee

    2003-04-01

    This study aimed at looking at perception of English palatal codas by Korean speakers of English to determine if perception problems are the source of production problems. In particular, first, this study looked at the possible first language effect on the perception of English palatal codas. Second, a possible perceptual source of vowel epenthesis after English palatal codas was investigated. In addition, individual factors, such as length of residence, TOEFL score, gender and academic status, were compared to determine if those affected the varying degree of the perception accuracy. Eleven adult Korean speakers of English as well as three native speakers of English participated in the study. Three sets of a perception test including identification of minimally different English pseudo- or real words were carried out. The results showed that, first, the Korean speakers perceived the English codas significantly worse than the Americans. Second, the study supported the idea that Koreans perceived an extra /i/ after the final affricates due to final release. Finally, none of the individual factors explained the varying degree of the perceptional accuracy. In particular, TOEFL scores and the perception test scores did not have any statistically significant association.

  5. Evaluating acoustic speaker normalization algorithms: evidence from longitudinal child data.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kohn, Mary Elizabeth; Farrington, Charlie

    2012-03-01

    Speaker vowel formant normalization, a technique that controls for variation introduced by physical differences between speakers, is necessary in variationist studies to compare speakers of different ages, genders, and physiological makeup in order to understand non-physiological variation patterns within populations. Many algorithms have been established to reduce variation introduced into vocalic data from physiological sources. The lack of real-time studies tracking the effectiveness of these normalization algorithms from childhood through adolescence inhibits exploration of child participation in vowel shifts. This analysis compares normalization techniques applied to data collected from ten African American children across five time points. Linear regressions compare the reduction in variation attributable to age and gender for each speaker for the vowels BEET, BAT, BOT, BUT, and BOAR. A normalization technique is successful if it maintains variation attributable to a reference sociolinguistic variable, while reducing variation attributable to age. Results indicate that normalization techniques which rely on both a measure of central tendency and range of the vowel space perform best at reducing variation attributable to age, although some variation attributable to age persists after normalization for some sections of the vowel space. © 2012 Acoustical Society of America

  6. Reading and Vocabulary Recommendations for Spanish for Native Speakers Materials.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spencer, Laura Gutierrez

    1995-01-01

    Focuses on the need for appropriate materials to address the needs of native speakers of Spanish who study Spanish in American universities and high schools. The most important factors influencing the selection of readings should include the practical nature of themes for reading and vocabulary development, level of difficulty, and variety in…

  7. On the Use of Complementary Spectral Features for Speaker Recognition

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sridhar Krishnan

    2007-12-01

    Full Text Available The most popular features for speaker recognition are Mel frequency cepstral coefficients (MFCCs and linear prediction cepstral coefficients (LPCCs. These features are used extensively because they characterize the vocal tract configuration which is known to be highly speaker-dependent. In this work, several features are introduced that can characterize the vocal system in order to complement the traditional features and produce better speaker recognition models. The spectral centroid (SC, spectral bandwidth (SBW, spectral band energy (SBE, spectral crest factor (SCF, spectral flatness measure (SFM, Shannon entropy (SE, and Renyi entropy (RE were utilized for this purpose. This work demonstrates that these features are robust in noisy conditions by simulating some common distortions that are found in the speakers' environment and a typical telephone channel. Babble noise, additive white Gaussian noise (AWGN, and a bandpass channel with 1 dB of ripple were used to simulate these noisy conditions. The results show significant improvements in classification performance for all noise conditions when these features were used to complement the MFCC and ΔMFCC features. In particular, the SC and SCF improved performance in almost all noise conditions within the examined SNR range (10–40 dB. For example, in cases where there was only one source of distortion, classification improvements of up to 8% and 10% were achieved under babble noise and AWGN, respectively, using the SCF feature.

  8. Epilepsy and vaccinations: Italian guidelines.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pruna, Dario; Balestri, Paolo; Zamponi, Nelia; Grosso, Salvatore; Gobbi, Giuseppe; Romeo, Antonino; Franzoni, Emilio; Osti, Maria; Capovilla, Giuseppe; Longhi, Riccardo; Verrotti, Alberto

    2013-10-01

    Reports of childhood epilepsies in temporal association with vaccination have had a great impact on the acceptance of vaccination programs by health care providers, but little is known about this possible temporal association and about the types of seizures following vaccinations. For these reasons the Italian League Against Epilepsy (LICE), in collaboration with other Italian scientific societies, has decided to generate Guidelines on Vaccinations and Epilepsy. The aim of Guidelines on Vaccinations and Epilepsy is to present recent unequivocal evidence from published reports on the possible relationship between vaccines and epilepsy in order to provide information about contraindications and risks of vaccinations in patients with epilepsy. The following main issues have been addressed: (1) whether contraindications to vaccinations exist in patients with febrile convulsions, epilepsy, and/or epileptic encephalopathies; and (2) whether any vaccinations can cause febrile seizures, epilepsy, and/or epileptic encephalopathies. Diphtheria-tetanus-pertussis (DTP) vaccination and measles, mumps, and rubella vaccination (MMR) increase significantly the risk of febrile seizures. Recent observations and data about the relationships between vaccination and epileptic encephalopathy show that some cases of apparent vaccine-induced encephalopathy could in fact be caused by an inherent genetic defect with no causal relationship with vaccination. Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2013 International League Against Epilepsy.

  9. Italian experience in gasification plants

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rinaldi, N.U.

    1991-01-01

    After tracing the historical highlights representing the development of the Fauser (Montecatini) technology based gasification processes for the production of ammonia and methanol, this paper outlines the key design, operation and performance characteristics of the Montecatini (Italy) process plant for heavy liquid hydrocarbons gasification by means of partial auto-thermal combustion with oxygen. The outline makes evident the technical-economical validity of the Montecatini design solutions which include energy recovery (even the heat dispersed through the gasifier walls is recovered and utilized to produce low pressure steam to preheat the fuel oil); reduced oxygen consumption by the high temperature preheating of all reagents; the ecologically compatible elimination of gas black; as well as, desulfurization with materials recovery. The plant process descriptions come complete with flowsheets. While demonstrating that the Italian developed technology is historically well rooted, the Author stresses that the current design versions of Montecatini gasification plants are up to date with innovative solutions, especially, with regard to pollution abatement, and cites the need for a more concerted marketing effort on the part of local industry to help improve the competitiveness of the Italian made product

  10. African urbanization in metropolitan South Africa--differential urbanization perspectives.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Geyer, H S

    1993-07-01

    "As a potentially important urban development policy consideration, attention is focused in this paper on differential urbanization trends in South Africa at the metropolitan level. Recent informal urban settlement patterns of the African population within the major metropolitan areas are contrasted against these differential urbanization trends to determine the implications of both for residential development in the metropolitan areas during the post-apartheid era." excerpt

  11. Labor Force Activity of Women in Metropolitan and Nonmetropolitan America. Rural Development Research Report No. 15.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brown, David L.; O'Leary, Jeanne M.

    Between 1960 and 1970 economic opportunity and progress for women in American non-metropolitan areas was mixed. While women in metropolitan areas were more likely to be labor force members than were non-metropolitan women, the difference in metropolitan and non-metropolitan labor force participation rates narrowed during the period. For women…

  12. Application of Native Speaker Models for Identifying Deviations in Rhetorical Moves in Non-Native Speaker Manuscripts

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Assef Khalili

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available Introduction: Explicit teaching of generic conventions of a text genre, usually extracted from native-speaker (NS manuscripts, has long been emphasized in the teaching of Academic Writing inEnglish for Specific Purposes (henceforthESP classes, both in theory and practice. While consciousness-raising about rhetorical structure can be instrumental to non-native speakers(NNS, it has to be admitted that most works done in the field of ESP have tended to focus almost exclusively on native-speaker (NS productions, giving scant attention to non-native speaker (NNS manuscripts. That is, having outlined established norms for good writing on the basis of NS productions, few have been inclined to provide a descriptive account of NNS attempts at trying to produce a research article (RA in English. That is what we have tried to do in the present research. Methods: We randomly selected 20 RAs in dentistry and used two well-established models for results and discussion sections to try to describe the move structure of these articles and show the points of divergence from the established norms. Results: The results pointed to significant divergences that could seriously compromise the quality of an RA. Conclusion: It is believed that the insights gained on the deviations in NNS manuscripts could prove very useful in designing syllabi for ESP classes.

  13. Helsinki Metropolitan Area Climate Change Adaptation Strategy

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    2012-07-01

    The Helsinki Metropolitan Area Climate Change Adaptation Strategy has been prepared in close cooperation with the four cities of the metropolitan area (Helsinki, Espoo, Vantaa and Kauniainen), the Helsinki Region Environmental Services Authority HSY and other municipal, regional and state level organisations. In the strategy, strategic starting points and policies with which the metropolitan area prepares for the consequences of climate change, are compiled. The Helsinki Metropolitan Area adaptation strategy concentrates on the adaptation of the built and urban environment to the changing climate. The vision of the strategy is climate proof city - the future is built now. The strategy aims to (1) assess the impacts of climate change in the area, (2) prepare for the impacts of climate change and to extreme weather events and (3) to reduce the vulnerabilities of the area to climate variability and change. The target is to secure the well-being of the citizens and the functioning of the cities also in the changing climate conditions. The preparation of the adaptation strategy started in 2009 by producing the background studies. They include the regional climate and sea level scenarios, modelling of river floods in climate change conditions and a survey of climate change impacts in the region. Also, existing programmes, legislation, research and studies concerning adaptation were collected. The background studies are published in a report titled 'The Helsinki metropolitan area climate is changing - Adaptation strategy background studies' (in Finnish) (HSY 2010). HSY coordinated the strategy preparation. The work was carried out is close cooperation with the experts of the metropolitan area cities, regional emergency services, Ministry of the Environment, Helsinki Region Transport Authority and other regional organisations. The strategy work has had a steering group that consists of representatives of the cities and other central cooperation partners. The

  14. Using Information and Communication Technology in Italian Language Learning and Teaching: from Teacher Education to Classroom Activities

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Matteo Viale

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available This paper describes the in-service teacher education activities carried out by the research unit from the University of Bologna involved in the European project E-LENGUA. This project focuses on the use of Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs in teaching Italian in the multilingual classroom. The paper opens with a description of the Italian educational context, characterised by an increasing presence of non-native speakers of Italian. Taking into consideration the linguistic needs of students with different sociolinguistic backgrounds is a significant challenge for teachers. ICTs may be helpful for teachers facing such challenges, even though there are contrasting opinions about their usage in the classroom. The paper presents some case studies on the use of ICTs in the classroom, developed within in-service teacher education activities and implemented in the classroom. These studies aim to examine the use of ICTs as a teaching resource in order to elaborate generalizable guidelines for best practices in the Italian school system.

  15. Comparative Analysys of Speech Parameters for the Design of Speaker Verification Systems

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Souza, A

    2001-01-01

    Speaker verification systems are basically composed of three stages: feature extraction, feature processing and comparison of the modified features from speaker voice and from the voice that should be...

  16. Key-note speaker: Predictors of weight loss after preventive Health consultations

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lous, Jørgen; Freund, Kirsten S

    2018-01-01

    Invited key-note speaker ved conferencen: Preventive Medicine and Public Health Conference 2018, July 16-17, London.......Invited key-note speaker ved conferencen: Preventive Medicine and Public Health Conference 2018, July 16-17, London....

  17. Model LPA Terpadu untuk Wilayah Surabaya Metropolitan

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mimien Bt. M. Al Muhdhar a Henie Irawati

    2009-02-01

    Full Text Available The purpose of this research is to establish the integrated LPA model for Surabaya Metropolitan Area. The methods used are literature overviews, comparative studies to well-established areas, and expert assistantships through national seminars. The result shows that the integrated LPA has opportunity to combine some activities such as sorting and classifying, producing, wrapping and containing, selling the compost and decayed materials, and filling residual waste by landfill system. In 25 Ha land area, 14.10 Ha is allocated for waste management, and 10.90 Ha for sanitary landfill.

  18. Metropolitan vision making - using backcasting as a strategic learning process to shape metropolitan futures

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Neuvonen, A.; Ache, P.M.

    2014-01-01

    Abstract: The need for new forward looking tools in urban planning is immense: The new functional relations and structures are stretching beyond our capacity to 'rationally' capture modern metropolitan spaces Neuman & Hull 2009). At the same time cities struggle to find tools to help manage a

  19. Authentic Italian food as Mamma used to make it!

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Madsen, Jan Halberg; d'Ambrosio, Luigi

    2015-01-01

    The purpose of this investigation is to explore how Italian restaurants define authentic Italian culinary experiences and how these experiences are designed and rendered to the restaurants’ guests.......The purpose of this investigation is to explore how Italian restaurants define authentic Italian culinary experiences and how these experiences are designed and rendered to the restaurants’ guests....

  20. ALICE honours two Italian suppliers

    CERN Multimedia

    2006-01-01

    During the ALICE week held in Bologna from 19 to 23 June, the Collaboration recognized two of its top suppliers. From left to right: Robert Terpin (MIPOT), Pier Luigi Bellutti (ITC), Andrea Zanotti, President of ITC, Luciano Bosisio (Trieste University), Gennady Zinovjev (Kiev), Catherine Decosse (CERN), Lodovico Riccati, ALICE Collaboration Board Chair (INFN Torino), Paolo Giubellino (INFN Torino), Mario Zen, Director of ITC, Maurizio Boscardin (ITC), Paolo Tonella (ITC), Jurgen Schukraft, ALICE Spokesperson (CERN), Giacomo Vito Margagliotti (Trieste University), Nevio Grion (INFN Trieste), Marco Bregant (INFN Trieste). Front row from left to right: Paolo Traverso (ITC), Federico Carminati, ALICE Computing Project Leader (CERN), and Jean-Robert Lutz, ITS-SSD Project leader (IPHC Strasbourg). It is in the picturesque city of Bologna that the ALICE Collaboration has rewarded two Italian suppliers, Istituto Trentino di Cultura ITC-irst (Trento) and MIPOT (Cormons), both involved in the construction of the Sili...

  1. Cogeneration in Italian agricultural industry

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bonfitto, E.; Jacoboni, S.

    1991-01-01

    This paper examines the technical, environmental and economical feasibility of an industrial cogeneration system which incorporates combined gas-steam cycles and a biomass/agricultural waste sludge fired fluidized bed combustion system. It cites the suitability of the use of fluidized bed combustion for the combustion of biomass and agricultural waste sludges - high combustion efficiency, uniform and relatively low combustion temperatures (850 C) within the combustion chamber to reduce scaling, reduced nitrogen oxide and micro-pollutant emissions, the possibility to control exhaust gas acidity through the injection of calcium carbonates, the possibility of the contemporaneous feeding of different fuels. Reference is made to test results obtained with an ENEL (Italian National Electricity Board) pilot plant fired by vineyard wastes. Attention is given to an analysis of the fuel's physical-chemical characteristics and the resulting flue gas chemical composition and ash characteristics. Comparisons are made with legal release limits

  2. Race in Conflict with Heritage: "Black" Heritage Language Speaker of Japanese

    Science.gov (United States)

    Doerr, Neriko Musha; Kumagai, Yuri

    2014-01-01

    "Heritage language speaker" is a relatively new term to denote minority language speakers who grew up in a household where the language was used or those who have a family, ancestral, or racial connection to the minority language. In research on heritage language speakers, overlap between these 2 definitions is often assumed--that is,…

  3. Defining "Native Speaker" in Multilingual Settings: English as a Native Language in Asia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hansen Edwards, Jette G.

    2017-01-01

    The current study examines how and why speakers of English from multilingual contexts in Asia are identifying as native speakers of English. Eighteen participants from different contexts in Asia, including Singapore, Malaysia, India, Taiwan, and The Philippines, who self-identified as native speakers of English participated in hour-long interviews…

  4. Children's Understanding That Utterances Emanate from Minds: Using Speaker Belief To Aid Interpretation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mitchell, Peter; Robinson, Elizabeth J.; Thompson, Doreen E.

    1999-01-01

    Three experiments examined 3- to 6-year olds' ability to use a speaker's utterance based on false belief to identify which of several referents was intended. Found that many 4- to 5-year olds performed correctly only when it was unnecessary to consider the speaker's belief. When the speaker gave an ambiguous utterance, many 3- to 6-year olds…

  5. Signal-to-Signal Ratio Independent Speaker Identification for Co-channel Speech Signals

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Saeidi, Rahim; Mowlaee, Pejman; Kinnunen, Tomi

    2010-01-01

    In this paper, we consider speaker identification for the co-channel scenario in which speech mixture from speakers is recorded by one microphone only. The goal is to identify both of the speakers from their mixed signal. High recognition accuracies have already been reported when an accurately...

  6. The (TNO) Speaker Diarization System for NIST Rich Transcription Evaluation 2005 for meeting data

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Leeuwen, D.A. van

    2005-01-01

    Abstract. The TNO speaker speaker diarization system is based on a standard BIC segmentation and clustering algorithm. Since for the NIST Rich Transcription speaker dizarization evaluation measure correct speech detection appears to be essential, we have developed a speech activity detector (SAD) as

  7. The TNO speaker diarization system for NIST RT05s meeting data

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Leeuwen, D.A. van

    2006-01-01

    The TNO speaker speaker diarization system is based on a standard BIC segmentation and clustering algorithm. Since for the NIST Rich Transcription speaker dizarization evaluation measure correct speech detection appears to be essential, we have developed a speech activity detector (SAD) as well.

  8. An acoustic analysis of English vowels produced by speakers of seven different native-language backgrounds

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Heuven, van V.J.J.P.; Gooskens, C.

    2017-01-01

    We measured F1, F2 and duration of ten English monophthongs produced by American native speakers and by Danish, Norwegian, Swedish, Dutch, Hungarian and Chinese L2 speakers. We hypothesized that (i) L2 speakers would approximate the English vowels more closely as the phonological distance between

  9. Business profile of metropolitan Las Vegas

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Boyle, M.R.

    1988-06-01

    This first report describes the present makeup of the Las Vegas metropolitan statistical area (MSA) economy and analyzes the climate for business expansion. The second report contains an assessment of the competitiveness of the area as a location for new or expanded facilities investment by companies in approximately 600 business groups. The third report projects Las Vegas' competitiveness at the start of the next century in the absence of a nuclear waste storage facility and then evaluates the potential impacts of siting that facility near Las Vegas on its ability to attract and retain business investment. The primary purpose of these reports is to contribute to the overall assessment of the environmental impact of the US Department of Energy's proposed action to build and operate an underground nuclear waste storage facility at Yucca Mountain. The first two reports also serve a second purpose -- they can be used by economic development organizations in the Las Vegas metropolitan area in their ongoing efforts to attract new business investment. Information contained in the business climate analysis found in this first report can be incorporated into marketing materials. The competitiveness assessment contained in the second report can be used by these organizations in identifying targets they wish to pursue

  10. Youthification in the Metropolitan Area of Cluj

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vlad Cocheci

    2018-06-01

    Full Text Available This research exercise aims to identify all areas affected by what is now known as ‘youthification’ in the Metropolitan Area of Cluj. Broadly speaking, an area touched by youthification witnesses a massive arrival of young adults, who invest in housing, but only remain there until they age. Youthification is usually the second phase within an encompassing process of gentrification. To gain a clearer picture of this phenomenon, we employed a snapshot of the situation recorded by the Population and Housing Census of 2011. Using this image as a starting point, we then applied statistical thresholds aimed at measuring the presence and intensity of youthification within different areas. Thereafter, we looked at areas exhibiting the same level of youthification, in order to find those common traits of their young adult inhabitants that might prove relevant for their choices in matters of housing. Once completed, our efforts resulted in the first map showing the areas affected by youthification within the Metropolitan Area of Cluj. In addition, we reached the following conclusion: Young adults who live in the city are more likely to still be enrolled in a form of education and less likely to be married or to have children than those who live in the suburbs or in rural areas. This observation implies that there might be some hidden dependency relations, which are at work in shaping the choice of housing.

  11. Energy efficiency: The Italian situation and opportunities

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Clerici, Alessandro; Beccarello, Massimo; Gallanti, Massimo

    2010-09-15

    The paper reports the results of a study led by Confindustria (Italian Federation of Industrial Associations) on the Italian situation with respect to energy efficiency policies and their effective implementations. The study is being continuously updated with the contributions of ENEA (Italian National Agency for New Technologies, Energy and Sustainable Economic Development) and ERSE (previously CESI Ricerca) and highlights the obtainable savings through efficient technologies now already available for applications in the final uses of energy for both the industrial, commercial and domestic sectors.

  12. 78 FR 53270 - Revision of Air Quality Implementation Plan; California; Sacramento Metropolitan Air Quality...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-08-29

    ... Quality Implementation Plan; California; Sacramento Metropolitan Air Quality Management District... to the Sacramento Metropolitan Air Quality Management District (SMAQMD or District) portion of the..., Sacramento Metropolitan Air Quality Management District, Rule 214 (Federal New Source Review), Rule 203...

  13. Willing Learners yet Unwilling Speakers in ESL Classrooms

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zuraidah Ali

    2007-12-01

    Full Text Available To some of us, speech production in ESL has become so natural and integral that we seem to take it for granted. We often do not even remember how we struggled through the initial process of mastering English. Unfortunately, to students who are still learning English, they seem to face myriad problems that make them appear unwilling or reluctant ESL speakers. This study will investigate this phenomenon which is very common in the ESL classroom. Setting its background on related research findings on this matter, a qualitative study was conducted among foreign students enrolled in the Intensive English Programme (IEP at Institute of Liberal Studies (IKAL, University Tenaga Nasional (UNITEN. The results will show and discuss an extent of truth behind this perplexing phenomenon: willing learners, yet unwilling speakers of ESL, in our effort to provide supportive learning cultures in second language acquisition (SLA to this group of students.

  14. Comparing headphone and speaker effects on simulated driving.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nelson, T M; Nilsson, T H

    1990-12-01

    Twelve persons drove for three hours in an automobile simulator while listening to music at sound level 63dB over stereo headphones during one session and from a dashboard speaker during another session. They were required to steer a mountain highway, maintain a certain indicated speed, shift gears, and respond to occasional hazards. Steering and speed control were dependent on visual cues. The need to shift and the hazards were indicated by sound and vibration effects. With the headphones, the driver's average reaction time for the most complex task presented--shifting gears--was about one-third second longer than with the speaker. The use of headphones did not delay the development of subjective fatigue.

  15. Variation among heritage speakers: Sequential vs. simultaneous bilinguals

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Teresa Lee

    2013-08-01

    Full Text Available This study examines the differences in the grammatical knowledge of two types of heritage speakers of Korean. Early simultaneous bilinguals are exposed to both English and the heritage language from birth, whereas early sequential bilinguals are exposed to the heritage language first and then to English upon schooling. A listening comprehension task involving relative clauses was conducted with 51 beginning-level Korean heritage speakers. The results showed that the early sequential bilinguals exhibited much more accurate knowledge than the early simultaneous bilinguals, who lacked rudimentary knowledge of Korean relative clauses. Drawing on the findings of adult and child Korean L1 data on the acquisition of relative clauses, the performance of each group is discussed with respect to attrition and incomplete acquisition of the heritage language.

  16. Facial Expression Generation from Speaker's Emotional States in Daily Conversation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mori, Hiroki; Ohshima, Koh

    A framework for generating facial expressions from emotional states in daily conversation is described. It provides a mapping between emotional states and facial expressions, where the former is represented by vectors with psychologically-defined abstract dimensions, and the latter is coded by the Facial Action Coding System. In order to obtain the mapping, parallel data with rated emotional states and facial expressions were collected for utterances of a female speaker, and a neural network was trained with the data. The effectiveness of proposed method is verified by a subjective evaluation test. As the result, the Mean Opinion Score with respect to the suitability of generated facial expression was 3.86 for the speaker, which was close to that of hand-made facial expressions.

  17. English exposed common mistakes made by Chinese speakers

    CERN Document Server

    Hart, Steve

    2017-01-01

    Having analysed the most common English errors made in over 600 academic papers written by Chinese undergraduates, postgraduates, and researchers, Steve Hart has written an essential, practical guide specifically for the native Chinese speaker on how to write good academic English. English Exposed: Common Mistakes Made by Chinese Speakers is divided into three main sections. The first section examines errors made with verbs, nouns, prepositions, and other grammatical classes of words. The second section focuses on problems of word choice. In addition to helping the reader find the right word, it provides instruction for selecting the right style too. The third section covers a variety of other areas essential for the academic writer, such as using punctuation, adding appropriate references, referring to tables and figures, and selecting among various English date and time phrases. Using English Exposed will allow a writer to produce material where content and ideas-not language mistakes-speak the loudest.

  18. Teaching English to speakers of other languages an introduction

    CERN Document Server

    Nunan, David

    2015-01-01

    David Nunan's dynamic learner-centered teaching style has informed and inspired countless TESOL educators around the world. In this fresh, straightforward introduction to teaching English to speakers of other languages he presents teaching techniques and procedures along with the underlying theory and principles. Complex theories and research studies are explained in a clear and comprehensible, yet non-trivial, manner without trivializing them. Practical examples of how to develop teaching materials and tasks from sound principles provide rich illustrations of theoretical constructs.

  19. Neural bases of congenital amusia in tonal language speakers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Caicai; Peng, Gang; Shao, Jing; Wang, William S-Y

    2017-03-01

    Congenital amusia is a lifelong neurodevelopmental disorder of fine-grained pitch processing. In this fMRI study, we examined the neural bases of congenial amusia in speakers of a tonal language - Cantonese. Previous studies on non-tonal language speakers suggest that the neural deficits of congenital amusia lie in the music-selective neural circuitry in the right inferior frontal gyrus (IFG). However, it is unclear whether this finding can generalize to congenital amusics in tonal languages. Tonal language experience has been reported to shape the neural processing of pitch, which raises the question of how tonal language experience affects the neural bases of congenital amusia. To investigate this question, we examined the neural circuitries sub-serving the processing of relative pitch interval in pitch-matched Cantonese level tone and musical stimuli in 11 Cantonese-speaking amusics and 11 musically intact controls. Cantonese-speaking amusics exhibited abnormal brain activities in a widely distributed neural network during the processing of lexical tone and musical stimuli. Whereas the controls exhibited significant activation in the right superior temporal gyrus (STG) in the lexical tone condition and in the cerebellum regardless of the lexical tone and music conditions, no activation was found in the amusics in those regions, which likely reflects a dysfunctional neural mechanism of relative pitch processing in the amusics. Furthermore, the amusics showed abnormally strong activation of the right middle frontal gyrus and precuneus when the pitch stimuli were repeated, which presumably reflect deficits of attending to repeated pitch stimuli or encoding them into working memory. No significant group difference was found in the right IFG in either the whole-brain analysis or region-of-interest analysis. These findings imply that the neural deficits in tonal language speakers might differ from those in non-tonal language speakers, and overlap partly with the

  20. MTGAN: Speaker Verification through Multitasking Triplet Generative Adversarial Networks

    OpenAIRE

    Ding, Wenhao; He, Liang

    2018-01-01

    In this paper, we propose an enhanced triplet method that improves the encoding process of embeddings by jointly utilizing generative adversarial mechanism and multitasking optimization. We extend our triplet encoder with Generative Adversarial Networks (GANs) and softmax loss function. GAN is introduced for increasing the generality and diversity of samples, while softmax is for reinforcing features about speakers. For simplification, we term our method Multitasking Triplet Generative Advers...

  1. Speech rate normalization used to improve speaker verification

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Van Heerden, CJ

    2006-11-01

    Full Text Available the normalized durations is then compared with the EER using unnormalized durations, and also with the EER when duration information is not employed. 2. Proposed phoneme duration modeling 2.1. Choosing parametric models Since the duration of a phoneme... the known transcription and the speaker-specific acoustic model described above. Only one pronunciation per word was allowed, thus resulting in 49 triphones. To decide which parametric model to use for the duration density func- tions of the triphones...

  2. Speaker Recognition for Mobile User Authentication: An Android Solution

    OpenAIRE

    Brunet , Kevin; Taam , Karim; Cherrier , Estelle; Faye , Ndiaga; Rosenberger , Christophe

    2013-01-01

    National audience; This paper deals with a biometric solution for authentication on mobile devices. Among the possible biometric modalities, speaker recognition seems the most natural choice for a mobile phone. This work lies in the continuation of our previous work \\cite{Biosig2012}, where we evaluated a candidate algorithm in terms of performance and time processing. The proposed solution is implemented here as an Android application. Its performances are evaluated both on a public database...

  3. 49 CFR 613.100 - Metropolitan transportation planning and programming.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-10-01

    ... programming. 613.100 Section 613.100 Transportation Other Regulations Relating to Transportation (Continued... Metropolitan Transportation Planning and Programming § 613.100 Metropolitan transportation planning and programming. The regulations in 23 CFR 450, subpart C, shall be followed in complying with the requirements of...

  4. Processing advantage for emotional words in bilingual speakers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ponari, Marta; Rodríguez-Cuadrado, Sara; Vinson, David; Fox, Neil; Costa, Albert; Vigliocco, Gabriella

    2015-10-01

    Effects of emotion on word processing are well established in monolingual speakers. However, studies that have assessed whether affective features of words undergo the same processing in a native and nonnative language have provided mixed results: Studies that have found differences between native language (L1) and second language (L2) processing attributed the difference to the fact that L2 learned late in life would not be processed affectively, because affective associations are established during childhood. Other studies suggest that adult learners show similar effects of emotional features in L1 and L2. Differences in affective processing of L2 words can be linked to age and context of learning, proficiency, language dominance, and degree of similarity between L2 and L1. Here, in a lexical decision task on tightly matched negative, positive, and neutral words, highly proficient English speakers from typologically different L1s showed the same facilitation in processing emotionally valenced words as native English speakers, regardless of their L1, the age of English acquisition, or the frequency and context of English use. (c) 2015 APA, all rights reserved).

  5. Online Italian fandoms of American TV shows

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eleonora Benecchi

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available The Internet has changed media fandom in two main ways: it helps fans connect with each other despite physical distance, leading to the formation of international fan communities; and it helps fans connect with the creators of the TV show, deepening the relationship between TV producers and international fandoms. To assess whether Italian fan communities active online are indeed part of transnational online communities and whether the Internet has actually altered their relationship with the creators of the original text they are devoted to, qualitative analysis and narrative interviews of 26 Italian fans of American TV shows were conducted to explore the fan-producer relationship. Results indicated that the online Italian fans surveyed preferred to stay local, rather than using geography-leveling online tools. Further, the sampled Italian fans' relationships with the show runners were mediated or even absent.

  6. The history of Italian psychiatry during Fascism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Piazzi, Andrea; Testa, Luana; Del Missier, Giovanni; Dario, Mariopaolo; Stocco, Ester

    2011-09-01

    Specific features characterized Italian psychiatry during Fascism (1922-45), distinguishing it from Nazi psychiatry and giving rise to different operational outcomes, so we have investigated the state of Italian psychiatry during this period. We review the historical situation that preceded it and describe the social and health policies that Fascism introduced following new legislative and regulatory acts. We examine the preventive and therapeutic role played by psychiatry (the electric shock was an Italian invention) and, thanks to the Enciclopedia Italiano published during those years, we are able to highlight psychiatry's relationship to psychology, psychoanalysis, philosophy and religion. The shortcomings of Italian psychiatric research and practice are also seen in terms of what the State failed to do rather than what it did.

  7. Semen quality of Italian local pig breeds

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    G. Gandini

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available From 1996 to 1999 a conservation programme was carried out within the framework of EC contract “European gene banking project for the pig genetic resources” (Ollivier et al., 2001 in the Italian local pig breeds. The aims of the program included the primary characterization of the breeds, i.e. information on the organization in charge of the breed, breeding population numbers, breed description and qualifications, and field trials on productive and reproductive performances. In this context the “Semen Bank of Italian local pig breeds” was built. A total of 30,835 straws of four Italian local pig breeds (Cinta Senese, Casertana, Mora Romagnola and Nero Siciliano, collected from 42 sires, have been stored. In this work semen quality traits, lipid composition and freezability of the four Italian local pig breeds are reported.

  8. Italian Validation of Homophobia Scale (HS)

    OpenAIRE

    Ciocca, Giacomo; Capuano, Nicolina; Tuziak, Bogdan; Mollaioli, Daniele; Limoncin, Erika; Valsecchi, Diana; Carosa, Eleonora; Gravina, Giovanni L.; Gianfrilli, Daniele; Lenzi, Andrea; Jannini, Emmanuele A.

    2015-01-01

    Introduction: The Homophobia Scale (HS) is a valid tool to assess homophobia. This test is self‐reporting, composed of 25 items, which assesses a total score and three factors linked to homophobia: behavior/negative affect, affect/behavioral aggression, and negative cognition. Aim: The aim of this study was to validate the HS in the Italian context. Methods: An Italian translation of the HS was carried out by two bilingual people, after which an English native translated the test back i...

  9. Social media marketing in Italian luxury fashion

    OpenAIRE

    Ananda, Artha Sejati; Hernández García, Ángel; Lamberti, Lucio

    2015-01-01

    Industries nowadays have been comfortable with the incorporation of social media to their marketing strategy. Italy has been known as a major center of the European fashion industry, a sector that is also following the social media marketing trends. This paper provides empirical findings on Italian luxury fashion brands? social media marketing activities. We present and analyze two case studies of Italian luxury fashion brands: Gucci and The Bridge (Il Ponte Pelletteria). Gucci is one of worl...

  10. Influence of Intimate Partner Violence on Domestic Relocation in Metropolitan and Non-Metropolitan Young Australian Women

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Dillon, Gina; Hussain, Rafat; Kibele, Eva; Rahman, Saifur; Loxton, Deborah

    2016-01-01

    Data from a national, population-based longitudinal study of Australian women (26-34 years) were analyzed to investigate the association between domestic relocation and multiple explanatory factors, namely intimate partner violence (IPV), metropolitan versus non-metropolitan residence, education,

  11. Inferring speaker attributes in adductor spasmodic dysphonia: ratings from unfamiliar listeners.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Isetti, Derek; Xuereb, Linnea; Eadie, Tanya L

    2014-05-01

    To determine whether unfamiliar listeners' perceptions of speakers with adductor spasmodic dysphonia (ADSD) differ from control speakers on the parameters of relative age, confidence, tearfulness, and vocal effort and are related to speaker-rated vocal effort or voice-specific quality of life. Twenty speakers with ADSD (including 6 speakers with ADSD plus tremor) and 20 age- and sex-matched controls provided speech recordings, completed a voice-specific quality-of-life instrument (Voice Handicap Index; Jacobson et al., 1997), and rated their own vocal effort. Twenty listeners evaluated speech samples for relative age, confidence, tearfulness, and vocal effort using rating scales. Listeners judged speakers with ADSD as sounding significantly older, less confident, more tearful, and more effortful than control speakers (p < .01). Increased vocal effort was strongly associated with decreased speaker confidence (rs = .88-.89) and sounding more tearful (rs = .83-.85). Self-rated speaker effort was moderately related (rs = .45-.52) to listener impressions. Listeners' perceptions of confidence and tearfulness were also moderately associated with higher Voice Handicap Index scores (rs = .65-.70). Unfamiliar listeners judge speakers with ADSD more negatively than control speakers, with judgments extending beyond typical clinical measures. The results have implications for counseling and understanding the psychosocial effects of ADSD.

  12. Consistency between verbal and non-verbal affective cues: a clue to speaker credibility.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gillis, Randall L; Nilsen, Elizabeth S

    2017-06-01

    Listeners are exposed to inconsistencies in communication; for example, when speakers' words (i.e. verbal) are discrepant with their demonstrated emotions (i.e. non-verbal). Such inconsistencies introduce ambiguity, which may render a speaker to be a less credible source of information. Two experiments examined whether children make credibility discriminations based on the consistency of speakers' affect cues. In Experiment 1, school-age children (7- to 8-year-olds) preferred to solicit information from consistent speakers (e.g. those who provided a negative statement with negative affect), over novel speakers, to a greater extent than they preferred to solicit information from inconsistent speakers (e.g. those who provided a negative statement with positive affect) over novel speakers. Preschoolers (4- to 5-year-olds) did not demonstrate this preference. Experiment 2 showed that school-age children's ratings of speakers were influenced by speakers' affect consistency when the attribute being judged was related to information acquisition (speakers' believability, "weird" speech), but not general characteristics (speakers' friendliness, likeability). Together, findings suggest that school-age children are sensitive to, and use, the congruency of affect cues to determine whether individuals are credible sources of information.

  13. The Italian Way to Carsharing

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Antonio Laurino

    2012-10-01

    Full Text Available Carsharing (CS is increasing its role worldwide as an alternative transport mode, often more sustainable than private transport with self-owned vehicles. We first focus on the main characteristics of those services and on the impacts they generated, starting from the analysis of  the literature on this topic. CS initiatives are growing everywhere, however numbers are still minor and impacts are still far from a level that can deliver significant aggregate benefits. This paper studies the existing Italian carsharing experiences, trying to understand its strengths, that have allowed its development, but also possible limits and weaknesses. The presence of a national coordination structure (Iniziativa Carsharing - ICS, unique in Europe and created to boost local initiatives providing standardisation and interoperability, surely helped the development of the system. Some initiatives have been successful in terms of membership (in particular Milan, Venice and Turin, but others have been discontinued. Italian users’ characteristics are similar to the ones of users abroad: the majority of users are well educated male, living in small households having one or no cars and using public transport every day. At present, Italian drivers generally still show a scarce propensity to share their cars, considered more as “goods” than as “services”. A case study in Milan, the first and most successful initiative in Italy, shows a significant increase in CS membership after the implementation of a city charging scheme (“Ecopass” at first, then “Area C”. Moving shared cars from garages to “on the street parking” has proved successful too. The usage of the service has changed in time: users have increased (+151% more than runs (+137% – 2006 to 2009, while average length and duration of each run have decreased (-30% and -43% respectively, 2006 to 2010. Milan’s initiative also put s into practice many incentives for users that likely

  14. An analysis of topics and vocabulary in Chinese oral narratives by normal speakers and speakers with fluent aphasia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Law, Sam-Po; Kong, Anthony Pak-Hin; Lai, Christy

    2018-01-01

    This study analysed the topic and vocabulary of Chinese speakers based on language samples of personal recounts in a large spoken Chinese database recently made available in the public domain, i.e. Cantonese AphasiaBank ( http://www.speech.hku.hk/caphbank/search/ ). The goal of the analysis is to offer clinicians a rich source for selecting ecologically valid training materials for rehabilitating Chinese-speaking people with aphasia (PWA) in the design and planning of culturally and linguistically appropriate treatments. Discourse production of 65 Chinese-speaking PWA of fluent types (henceforth, PWFA) and their non-aphasic controls narrating an important event in their life were extracted from Cantonese AphasiaBank. Analyses of topics and vocabularies in terms of part-of-speech, word frequency, lexical semantics, and diversity were conducted. There was significant overlap in topics between the two groups. While the vocabulary was larger for controls than that of PWFA as expected, they were similar in distribution across parts-of-speech, frequency of occurrence, and the ratio of concrete to abstract items in major open word classes. Moreover, proportionately more different verbs than nouns were employed at the individual level for both speaker groups. The findings provide important implications for guiding directions of aphasia rehabilitation not only of fluent but also non-fluent Chinese aphasic speakers.

  15. Revisiting vocal perception in non-human animals: a review of vowel discrimination, speaker voice recognition, and speaker normalization

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Buddhamas eKriengwatana

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available The extent to which human speech perception evolved by taking advantage of predispositions and pre-existing features of vertebrate auditory and cognitive systems remains a central question in the evolution of speech. This paper reviews asymmetries in vowel perception, speaker voice recognition, and speaker normalization in non-human animals – topics that have not been thoroughly discussed in relation to the abilities of non-human animals, but are nonetheless important aspects of vocal perception. Throughout this paper we demonstrate that addressing these issues in non-human animals is relevant and worthwhile because many non-human animals must deal with similar issues in their natural environment. That is, they must also discriminate between similar-sounding vocalizations, determine signaler identity from vocalizations, and resolve signaler-dependent variation in vocalizations from conspecifics. Overall, we find that, although plausible, the current evidence is insufficiently strong to conclude that directional asymmetries in vowel perception are specific to humans, or that non-human animals can use voice characteristics to recognize human individuals. However, we do find some indication that non-human animals can normalize speaker differences. Accordingly, we identify avenues for future research that would greatly improve and advance our understanding of these topics.

  16. Radon survey in Metropolitan Toronto schools

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Becker, E.; Moridi, R.

    1992-01-01

    The radon testing survey in Metropolitan Toronto public schools was the most intensive project of its kind ever undertaken in Canadian schools. It also included an extensive public education program on radiation and radon-in-schools. The radon levels at 632 schools were measured using the CAIRS Radon Monitors. Ninety percent of the locations measured were found to have a radon level equal to or less than 2 mWL. Two locations in two different schools were found to have a radon level at or above the Action Level (20 mWL). The remaining results were between the two extremes. Follow-up testing in those schools where more than 10 mWL of radon was found is in progress. (author)

  17. Suburbanization and sustainability in metropolitan Moscow.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mason, Robert J; Nigmatullina, Liliya

    2011-01-01

    Although Soviet-era urban-growth controls produced relatively sustainable metropolitan development patterns, low-density suburban sprawl has accelerated markedly in modern Russia. Distinctive features of Moscow's development history are its greenbelt, which dates from 1935 and is becoming increasingly fragmented, proliferation of satellite cities at the urban fringe, conversion of seasonal dachas into full-time residences, the very exclusive Rublevo Uspenskoe Highway development, and today's crippling traffic congestion. The recent economic crisis has slowed development and actually increased the supply of “economy-class” single-family homes, for which there is much pent-up desire but insufficient credit availability to meet the demand. A renewed commitment to sustainability's triple bottom line—environmental quality, equity, and economic prosperity—will require greater government transparency and fairness, stronger planning controls, and an expanded public transportation system.

  18. Coronal View Ultrasound Imaging of Movement in Different Segments of the Tongue during Paced Recital: Findings from Four Normal Speakers and a Speaker with Partial Glossectomy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bressmann, Tim; Flowers, Heather; Wong, Willy; Irish, Jonathan C.

    2010-01-01

    The goal of this study was to quantitatively describe aspects of coronal tongue movement in different anatomical regions of the tongue. Four normal speakers and a speaker with partial glossectomy read four repetitions of a metronome-paced poem. Their tongue movement was recorded in four coronal planes using two-dimensional B-mode ultrasound…

  19. A Study on Metadiscoursive Interaction in the MA Theses of the Native Speakers of English and the Turkish Speakers of English

    Science.gov (United States)

    Köroglu, Zehra; Tüm, Gülden

    2017-01-01

    This study has been conducted to evaluate the TM usage in the MA theses written by the native speakers (NSs) of English and the Turkish speakers (TSs) of English. The purpose is to compare the TM usage in the introduction, results and discussion, and conclusion sections by both groups' randomly selected MA theses in the field of ELT between the…

  20. Validation of the Italian version of the Laval questionnaire: health-related quality of life in subjects with obesity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Donini, Lorenzo Maria; Rosano, Aldo; Di Lazzaro, Luca; Poggiogalle, Eleonora; Lubrano, Carla; Migliaccio, Silvia; Carbonelli, Mariagrazia; Pinto, Alessandro; Lenzi, Andrea

    2017-05-15

    Obesity is associated to increased risk of metabolic comorbidity as well as increased mortality. Notably, obesity is also associated to the impairment of the psychological status and of quality of life. Only three questionnaires are available in the Italian language evaluating the health-related quality of life in subjects with obesity. The aim of the present study was to test the validity and reliability of the Italian version of the Laval Questionnaire. The original French version was translated into Italian and back-translated by a French native speaker. 273 subjects with obesity (Body Mass Index ≥ 30 kg/m 2 ) were enrolled; the Italian version of the Laval Questionnaire and the O.R.Well-97 questionnaire were administered in order to assess health- related quality of life. The Laval questionnaire consists of 44 items distributed in 6 domains (symptoms, activity/mobility, personal hygiene/clothing, emotions, social interaction, sexual life). Disability and overall psychopathology levels were assessed through the TSD-OC test (SIO test for obesity correlated disabilities) and the SCL-90 (Symptom Checklist-90) questionnaire, respectively. To verify the validity of the Italian version, the analysis of internal consistency, test-retest reliability, and construct validity were performed. The observed proportion of agreement concordance of results was 50.2% with Cohen's K = 0.336 (CI 95%: 0.267-0.404), indicating a fair agreement between the two tests. Test-retest correlation was statistically significant (ρ = 0.82; p  0.70). The analysis of construct validity showed a statistically significant association in terms of both total score (ρ = -0.66) and scores at each single domain (p obesity.

  1. "I May Be a Native Speaker but I'm Not Monolingual": Reimagining "All" Teachers' Linguistic Identities in TESOL

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ellis, Elizabeth M.

    2016-01-01

    Teacher linguistic identity has so far mainly been researched in terms of whether a teacher identifies (or is identified by others) as a native speaker (NEST) or nonnative speaker (NNEST) (Moussu & Llurda, 2008; Reis, 2011). Native speakers are presumed to be monolingual, and nonnative speakers, although by definition bilingual, tend to be…

  2. Word final schwa is driven by intonation-The case of Bari Italian.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grice, Martine; Savino, Michelina; Roettger, Timo B

    2018-04-01

    In order to convey pragmatic functions, a speaker has to select an intonation contour (the tune) in addition to the words that are to be spoken (the text). The tune and text are assumed to be independent of each other, such that any one intonation contour can be produced on different phrases, regardless of the number and nature of the segments they are made up of. However, if the segmental string is too short, certain tunes-especially those with a rising component-call for adjustments to the text. In Italian, for instance, loan words such as "chat" can be produced with a word final schwa when this word occurs at the end of a question. This paper investigates this word final schwa in the Bari variety in a number of different intonation contours. Although its presence and duration is to some extent dependent on idiosyncratic properties of speakers and words, schwa is largely conditioned by intonation. Schwa cannot thus be considered a mere phonetic artefact, since it is relevant for phonology, in that it facilitates the production of communicatively relevant intonation contours.

  3. Metropolitan migration and population growth in selected developing countries.

    Science.gov (United States)

    1983-01-01

    The purpose of this article is to estimate the components of metropolitan population growth in selected developing countries during 1960-1970 period. The study examines population growth in 26 cities: 5 are in Africa, 8 in Asia, and 13 in Latin America, using data from national census publications. These cities in general are the political capitals of their countries, but some additional large cities were selected in Brazil, Mexico, and South Africa. All cities, at the beginning of the 1960-1970 decade had over 500,000 population; Accra, the only exception, reached this population level during the 1960s. Some cities had over 4 million residents in 1970. Net migration contributed about 37% to total metropolitan population growth; the remainder of the growth is attributable to natural increase. Migration has a much stronger impact on metropolitan growth than suggested by the above figure: 1) Several metropolitan areas, for various reasons, are unlikely to receive many migrants; without those cities, the share of metropolitan growth from net migration is 44%. 2) Estimates of the natural increase of migrants after their arrival in the metropolitan areas, when added to migration itself, changes the total contribution of migration to 49% in some metropolitan areas. 3) Even where net migration contributes a smaller proportion to metropolitan growth than natural increase, the rates of net migration are generally high and should be viewed in the context of rapid metropolitan population growth from natural increase alone. Finally, the paper also compares the components of metropolitan growth with the components of growth in the remaining urban areas. The results show that the metropolitan areas, in general, grow faster than the remaining urban areas, and that this more rapid growth is mostly due to a higher rate of net migration. Given the significance of migration for metropolitan growth, further investigations of the effects of these migration streams, particularly with

  4. ‘New urbanism' or metropolitan-level centralization?

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Næss, Petter

    2011-01-01

    Based on a study in Copenhagen Metropolitan Area, this paper compares the influences of macro-level and micro-level urban form characteristics on the respondents' traveling distance by car on weekdays. The Copenhagen study shows that metropolitan-scale urban structural variables generally exert...... stronger influences than neighborhood-scale built environment characteristics on the amount of car travel. In particular, the location of the residence relative to the main city center of the metropolitan region shows a strong effect. Some local scale variables often mentioned in the literature...

  5. Shhh… I Need Quiet! Children's Understanding of American, British, and Japanese-accented English Speakers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bent, Tessa; Holt, Rachael Frush

    2018-02-01

    Children's ability to understand speakers with a wide range of dialects and accents is essential for efficient language development and communication in a global society. Here, the impact of regional dialect and foreign-accent variability on children's speech understanding was evaluated in both quiet and noisy conditions. Five- to seven-year-old children ( n = 90) and adults ( n = 96) repeated sentences produced by three speakers with different accents-American English, British English, and Japanese-accented English-in quiet or noisy conditions. Adults had no difficulty understanding any speaker in quiet conditions. Their performance declined for the nonnative speaker with a moderate amount of noise; their performance only substantially declined for the British English speaker (i.e., below 93% correct) when their understanding of the American English speaker was also impeded. In contrast, although children showed accurate word recognition for the American and British English speakers in quiet conditions, they had difficulty understanding the nonnative speaker even under ideal listening conditions. With a moderate amount of noise, their perception of British English speech declined substantially and their ability to understand the nonnative speaker was particularly poor. These results suggest that although school-aged children can understand unfamiliar native dialects under ideal listening conditions, their ability to recognize words in these dialects may be highly susceptible to the influence of environmental degradation. Fully adult-like word identification for speakers with unfamiliar accents and dialects may exhibit a protracted developmental trajectory.

  6. Speaker emotion recognition: from classical classifiers to deep neural networks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mezghani, Eya; Charfeddine, Maha; Nicolas, Henri; Ben Amar, Chokri

    2018-04-01

    Speaker emotion recognition is considered among the most challenging tasks in recent years. In fact, automatic systems for security, medicine or education can be improved when considering the speech affective state. In this paper, a twofold approach for speech emotion classification is proposed. At the first side, a relevant set of features is adopted, and then at the second one, numerous supervised training techniques, involving classic methods as well as deep learning, are experimented. Experimental results indicate that deep architecture can improve classification performance on two affective databases, the Berlin Dataset of Emotional Speech and the SAVEE Dataset Surrey Audio-Visual Expressed Emotion.

  7. Developing a Speaker Identification System for the DARPA RATS Project

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Plchot, O; Matsoukas, S; Matejka, P

    2013-01-01

    This paper describes the speaker identification (SID) system developed by the Patrol team for the first phase of the DARPA RATS (Robust Automatic Transcription of Speech) program, which seeks to advance state of the art detection capabilities on audio from highly degraded communication channels. ...... such as CFCCs out-perform MFCC front-ends on noisy audio, and (c) fusion of multiple systems provides 24% relative improvement in EER compared to the single best system when using a novel SVM-based fusion algorithm that uses side information such as gender, language, and channel id....

  8. Speaker comfort and increase of voice level in lecture rooms

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Brunskog, Jonas; Gade, Anders Christian; Bellester, G P

    2008-01-01

    Teachers often suffer health problems or tension related to their voice. These problems may be related to there working environment, including room acoustics of the lecture rooms which forces them to stress their voices. The present paper describes a first effort in finding relationships between...... were also measured in the rooms and subjective impressions from about 20 persons who had experience talking in these rooms were collected as well. Analysis of the data revealed significant differences in the sound power produced by the speaker in the different rooms. It was also found...

  9. Gender Identification of the Speaker Using VQ Method

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vasif V. Nabiyev

    2009-11-01

    Full Text Available Speaking is the easiest and natural form of communication between people. Intensive studies are made in order to provide this communication via computers between people. The systems using voice biometric technology are attracting attention especially in the angle of cost and usage. When compared with the other biometic systems the application is much more practical. For example by using a microphone placed in the environment voice record can be obtained even without notifying the user and the system can be applied. Moreover the remote access facility is one of the other advantages of voice biometry. In this study, it is aimed to automatically determine the gender of the speaker through the speech waves which include personal information. If the speaker gender can be determined while composing models according to the gender information, the success of voice recognition systems can be increased in an important degree. Generally all the speaker recognition systems are composed of two parts which are feature extraction and matching. Feature extraction is the procedure in which the least information presenting the speech and the speaker is determined through voice signal. There are different features used in voice applications such as LPC, MFCC and PLP. In this study as a feature vector MFCC is used. Feature mathcing is the procedure in which the features derived from unknown speakers and known speaker group are compared. According to the text used in comparison the system is devided to two parts that are text dependent and text independent. While the same text is used in text dependent systems, different texts are used in indepentent text systems. Nowadays, DTW and HMM are text dependent, VQ and GMM are text indepentent matching methods. In this study due to the high success ratio and simple application features VQ approach is used.In this study a system which determines the speaker gender automatically and text independent is proposed. The proposed

  10. Text-Independent Speaker Identification Using the Histogram Transform Model

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ma, Zhanyu; Yu, Hong; Tan, Zheng-Hua

    2016-01-01

    In this paper, we propose a novel probabilistic method for the task of text-independent speaker identification (SI). In order to capture the dynamic information during SI, we design a super-MFCCs features by cascading three neighboring Mel-frequency Cepstral coefficients (MFCCs) frames together....... These super-MFCC vectors are utilized for probabilistic model training such that the speaker’s characteristics can be sufficiently captured. The probability density function (PDF) of the aforementioned super-MFCCs features is estimated by the recently proposed histogram transform (HT) method. To recedes...

  11. Do children go for the nice guys? The influence of speaker benevolence and certainty on selective word learning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bergstra, Myrthe; DE Mulder, Hannah N M; Coopmans, Peter

    2018-04-06

    This study investigated how speaker certainty (a rational cue) and speaker benevolence (an emotional cue) influence children's willingness to learn words in a selective learning paradigm. In two experiments four- to six-year-olds learnt novel labels from two speakers and, after a week, their memory for these labels was reassessed. Results demonstrated that children retained the label-object pairings for at least a week. Furthermore, children preferred to learn from certain over uncertain speakers, but they had no significant preference for nice over nasty speakers. When the cues were combined, children followed certain speakers, even if they were nasty. However, children did prefer to learn from nice and certain speakers over nasty and certain speakers. These results suggest that rational cues regarding a speaker's linguistic competence trump emotional cues regarding a speaker's affective status in word learning. However, emotional cues were found to have a subtle influence on this process.

  12. Latin/Italian/French Comparison as to the Concept of Person and its Space

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Saffi Sophie

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available he comparison of three situations in Latin, Italian and French highlights a common operational process. i distribute the conceptions of space, person, gender, number and inter-subjectivity on the operative time of a radical space tensor which is divided into two successive stages of interiority and exteriority. Thus each first step in the process is a design that fuses interiority, feminine, internal plural, and symbiosis. The space location connected with the dialogical process, involving a symbiotic relationship between the speaker and the listener, corresponds from a historic point of view, when undergoing transitions from Latin to Italian, to a mark used during the first step. When no mark is used during the first stage, the process continues with a conception of the external space as in French. The implicit possession is representative of a system where the person has a extended personal sphere, typical of a symbiotic relationship to the environment and representative of language systems where the first step is existent. In this way, the purpose of the article is to demonstrate that a conception based on interiority has affinities with flexion, the one based on exteriority with the deflection. Therefore, the space criterion is a founder of the psychological and linguistic structures.

  13. Intestinal Parasites among Waste-Handlers in Jos Metropolitan Area ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Intestinal Parasites among Waste-Handlers in Jos Metropolitan Area of Plateau State, Nigeria. ... Solid waste management is associated with health hazards. ... Waste disposal workers are at high risk of infection with different species of ...

  14. Statewide and Metropolitan Transportation Planning Processes : a TPCB Peer Exchange

    Science.gov (United States)

    2016-04-20

    This report highlights key recommendations and noteworthy practices identified at Statewide and Metropolitan Transportation Planning Processes Peer Exchange held on September 9-10, 2015 in Shepherdstown, West Virginia. This event was sponsored ...

  15. The Halo surrounding native English speaker teachers in Indonesia

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Angga Kramadibrata

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available The Native Speaker Fallacy, a commonly held belief that Native English Speaker Teachers (NESTs are inherently better than Non-NESTs, has long been questioned by ELT researchers. However, this belief still stands strong in the general public. This research looks to understand how much a teacher’s nativeness affects a student’s attitude towards them, as well as the underlying reasons for their attitudes. Sixty seven respondents in two groups were asked to watch an animated teaching video, after which they completed a questionnaire that used Likert-scales to assess comprehensibility, clarity of explanation, engagement, and preference. The videos for both groups were identical apart from the narrator; one spoke in British English, while the other, Indian English. In addition, they were also visually identified as Caucasian and Asian, respectively. The video was controlled for speed of delivery. The quantitative data were then triangulated using qualitative data collected through open questions in the questionnaire as well as from a semi-structured interview conducted with 10 respondents. The data show that there is a significant implicit preference for NEST teachers in the video, as well as in respondent’s actual classes. However, when asked explicitly, respondents didn’t rank nativeness as a very important quality in English teachers. This discrepancy between implicit and explicit attitudes might be due to a subconscious cognitive bias, namely the Halo Effect, in which humans tend to make unjustified presumptions about a person based on known but irrelevant information.

  16. LEARNING VECTOR QUANTIZATION FOR ADAPTED GAUSSIAN MIXTURE MODELS IN AUTOMATIC SPEAKER IDENTIFICATION

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    IMEN TRABELSI

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available Speaker Identification (SI aims at automatically identifying an individual by extracting and processing information from his/her voice. Speaker voice is a robust a biometric modality that has a strong impact in several application areas. In this study, a new combination learning scheme has been proposed based on Gaussian mixture model-universal background model (GMM-UBM and Learning vector quantization (LVQ for automatic text-independent speaker identification. Features vectors, constituted by the Mel Frequency Cepstral Coefficients (MFCC extracted from the speech signal are used to train the New England subset of the TIMIT database. The best results obtained (90% for gender- independent speaker identification, 97 % for male speakers and 93% for female speakers for test data using 36 MFCC features.

  17. Does verbatim sentence recall underestimate the language competence of near-native speakers?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Judith eSchweppe

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available Verbatim sentence recall is widely used to test the language competence of native and non-native speakers since it involves comprehension and production of connected speech. However, we assume that, to maintain surface information, sentence recall relies particularly on attentional resources, which differentially affects native and non-native speakers. Since even in near-natives language processing is less automatized than in native speakers, processing a sentence in a foreign language plus retaining its surface may result in a cognitive overload. We contrasted sentence recall performance of German native speakers with that of highly proficient non-natives. Non-natives recalled the sentences significantly poorer than the natives, but performed equally well on a cloze test. This implies that sentence recall underestimates the language competence of good non-native speakers in mixed groups with native speakers. The findings also suggest that theories of sentence recall need to consider both its linguistic and its attentional aspects.

  18. Exploring American and Italian consumer preferences for Californian and Italian red wines.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Torri, Luisa; Noble, Ann Curtis; Heymann, Hildegarde

    2013-06-01

    To increase the market share of Californian wines in other countries, wine preferences need to be explored in potential markets. This work studied the preferences of American and Italian consumers for red wines produced in California and Italy, focusing on wines made from the same varieties in each location. Descriptive analysis and consumer preference tests were performed. Americans scored each of the Californian wines significantly higher in preference than the Italian wines. In contrast, the Italian consumer preference scores for many Italian and Californian wines overlapped. By external preference mapping of the American consumer segments, the ideal flavour of one cluster was closest to the Californian Zinfandel, Merlot and Syrah, which had the 'most balanced' flavour profiles. Another cluster of Italians also preferred the Californian wines. In addition, one Italian cluster was driven by a dislike of the leather, band-aid and medicinal aromas of the Italian Merlot and Refosco. The results provided information that can contribute to wine marketing research necessary for successfully exporting Californian red wines to Italy and vice versa. © 2012 Society of Chemical Industry.

  19. Towards a Metropolitan Fundamental Diagram Using Travel Survey Data

    Science.gov (United States)

    2016-01-01

    Using travel diary data from 2000–2001 and 2010–2012 this research examines fundamental traffic relationships at the metropolitan level. The results of this paper can help to explain the causes of some traffic phenomena. Network average speed by time of day can be explained by trip length and cumulative number of vehicles on the road. A clockwise hysteresis loop is found in the Metropolitan Fundamental Diagram in the morning period and a reverse process happens in the afternoon. PMID:26866913

  20. European energy policy and Italian national rights

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Gentile, G.G.

    1991-01-01

    In light of energy market upheavals expected as a result of the up-coming European free trade market, impacts on existing Italian energy legislation, currently hinging on the monopolistic activities of ENEL, (Italian National Electricity Board) are examined. The various aspects dealt with include: legal implications of the integration, under monopolistic and deregulated national energy market scenarios, of new legislation, on the production and distribution of renewable energy sources, with existing energy legislation; the combined effects of strong competition in a new international energy market and energy supply vulnerability due strong dependence on OPEC supplied petroleum; Italian regional economic unbalance due to the possible introduction, in a deregulated European electric power market, of a common carrier system of electric power distribution, that due to Italy's particular geography is expected to be controlled by a firm locatednear the northern border; power pooling legislation and rate structure transparency in a deregulated energy market

  1. Catholic Modernity and the Italian Constitution

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Thomassen, Bjørn; Forlenza, Rosario

    2016-01-01

    and give direction to the very idea of political modernity, bridging a positive encounter between Catholicism, democracy, and freedom. The specific argument is embedded within a larger aim to recognize attempts within Catholic philosophy and political thought to articulate a trajectory that moved away from......This article analyzes the Catholic contribution to the Italian republican and democratic Constitution of 1948. The focus is on the specific way in which the Italian citizen became symbolically coded as a ‘person’ and not as an ‘individual’, inspired by Catholic social philosophy. The Catholic...... project for the new Constitution had a considerable impact on modern Italian culture and politics and on the building of a modern mass democracy and welfare state. During the crucial historical juncture that followed the collapse of Fascism, Catholic politicians and intellectuals sought to interpret...

  2. Understanding metropolitan patterns of daily encounters.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sun, Lijun; Axhausen, Kay W; Lee, Der-Horng; Huang, Xianfeng

    2013-08-20

    Understanding of the mechanisms driving our daily face-to-face encounters is still limited; the field lacks large-scale datasets describing both individual behaviors and their collective interactions. However, here, with the help of travel smart card data, we uncover such encounter mechanisms and structures by constructing a time-resolved in-vehicle social encounter network on public buses in a city (about 5 million residents). Using a population scale dataset, we find physical encounters display reproducible temporal patterns, indicating that repeated encounters are regular and identical. On an individual scale, we find that collective regularities dominate distinct encounters' bounded nature. An individual's encounter capability is rooted in his/her daily behavioral regularity, explaining the emergence of "familiar strangers" in daily life. Strikingly, we find individuals with repeated encounters are not grouped into small communities, but become strongly connected over time, resulting in a large, but imperceptible, small-world contact network or "structure of co-presence" across the whole metropolitan area. Revealing the encounter pattern and identifying this large-scale contact network are crucial to understanding the dynamics in patterns of social acquaintances, collective human behaviors, and--particularly--disclosing the impact of human behavior on various diffusion/spreading processes.

  3. Italian singer Annalisa at CERN for a week of filming

    CERN Multimedia

    Stefania Pandolfi

    2015-01-01

    CERN welcomed Italian singer-songwriter Annalisa for a week-long visit to the Laboratory to shoot an Italian television production about the Laboratory.   Annalisa in the CERN Control Centre.   The Italian artist has a degree in physics from the University of Turin, Italy. She is a singer and songwriter, famous for her successful participation in the Italian talent show, Amici di Maria De Filippi. She has recorded four albums as solo artist and has participated twice in the Sanremo Music Festival, the most important Italian song contest. She has also received numerous Italian music awards, and has earned international recognition. Thanks to her knowledge of physics and her great influence with the Italian youth, Annalisa was selected to host an Italian television production about CERN aimed at young people. 

  4. PHRASEOLOGY IN PARČIĆ'S CROATIAN – ITALIAN DICTIONARY

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Helena Pavletić

    2005-01-01

    Full Text Available The paper analyzes and classifies the types of phraseological groups in Parčić's Croatian – Italian Dictionary comparing them with Italian equivalents and the contemporary Croatian phraseology.

  5. exiles/nomads: journeys through language and gender in italian ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    User

    how Italian women's (and men's) pulp fiction is written through gender specific ... by Santacroce's heroines to travel beyond the Italian boundaries, is not limited to the ..... The character's perception of his physical environment as silent and.

  6. A simple optical method for measuring the vibration amplitude of a speaker

    OpenAIRE

    UEDA, Masahiro; YAMAGUCHI, Toshihiko; KAKIUCHI, Hiroki; SUGA, Hiroshi

    1999-01-01

    A simple optical method has been proposed for measuring the vibration amplitude of a speaker vibrating with a frequency of approximately 10 kHz. The method is based on a multiple reflection between a vibrating speaker plane and a mirror parallel to that speaker plane. The multiple reflection can magnify a dispersion of the laser beam caused by the vibration, and easily make a measurement of the amplitude. The measuring sensitivity ranges between sub-microns and 1 mm. A preliminary experim...

  7. A general auditory bias for handling speaker variability in speech? Evidence in humans and songbirds

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Buddhamas eKriengwatana

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available Different speakers produce the same speech sound differently, yet listeners are still able to reliably identify the speech sound. How listeners can adjust their perception to compensate for speaker differences in speech, and whether these compensatory processes are unique only to humans, is still not fully understood. In this study we compare the ability of humans and zebra finches to categorize vowels despite speaker variation in speech in order to test the hypothesis that accommodating speaker and gender differences in isolated vowels can be achieved without prior experience with speaker-related variability. Using a behavioural Go/No-go task and identical stimuli, we compared Australian English adults’ (naïve to Dutch and zebra finches’ (naïve to human speech ability to categorize /ɪ/ and /ɛ/ vowels of an novel Dutch speaker after learning to discriminate those vowels from only one other speaker. Experiment 1 and 2 presented vowels of two speakers interspersed or blocked, respectively. Results demonstrate that categorization of vowels is possible without prior exposure to speaker-related variability in speech for zebra finches, and in non-native vowel categories for humans. Therefore, this study is the first to provide evidence for what might be a species-shared auditory bias that may supersede speaker-related information during vowel categorization. It additionally provides behavioural evidence contradicting a prior hypothesis that accommodation of speaker differences is achieved via the use of formant ratios. Therefore, investigations of alternative accounts of vowel normalization that incorporate the possibility of an auditory bias for disregarding inter-speaker variability are warranted.

  8. Initiatives towards Carbon Neutrality in the Helsinki Metropolitan Area

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Karna Dahal

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available Carbon neutrality represents one climate strategy adopted by many cities, including the city of Helsinki and the Helsinki metropolitan area in Finland. This study examines initiatives adopted by the Helsinki metropolitan area aimed at reducing energy-related carbon emissions and achieving carbon neutrality through future actions. Various sectorial energy consumption rates per year and carbon emissions from various sectors within the city of Helsinki and the metropolitan area were extracted from an online database and re-calculated (in GWh, MWh/inhabitant and MtCO2e, KtCO2e/inhabitant. We employed a backcasting scenario method to explore the various carbon reduction measures in the Helsinki metropolitan area. About 96% of the emissions produced in the Helsinki metropolitan area are energy-based. District heating represents the primary source of emissions, followed by transportation and electricity consumption, respectively. We also found that accomplishing the carbon reduction strategies of the Helsinki metropolitan area by 2050 remains challenging. Technological advancement for clean and renewable energy sources, smart policies and raising awareness resulting in behavioral changes greatly affect carbon reduction actions. Thus, strong political commitments are also required to formulate and implement stringent climate actions.

  9. Italian Validation of Homophobia Scale (HS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Giacomo Ciocca, PsyD, PhD

    2015-09-01

    Conclusions: The Italian validation of the HS revealed the use of this self‐report test to have good psychometric properties. This study offers a new tool to assess homophobia. In this regard, the HS can be introduced into the clinical praxis and into programs for the prevention of homophobic behavior. Ciocca G, Capuano N, Tuziak B, Mollaioli D, Limoncin E, Valsecchi D, Carosa E, Gravina GL, Gianfrilli D, Lenzi A, and Jannini EA. Italian validation of Homophobia Scale (HS. Sex Med 2015;3:213–218.

  10. Sensitivity to phonological context in L2 spelling: evidence from Russian ESL speakers

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Dich, Nadya

    2010-01-01

    The study attempts to investigate factors underlying the development of spellers’ sensitivity to phonological context in English. Native English speakers and Russian speakers of English as a second language (ESL) were tested on their ability to use information about the coda to predict the spelling...... on the information about the coda when spelling vowels in nonwords. In both native and non-native speakers, context sensitivity was predicted by English word spelling; in Russian ESL speakers this relationship was mediated by English proficiency. L1 spelling proficiency did not facilitate L2 context sensitivity...

  11. Effects of Language Background on Gaze Behavior: A Crosslinguistic Comparison Between Korean and German Speakers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goller, Florian; Lee, Donghoon; Ansorge, Ulrich; Choi, Soonja

    2017-01-01

    Languages differ in how they categorize spatial relations: While German differentiates between containment (in) and support (auf) with distinct spatial words—(a) den Kuli IN die Kappe stecken (”put pen in cap”); (b) die Kappe AUF den Kuli stecken (”put cap on pen”)—Korean uses a single spatial word (kkita) collapsing (a) and (b) into one semantic category, particularly when the spatial enclosure is tight-fit. Korean uses a different word (i.e., netha) for loose-fits (e.g., apple in bowl). We tested whether these differences influence the attention of the speaker. In a crosslinguistic study, we compared native German speakers with native Korean speakers. Participants rated the similarity of two successive video clips of several scenes where two objects were joined or nested (either in a tight or loose manner). The rating data show that Korean speakers base their rating of similarity more on tight- versus loose-fit, whereas German speakers base their rating more on containment versus support (in vs. auf). Throughout the experiment, we also measured the participants’ eye movements. Korean speakers looked equally long at the moving Figure object and at the stationary Ground object, whereas German speakers were more biased to look at the Ground object. Additionally, Korean speakers also looked more at the region where the two objects touched than did German speakers. We discuss our data in the light of crosslinguistic semantics and the extent of their influence on spatial cognition and perception. PMID:29362644

  12. A Comparison of Coverbal Gesture Use in Oral Discourse Among Speakers With Fluent and Nonfluent Aphasia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Law, Sam-Po; Chak, Gigi Wan-Chi

    2017-01-01

    Purpose Coverbal gesture use, which is affected by the presence and degree of aphasia, can be culturally specific. The purpose of this study was to compare gesture use among Cantonese-speaking individuals: 23 neurologically healthy speakers, 23 speakers with fluent aphasia, and 21 speakers with nonfluent aphasia. Method Multimedia data of discourse samples from these speakers were extracted from the Cantonese AphasiaBank. Gestures were independently annotated on their forms and functions to determine how gesturing rate and distribution of gestures differed across speaker groups. A multiple regression was conducted to determine the most predictive variable(s) for gesture-to-word ratio. Results Although speakers with nonfluent aphasia gestured most frequently, the rate of gesture use in counterparts with fluent aphasia did not differ significantly from controls. Different patterns of gesture functions in the 3 speaker groups revealed that gesture plays a minor role in lexical retrieval whereas its role in enhancing communication dominates among the speakers with aphasia. The percentages of complete sentences and dysfluency strongly predicted the gesturing rate in aphasia. Conclusions The current results supported the sketch model of language–gesture association. The relationship between gesture production and linguistic abilities and clinical implications for gesture-based language intervention for speakers with aphasia are also discussed. PMID:28609510

  13. Non-English speakers attend gastroenterology clinic appointments at higher rates than English speakers in a vulnerable patient population

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sewell, Justin L.; Kushel, Margot B.; Inadomi, John M.; Yee, Hal F.

    2009-01-01

    Goals We sought to identify factors associated with gastroenterology clinic attendance in an urban safety net healthcare system. Background Missed clinic appointments reduce the efficiency and availability of healthcare, but subspecialty clinic attendance among patients with established healthcare access has not been studied. Study We performed an observational study using secondary data from administrative sources to study patients referred to, and scheduled for an appointment in, the adult gastroenterology clinic serving the safety net healthcare system of San Francisco, California. Our dependent variable was whether subjects attended or missed a scheduled appointment. Analysis included multivariable logistic regression and classification tree analysis. 1,833 patients were referred and scheduled for an appointment between 05/2005 and 08/2006. Prisoners were excluded. All patients had a primary care provider. Results 683 patients (37.3%) missed their appointment; 1,150 (62.7%) attended. Language was highly associated with attendance in the logistic regression; non-English speakers were less likely than English speakers to miss an appointment (adjusted odds ratio 0.42 [0.28,0.63] for Spanish, 0.56 [0.38,0.82] for Asian language, p gastroenterology clinic appointment, not speaking English was most strongly associated with higher attendance rates. Patient related factors associated with not speaking English likely influence subspecialty clinic attendance rates, and these factors may differ from those affecting general healthcare access. PMID:19169147

  14. 75 FR 64611 - Italian American Heritage and Culture Month, 2010

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-10-19

    .... As we honor the long history and vast contributions of Italian Americans, let us recommit to... society and steer the course of our history. During Italian American Heritage and Culture Month, we... Culture Month. I call upon all Americans to learn more about the history of Italian Americans, and to...

  15. Internal audit risk management in metropolitan municipalities

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christo Ackermann

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available Internal audit functions (IAFs of organisations are regarded as crucial components of the combined assurance model, alongside the audit committee, management and external auditors. The combined assurance model aims at having integrated and aligned assurance in organisations with the overall aim of maximising risk and governance oversight and control efficiencies. In this regard, internal audit plays a crucial role, insofar as it consists of experts in risk, governance and control consultancy who provide assurance to senior management and the audit committee. Audit committees are dependent on internal audit for information and their effectiveness revolves around a strong and well-resourced internal audit function which is able to aid audit committees to meet their oversight responsibilities. There is thus a growing demand for managing risk through the process of risk management and internal audit is in a perfect position to assist with the improvement of such processes. If internal auditors wish to continue being an important aspect of the combined assurance model, they need to address the critical area, amongst others, of risk management as part of their work. If not, it follows that the board, audit committees and other levels of management will remain uninformed on the status of these matters which, in turn, will negatively impact the ability of these stakeholders to discharge their responsibilities. This study therefore focuses on analysing the functioning of IAFs, with specific reference to their risk management mandate. The study followed a mixed method approach to describe internal audits risk management functioning in the big eight metropolitan municipalities in South Africa. The results show that internal audit provide a broad scope of risk management work which assist senior management in the discharge of their responsibilities. However, in the public eye, internal audits risk management functioning is scant

  16. Self-Employment among Italian Female Graduates

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rosti, Luisa; Chelli, Francesco

    2009-01-01

    Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to investigate the gender impact of tertiary education on the probability of entering and remaining in self-employment. Design/methodology/approach: A data set on labour market flows produced by the Italian National Statistical Office is exploited by interviewing about 62,000 graduate and non-graduate…

  17. Stress Assignment in Reading Italian Polysyllabic Pseudowords

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sulpizio, Simone; Arduino, Lisa S.; Paizi, Despina; Burani, Cristina

    2013-01-01

    In 4 naming experiments we investigated how Italian readers assign stress to pseudowords. We assessed whether participants assign stress following distributional information such as stress neighborhood (the proportion and number of existent words sharing orthographic ending and stress pattern) and whether such distributional information affects…

  18. Italian retail gasoline activities: inadequate distribution network

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Verde, Stefano

    2005-01-01

    It is common belief that competition in the Italian retail gasoline activities is hindered by oil companies' collusive behaviour. However, when developing a broader analysis of the sector, low efficiency and scarce competition could results as the consequences coming from an inadequate distribution network and from the recognition of international markets and focal point [it

  19. Introduzione / Introduction | Guzzetta | Italian Studies in Southern ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Username, Password, Remember me, or Register. Introduzione / Introduction. G Guzzetta. Abstract. Identità Italiane In Movimento. Full Text: EMAIL FREE FULL TEXT EMAIL FREE FULL TEXT · DOWNLOAD FULL TEXT DOWNLOAD FULL TEXT · http://dx.doi.org/10.4314/issa.v21i1-2.43947 · AJOL African Journals Online.

  20. The Italian Footwear Industry: an Empirical Analysis

    OpenAIRE

    Pirolo, Luca; Giustiniano, Luca; Nenni, Maria Elena

    2013-01-01

    This paper aims to provide readers with a deep empirical analysis on the Italian footwear industry in order to investigate the evolution of its structure (trends in sales and production, number of firms and employees, main markets, etc.), together with the identification of the main drivers of competitiveness in order to explain the strategies implemented by local actors.

  1. Energy and competition in italian industry

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zanetti, G.

    2000-01-01

    The analysis of competition of the Italian production is based on the analysis of the prices. The most important period is between the first petroliferol crisis and these days. The production is concentrated on sector of old tradition and executed from an enterprise of small dimension [it

  2. Descriptive characteristics of the large Italian dams

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Dello Vicario, E.; Petaccia, A.; Savanella, V.

    1999-01-01

    In the present note the characteristics of the Italian dams are examined, underlining, in a statistical view, story, geographical location, types and use of the most important works. Such a review can be useful for a more detailed analysis, both for the dams characterization and for further studies relevant to water resources utilization [it

  3. Aerodynamic Characteristics of Syllable and Sentence Productions in Normal Speakers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thiel, Cedric; Yang, Jin; Crawley, Brianna; Krishna, Priya; Murry, Thomas

    2018-01-08

    Aerodynamic measures of subglottic air pressure (Ps) and airflow rate (AFR) are used to select behavioral voice therapy versus surgical treatment for voice disorders. However, these measures are usually taken during a series of syllables, which differs from conversational speech. Repeated syllables do not share the variation found in even simple sentences, and patients may use their best rather than typical voice unless specifically instructed otherwise. This study examined the potential differences in estimated Ps and AFR in syllable and sentence production and their effects on a measure of vocal efficiency in normal speakers. Prospective study. Measures of estimated Ps, AFR, and aerodynamic vocal efficiency (AVE) were obtained from 19 female and four male speakers ages 22-44 years with no history of voice disorders. Subjects repeated a series of /pa/ syllables and a sentence at comfortable effort level into a face mask with a pressure-sensing tube between the lips. AVE varies as a function of the speech material in normal subjects. Ps measures were significantly higher for the sentence-production samples than for the syllable-production samples. AFR was higher during sentence production than syllable production, but the difference was not statistically significant. AVE values were significantly higher for syllable versus sentence productions. The results suggest that subjects increase Ps and AFR in sentence compared with syllable production. Speaking task is a critical factor when considering measures of AVE, and this preliminary study provides a basis for further aerodynamic studies of patient populations. Copyright © 2017 The Voice Foundation. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  4. Audio-Visual Speaker Diarization Based on Spatiotemporal Bayesian Fusion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gebru, Israel D; Ba, Sileye; Li, Xiaofei; Horaud, Radu

    2018-05-01

    Speaker diarization consists of assigning speech signals to people engaged in a dialogue. An audio-visual spatiotemporal diarization model is proposed. The model is well suited for challenging scenarios that consist of several participants engaged in multi-party interaction while they move around and turn their heads towards the other participants rather than facing the cameras and the microphones. Multiple-person visual tracking is combined with multiple speech-source localization in order to tackle the speech-to-person association problem. The latter is solved within a novel audio-visual fusion method on the following grounds: binaural spectral features are first extracted from a microphone pair, then a supervised audio-visual alignment technique maps these features onto an image, and finally a semi-supervised clustering method assigns binaural spectral features to visible persons. The main advantage of this method over previous work is that it processes in a principled way speech signals uttered simultaneously by multiple persons. The diarization itself is cast into a latent-variable temporal graphical model that infers speaker identities and speech turns, based on the output of an audio-visual association process, executed at each time slice, and on the dynamics of the diarization variable itself. The proposed formulation yields an efficient exact inference procedure. A novel dataset, that contains audio-visual training data as well as a number of scenarios involving several participants engaged in formal and informal dialogue, is introduced. The proposed method is thoroughly tested and benchmarked with respect to several state-of-the art diarization algorithms.

  5. Italian and Russian Verse: Two Cultures and Two Mentalities

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stefano Garzonio

    2006-12-01

    Full Text Available Italian and Russian Verse: Two Cultures and Two Mentalities The present text was given as a talk at Stanford University in 2003. Here the author presents a comparative analysis of Russian and Italian versification and pays attention to the cultural contacts between these two poetical traditions in an effort to define the role played by Italian patterns in Russian verse. In this perspective the author offers a history of Russian poetical translation of Italian texts pointing out the different opinions of Russian poets about the “musicality” of Italian verse. The combined influence of language and culture in modelling different Russian poetical forms in a chronological perspective is underlined.

  6. Xerostomia Quality of Life Scale (XeQoLS) questionnaire: validation of Italian version in head and neck cancer patients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lastrucci, Luciana; Bertocci, Silvia; Bini, Vittorio; Borghesi, Simona; De Majo, Roberta; Rampini, Andrea; Gennari, Pietro Giovanni; Pernici, Paola

    2018-01-01

    To translate the Xerostomia Quality-of-Life Scale (XeQoLS) into Italian language (XeQoLS-IT). Xerostomia is the most relevant acute and late toxicity in patients with head and neck cancer treated with radiotherapy (RT). Patient-reported outcome (PRO) instruments are subjective report on patient perception of health status. The XeQoLS consists of 15 items and measures the impact of salivary gland dysfunction and xerostomia on the four major domains of oral health-related QoL. The XeQoLS-IT was created through a linguistic validation multi-step process: forward translation (TF), backward translation (TB) and administration of the questionnaire to 35 Italian patients with head and neck cancer. Translation was independently carried out by two radiation oncologists who were Italian native speakers. The two versions were compared and adapted to obtain a reconciled version, version 1 (V1). V1 was translated back into English by an Italian pro skilled in teaching English. After review of discrepancies and choice of the most appropriate wording for clarity and similarity to the original, version 2 (V2) was reached by consensus. To evaluate version 2, patients completed the XeQoLS-IT questionnaire and also underwent a cognitive debriefing. The questionnaire was considered simple by the patients. The clarity of the instructions and the easiness to answer questions had a mean value of 4.5 (± 0.71) on a scale from 1 to 5. A valid multi-step process led to the creation of the final version of the XeQoLS-IT, a suitable instrument for the perception of xerostomia in patients treated with RT.

  7. Psychophysical Boundary for Categorization of Voiced-Voiceless Stop Consonants in Native Japanese Speakers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tamura, Shunsuke; Ito, Kazuhito; Hirose, Nobuyuki; Mori, Shuji

    2018-01-01

    Purpose: The purpose of this study was to investigate the psychophysical boundary used for categorization of voiced-voiceless stop consonants in native Japanese speakers. Method: Twelve native Japanese speakers participated in the experiment. The stimuli were synthetic stop consonant-vowel stimuli varying in voice onset time (VOT) with…

  8. White Native English Speakers Needed: The Rhetorical Construction of Privilege in Online Teacher Recruitment Spaces

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ruecker, Todd; Ives, Lindsey

    2015-01-01

    Over the past few decades, scholars have paid increasing attention to the role of native speakerism in the field of TESOL. Several recent studies have exposed instances of native speakerism in TESOL recruitment discourses published through a variety of media, but none have focused specifically on professional websites advertising programs in…

  9. Within-category variance and lexical tone discrimination in native and non-native speakers

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hoffmann, C.W.G.; Sadakata, M.; Chen, A.; Desain, P.W.M.; McQueen, J.M.; Gussenhove, C.; Chen, Y.; Dediu, D.

    2014-01-01

    In this paper, we show how acoustic variance within lexical tones in disyllabic Mandarin Chinese pseudowords affects discrimination abilities in both native and non-native speakers of Mandarin Chinese. Within-category acoustic variance did not hinder native speakers in discriminating between lexical

  10. Content-specific coordination of listeners' to speakers' EEG during communication.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kuhlen, Anna K; Allefeld, Carsten; Haynes, John-Dylan

    2012-01-01

    Cognitive neuroscience has recently begun to extend its focus from the isolated individual mind to two or more individuals coordinating with each other. In this study we uncover a coordination of neural activity between the ongoing electroencephalogram (EEG) of two people-a person speaking and a person listening. The EEG of one set of twelve participants ("speakers") was recorded while they were narrating short stories. The EEG of another set of twelve participants ("listeners") was recorded while watching audiovisual recordings of these stories. Specifically, listeners watched the superimposed videos of two speakers simultaneously and were instructed to attend either to one or the other speaker. This allowed us to isolate neural coordination due to processing the communicated content from the effects of sensory input. We find several neural signatures of communication: First, the EEG is more similar among listeners attending to the same speaker than among listeners attending to different speakers, indicating that listeners' EEG reflects content-specific information. Secondly, listeners' EEG activity correlates with the attended speakers' EEG, peaking at a time delay of about 12.5 s. This correlation takes place not only between homologous, but also between non-homologous brain areas in speakers and listeners. A semantic analysis of the stories suggests that listeners coordinate with speakers at the level of complex semantic representations, so-called "situation models". With this study we link a coordination of neural activity between individuals directly to verbally communicated information.

  11. Are Cantonese-Speakers Really Descriptivists? Revisiting Cross-Cultural Semantics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lam, Barry

    2010-01-01

    In an article in "Cognition" [Machery, E., Mallon, R., Nichols, S., & Stich, S. (2004). "Semantics cross-cultural style." "Cognition, 92", B1-B12] present data which purports to show that East Asian Cantonese-speakers tend to have descriptivist intuitions about the referents of proper names, while Western English-speakers tend to have…

  12. Automaticity and stability of adaptation to a foreign-accented speaker

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Witteman, M.J.; Bardhan, N.P.; Weber, A.C.; McQueen, J.M.

    2015-01-01

    In three cross-modal priming experiments we asked whether adaptation to a foreign-accented speaker is automatic, and whether adaptation can be seen after a long delay between initial exposure and test. Dutch listeners were exposed to a Hebrew-accented Dutch speaker with two types of Dutch words:

  13. Congenital Amusia in Speakers of a Tone Language: Association with Lexical Tone Agnosia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nan, Yun; Sun, Yanan; Peretz, Isabelle

    2010-01-01

    Congenital amusia is a neurogenetic disorder that affects the processing of musical pitch in speakers of non-tonal languages like English and French. We assessed whether this musical disorder exists among speakers of Mandarin Chinese who use pitch to alter the meaning of words. Using the Montreal Battery of Evaluation of Amusia, we tested 117…

  14. 7 CFR 247.13 - Provisions for non-English or limited-English speakers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 4 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false Provisions for non-English or limited-English speakers... § 247.13 Provisions for non-English or limited-English speakers. (a) What must State and local agencies do to ensure that non-English or limited-English speaking persons are aware of their rights and...

  15. Comprehending non-native speakers: theory and evidence for adjustment in manner of processing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lev-Ari, Shiri

    2014-01-01

    Non-native speakers have lower linguistic competence than native speakers, which renders their language less reliable in conveying their intentions. We suggest that expectations of lower competence lead listeners to adapt their manner of processing when they listen to non-native speakers. We propose that listeners use cognitive resources to adjust by increasing their reliance on top-down processes and extracting less information from the language of the non-native speaker. An eye-tracking study supports our proposal by showing that when following instructions by a non-native speaker, listeners make more contextually-induced interpretations. Those with relatively high working memory also increase their reliance on context to anticipate the speaker's upcoming reference, and are less likely to notice lexical errors in the non-native speech, indicating that they take less information from the speaker's language. These results contribute to our understanding of the flexibility in language processing and have implications for interactions between native and non-native speakers.

  16. Popular Public Discourse at Speakers' Corner: Negotiating Cultural Identities in Interaction

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    McIlvenny, Paul

    1996-01-01

    , religious and general topical 'soap-box' oration. However, audiences are not passive receivers of rhetorical messages. They are active negotiators of interpretations and alignments that may conflict with the speaker's and other audience members' orientations to prior talk. Speakers' Corner is a space...

  17. The Acquisition of Clitic Pronouns in the Spanish Interlanguage of Peruvian Quechua Speakers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klee, Carol A.

    1989-01-01

    Analysis of four adult Quechua speakers' acquisition of clitic pronouns in Spanish revealed that educational attainment and amount of contact with monolingual Spanish speakers were positively related to native-like norms of competence in the use of object pronouns in Spanish. (CB)

  18. Intelligibility of Standard German and Low German to Speakers of Dutch

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Gooskens, C.S.; Kürschner, Sebastian; van Bezooijen, R.

    2011-01-01

    This paper reports on the intelligibility of spoken Low German and Standard German for speakers of Dutch. Two aspects are considered. First, the relative potential for intelligibility of the Low German variety of Bremen and the High German variety of Modern Standard German for speakers of Dutch is

  19. Pragmatic Instruction May Not Be Necessary among Heritage Speakers of Spanish: A Study on Requests

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barros García, María J.; Bachelor, Jeremy W.

    2018-01-01

    This paper studies the pragmatic competence of U.S. heritage speakers of Spanish in an attempt to determine (a) the degree of pragmatic transfer from English to Spanish experienced by heritage speakers when producing different types of requests in Spanish; and (b) how to best teach pragmatics to students of Spanish as a Heritage Language (SHL).…

  20. Bridging Gaps in Common Ground: Speakers Design Their Gestures for Their Listeners

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hilliard, Caitlin; Cook, Susan Wagner

    2016-01-01

    Communication is shaped both by what we are trying to say and by whom we are saying it to. We examined whether and how shared information influences the gestures speakers produce along with their speech. Unlike prior work examining effects of common ground on speech and gesture, we examined a situation in which some speakers have the same amount…

  1. Classifications of Vocalic Segments from Articulatory Kinematics: Healthy Controls and Speakers with Dysarthria

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yunusova, Yana; Weismer, Gary G.; Lindstrom, Mary J.

    2011-01-01

    Purpose: In this study, the authors classified vocalic segments produced by control speakers (C) and speakers with dysarthria due to amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) or Parkinson's disease (PD); classification was based on movement measures. The researchers asked the following questions: (a) Can vowels be classified on the basis of selected…

  2. Articulatory Movements during Vowels in Speakers with Dysarthria and Healthy Controls

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yunusova, Yana; Weismer, Gary; Westbury, John R.; Lindstrom, Mary J.

    2008-01-01

    Purpose: This study compared movement characteristics of markers attached to the jaw, lower lip, tongue blade, and dorsum during production of selected English vowels by normal speakers and speakers with dysarthria due to amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) or Parkinson disease (PD). The study asked the following questions: (a) Are movement…

  3. Speaker Input Variability Does Not Explain Why Larger Populations Have Simpler Languages.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Atkinson, Mark; Kirby, Simon; Smith, Kenny

    2015-01-01

    A learner's linguistic input is more variable if it comes from a greater number of speakers. Higher speaker input variability has been shown to facilitate the acquisition of phonemic boundaries, since data drawn from multiple speakers provides more information about the distribution of phonemes in a speech community. It has also been proposed that speaker input variability may have a systematic influence on individual-level learning of morphology, which can in turn influence the group-level characteristics of a language. Languages spoken by larger groups of people have less complex morphology than those spoken in smaller communities. While a mechanism by which the number of speakers could have such an effect is yet to be convincingly identified, differences in speaker input variability, which is thought to be larger in larger groups, may provide an explanation. By hindering the acquisition, and hence faithful cross-generational transfer, of complex morphology, higher speaker input variability may result in structural simplification. We assess this claim in two experiments which investigate the effect of such variability on language learning, considering its influence on a learner's ability to segment a continuous speech stream and acquire a morphologically complex miniature language. We ultimately find no evidence to support the proposal that speaker input variability influences language learning and so cannot support the hypothesis that it explains how population size determines the structural properties of language.

  4. A general auditory bias for handling speaker variability in speech? Evidence in humans and songbirds

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kriengwatana, B.; Escudero, P.; Kerkhoven, A.H.; ten Cate, C.

    2015-01-01

    Different speakers produce the same speech sound differently, yet listeners are still able to reliably identify the speech sound. How listeners can adjust their perception to compensate for speaker differences in speech, and whether these compensatory processes are unique only to humans, is still

  5. Speaker detection for conversational robots using synchrony between audio and video

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Noulas, A.; Englebienne, G.; Terwijn, B.; Kröse, B.; Hanheide, M.; Zender, H.

    2010-01-01

    This paper compares different methods for detecting the speaking person when multiple persons are interacting with a robot. We evaluate the state-of-the-art speaker detection methods on the iCat robot. These methods use the synchrony between audio and video to locate the most probable speaker. We

  6. Use of the BAT with a Cantonese-Putonghua Speaker with Aphasia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kong, Anthony Pak-Hin; Weekes, Brendan Stuart

    2011-01-01

    The aim of this article is to illustrate the use of the Bilingual Aphasia Test (BAT) with a Cantonese-Putonghua speaker. We describe G, who is a relatively young Chinese bilingual speaker with aphasia. G's communication abilities in his L2, Putonghua, were impaired following brain damage. This impairment caused specific difficulties in…

  7. During Threaded Discussions Are Non-Native English Speakers Always at a Disadvantage?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shafer Willner, Lynn

    2014-01-01

    When participating in threaded discussions, under what conditions might non¬native speakers of English (NNSE) be at a comparative disadvantage to their classmates who are native speakers of English (NSE)? This study compares the threaded discussion perspectives of closely-matched NNSE and NSE adult students having different levels of threaded…

  8. Promoting Communities of Practice among Non-Native Speakers of English in Online Discussions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Hoe Kyeung

    2011-01-01

    An online discussion involving text-based computer-mediated communication has great potential for promoting equal participation among non-native speakers of English. Several studies claimed that online discussions could enhance the academic participation of non-native speakers of English. However, there is little research around participation…

  9. The AMI speaker diarization system for NIST RT06s meeting data

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Leeuwen, D.A. van; Huijbregts, Marijn

    2006-01-01

    We describe the systems submitted to the NIST RT06s evaluation for the Speech Activity Detection (SAD) and Speaker Diarization (SPKR) tasks. For speech activity detection, a new analysis methodology is presented that generalizes the Detection Erorr Tradeoff analysis commonly used in speaker

  10. The AMI speaker diarization system for NIST RT06s meeting data

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van Leeuwen, David A.; Huijbregts, M.A.H.

    2007-01-01

    We describe the systems submitted to the NIST RT06s evaluation for the Speech Activity Detection (SAD) and Speaker Diarization (SPKR) tasks. For speech activity detection, a new analysis methodology is presented that generalizes the Detection Erorr Tradeoff analysis commonly used in speaker detection

  11. Omission of definite and indefinite articles in the spontaneous speech of agrammatic speakers with Broca's aphasia

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Havik, E.; Bastiaanse, Y.R.M.

    2004-01-01

    Background: Cross-linguistic investigation of agrammatic speech in speakers of different languages allows us to tests theoretical accounts of the nature of agrammatism. A significant feature of the speech of many agrammatic speakers is a problem with article production. Mansson and Ahlsen (2001)

  12. Learning foreign labels from a foreign speaker: the role of (limited) exposure to a second language.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Akhtar, Nameera; Menjivar, Jennifer; Hoicka, Elena; Sabbagh, Mark A

    2012-11-01

    Three- and four-year-olds (N = 144) were introduced to novel labels by an English speaker and a foreign speaker (of Nordish, a made-up language), and were asked to endorse one of the speaker's labels. Monolingual English-speaking children were compared to bilingual children and English-speaking children who were regularly exposed to a language other than English. All children tended to endorse the English speaker's labels when asked 'What do you call this?', but when asked 'What do you call this in Nordish?', children with exposure to a second language were more likely to endorse the foreign label than monolingual and bilingual children. The findings suggest that, at this age, exposure to, but not necessarily immersion in, more than one language may promote the ability to learn foreign words from a foreign speaker.

  13. A Joint Approach for Single-Channel Speaker Identification and Speech Separation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Mowlaee, Pejman; Saeidi, Rahim; Christensen, Mads Græsbøll

    2012-01-01

    ) accuracy, here, we report the objective and subjective results as well. The results show that the proposed system performs as well as the best of the state-of-the-art in terms of perceived quality while its performance in terms of speaker identification and automatic speech recognition results......In this paper, we present a novel system for joint speaker identification and speech separation. For speaker identification a single-channel speaker identification algorithm is proposed which provides an estimate of signal-to-signal ratio (SSR) as a by-product. For speech separation, we propose...... a sinusoidal model-based algorithm. The speech separation algorithm consists of a double-talk/single-talk detector followed by a minimum mean square error estimator of sinusoidal parameters for finding optimal codevectors from pre-trained speaker codebooks. In evaluating the proposed system, we start from...

  14. Speaker and Accent Variation Are Handled Differently: Evidence in Native and Non-Native Listeners

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kriengwatana, Buddhamas; Terry, Josephine; Chládková, Kateřina; Escudero, Paola

    2016-01-01

    Listeners are able to cope with between-speaker variability in speech that stems from anatomical sources (i.e. individual and sex differences in vocal tract size) and sociolinguistic sources (i.e. accents). We hypothesized that listeners adapt to these two types of variation differently because prior work indicates that adapting to speaker/sex variability may occur pre-lexically while adapting to accent variability may require learning from attention to explicit cues (i.e. feedback). In Experiment 1, we tested our hypothesis by training native Dutch listeners and Australian-English (AusE) listeners without any experience with Dutch or Flemish to discriminate between the Dutch vowels /I/ and /ε/ from a single speaker. We then tested their ability to classify /I/ and /ε/ vowels of a novel Dutch speaker (i.e. speaker or sex change only), or vowels of a novel Flemish speaker (i.e. speaker or sex change plus accent change). We found that both Dutch and AusE listeners could successfully categorize vowels if the change involved a speaker/sex change, but not if the change involved an accent change. When AusE listeners were given feedback on their categorization responses to the novel speaker in Experiment 2, they were able to successfully categorize vowels involving an accent change. These results suggest that adapting to accents may be a two-step process, whereby the first step involves adapting to speaker differences at a pre-lexical level, and the second step involves adapting to accent differences at a contextual level, where listeners have access to word meaning or are given feedback that allows them to appropriately adjust their perceptual category boundaries. PMID:27309889

  15. Speaker Introductions at Internal Medicine Grand Rounds: Forms of Address Reveal Gender Bias.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Files, Julia A; Mayer, Anita P; Ko, Marcia G; Friedrich, Patricia; Jenkins, Marjorie; Bryan, Michael J; Vegunta, Suneela; Wittich, Christopher M; Lyle, Melissa A; Melikian, Ryan; Duston, Trevor; Chang, Yu-Hui H; Hayes, Sharonne N

    2017-05-01

    Gender bias has been identified as one of the drivers of gender disparity in academic medicine. Bias may be reinforced by gender subordinating language or differential use of formality in forms of address. Professional titles may influence the perceived expertise and authority of the referenced individual. The objective of this study is to examine how professional titles were used in the same and mixed-gender speaker introductions at Internal Medicine Grand Rounds (IMGR). A retrospective observational study of video-archived speaker introductions at consecutive IMGR was conducted at two different locations (Arizona, Minnesota) of an academic medical center. Introducers and speakers at IMGR were physician and scientist peers holding MD, PhD, or MD/PhD degrees. The primary outcome was whether or not a speaker's professional title was used during the first form of address during speaker introductions at IMGR. As secondary outcomes, we evaluated whether or not the speakers professional title was used in any form of address during the introduction. Three hundred twenty-one forms of address were analyzed. Female introducers were more likely to use professional titles when introducing any speaker during the first form of address compared with male introducers (96.2% [102/106] vs. 65.6% [141/215]; p form of address 97.8% (45/46) compared with male dyads who utilized a formal title 72.4% (110/152) of the time (p = 0.007). In mixed-gender dyads, where the introducer was female and speaker male, formal titles were used 95.0% (57/60) of the time. Male introducers of female speakers utilized professional titles 49.2% (31/63) of the time (p addressed by professional title than were men introduced by men. Differential formality in speaker introductions may amplify isolation, marginalization, and professional discomfiture expressed by women faculty in academic medicine.

  16. The food environment and adult obesity in US metropolitan areas.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Michimi, Akihiko; Wimberly, Michael C

    2015-11-26

    This research examines the larger-scale associations between obesity and food environments in metropolitan areas in the United States (US). The US Census County Business Patterns dataset for 2011 was used to construct various indices of food environments for selected metropolitan areas. The numbers of employees engaged in supermarkets, convenience stores, full service restaurants, fast food restaurants, and snack/coffee shops were standardised using the location quotients, and factor analysis was used to produce two uncorrelated factors measuring food environments. Data on obesity were obtained from the 2011 Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System. Individual level obesity measures were linked to the metropolitan area level food environment factors. Models were fitted using generalised estimating equations to control for metropolitan area level intra-correlation and individual level sociodemographic characteristics. It was found that adults residing in cities with a large share of supermarket and full-service restaurant workers were less likely to be obese, while adults residing in cities with a large share of convenience store and fast food restaurant workers were more likely to be obese. Supermarkets and full-service restaurant workers are concentrated in the Northeast and West of the US, where obesity prevalence is relatively lower, while convenience stores and fast-food restaurant workers are concentrated in the South and Midwest, where obesity prevalence is relatively higher. The food environment landscapes measured at the metropolitan area level explain the continental-scale patterns of obesity prevalence. The types of food that are readily available and widely served may translate into obesity disparities across metropolitan areas.

  17. Printing activity of the Metropolitan Gavriil Banulescu Bodoni

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nicolae Fustei

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available The present study is dedicated to the printing activity of the Metropolitan Gavriil Bănulescu-Bodoni’s activity. The religious and secular prints made from Chisinau’s Diocesan typography by Metropolitan Gavriil promote the idea of national unity of people from Moldavia, Wallachia and Transylvania. Due to the new documents from archives, more evidences and „more light” are being spread over the activity of famous hierarch, whose life is linked with the history of culture of three nations – Romanians, Ukrainians and Russians.

  18. 22nd Italian Workshop on Neural Nets

    CERN Document Server

    Bassis, Simone; Esposito, Anna; Morabito, Francesco

    2013-01-01

    This volume collects a selection of contributions which has been presented at the 22nd Italian Workshop on Neural Networks, the yearly meeting of the Italian Society for Neural Networks (SIREN). The conference was held in Italy, Vietri sul Mare (Salerno), during May 17-19, 2012. The annual meeting of SIREN is sponsored by International Neural Network Society (INNS), European Neural Network Society (ENNS) and IEEE Computational Intelligence Society (CIS). The book – as well as the workshop-  is organized in three main components, two special sessions and a group of regular sessions featuring different aspects and point of views of artificial neural networks and natural intelligence, also including applications of present compelling interest.

  19. Great landslide events in Italian artificial reservoirs

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. Panizzo

    2005-01-01

    Full Text Available The empirical formulations to forecast landslide generated water waves, recently defined in the framework of a research program funded by the Italian National Dam Office RID (Registro Italiano Dighe, are here used to study three real cases of subaerial landslides which fell down italian artificial reservoirs. It is well known that impulse water waves generated by landslides constitute a very dangerous menace for human communities living in the shoreline of the artificial basin or downstream the dam. In 1963, the menace became tragedy, when a 270 millions m3 landslide fell down the Vajont reservoir (Italy, generated an impulse wave which destroyed the city of Longarone, and killed 2000 people. The paper is aimed at presenting the very satisfactorily reproduction of the events at hand by using forecasting formulations.  

  20. Great landslide events in Italian artificial reservoirs

    Science.gov (United States)

    Panizzo, A.; de Girolamo, P.; di Risio, M.; Maistri, A.; Petaccia, A.

    2005-09-01

    The empirical formulations to forecast landslide generated water waves, recently defined in the framework of a research program funded by the Italian National Dam Office RID (Registro Italiano Dighe), are here used to study three real cases of subaerial landslides which fell down italian artificial reservoirs. It is well known that impulse water waves generated by landslides constitute a very dangerous menace for human communities living in the shoreline of the artificial basin or downstream the dam. In 1963, the menace became tragedy, when a 270 millions m3 landslide fell down the Vajont reservoir (Italy), generated an impulse wave which destroyed the city of Longarone, and killed 2000 people. The paper is aimed at presenting the very satisfactorily reproduction of the events at hand by using forecasting formulations.

  1. The Italian contribution to the CSES satellite

    Science.gov (United States)

    Conti, Livio

    2016-04-01

    We present the Italian contribution to the CSES (China Seismo-Electromagnetic Satellite) mission. The CSES satellite aims at investigating electromagnetic field, plasma and particles in the near-Earth environment in order to study in particular seismic precursors, particles fluxes (from Van Allen belts, cosmic rays, solar wind, etc.), anthropogenic electromagnetic pollution and more in general the atmosphere-ionosphere-magnetosphere coupling mechanisms that can affect the climate changes. The launch of CSES - the first of a series of several satellite missions - is scheduled by the end of 2016. The CSES satellite has been financed by the CNSA (China National Space Agency) and developed by CEA (China Earthquake Administration) together with several Chinese research institutes and private companies such as the DFH (that has developed the CAST2000 satellite platform). Italy participates to the CSES satellite mission with the LIMADOU project funded by ASI (Italian Space Agency) in collaboration with the Universities of Roma Tor Vergata, Uninettuno, Trento, Bologna and Perugia, as well as the INFN (Italian National Institute of Nuclear Physics), INGV (Italian National Institute of Geophysics and Volcanology) and INAF-IAPS (Italian National Institute of Astrophysics and Planetology). Many analyses have shown that satellite observations of electromagnetic fields, plasma parameters and particle fluxes in low Earth orbit may be useful in order to study the existence of electromagnetic emissions associated with the occurrence of earthquakes of medium and high magnitude. Although the earthquakes forecasting is not possible today, it is certainly a major challenge - and perhaps even a duty - for science in the near future. The claims that the reported anomalies (of electromagnetic, plasma and particle parameters) are seismic precursors are still intensely debated and analyses for confirming claimed correlations are still lacking. In fact, ionospheric currents, plasma

  2. Italian students win a trip to CERN

    CERN Multimedia

    2006-01-01

    The six winners of the Progetto Lauree Scientifiche came to CERN to discover the LHC experiments. Six Italian high-school students visited CERN last week as part of a biennial project sponsored by the Italian Research ministry, the University of Ferrara and INFN. A total of 160 enthusiastic students took part in the project, which aims to introduce and foster interest in higher levels of science and technology. The Progetto Lauree Scientifiche prize was awarded to these students for their excellent grades in an examination covering various areas of physics, including laser, solid and particle physics. The winners spent six days at CERN touring the Laboratory and seeing first-hand the various aspects of research in one of the leading European centres, as well as the excitement of the particle physics adventure.

  3. A healthy lesson, Italian-style?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Walter Ricciardi

    2009-12-01

    Full Text Available According to the conclusions of the World Health Organisation’s 2000 report Italy had the second best health system in the world [1] with Italians having one of the highest rates of life expectancy... However, since 2001 the 19 Italian Regions and 2 Autonomous Provinces have exercised their autonomy very differently, with Northern regions being more successful in establishing effective structures of health care delivery, management and monitoring, as compared to regions in the South. This regional variation in health care reflects (and exacerbates differences of contextual, political, economic and cultural, factors as well as differences between regional health systems. A recent survey [2] showed that in 14 of the 21 Regions and Autonomous Provinces, the system is performing fairly well and is well perceived by citizens.

  4. Genetic variability of Italian Heavy Draught Horse

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fabio Maretto

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available This study aimed to analyze the genetic variability of the Italian Heavy Draught Horse (IHDH breed using a panel of 23 microsatellite markers. We also compared the population structure of the IHDH to other two unrelated breeds (Italian Haflinger, IH and Quarter Horse, QH. The IHDH showed a genetic variability comparable with other European heavy draught horse breeds and with the IH and QH breeds analyzed. Clustering analyses using a posterior Bayesian approach clearly differentiated the three breeds; it also showed a fragmentation of the IHDH in three subpopulations that need to be further investigated. These findings are an indicator of the present situation of the IHDH and will contribute to the conservation and implementation of the selection programme for this breed.

  5. Mercury levels in defined Italian population groups

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ingrao, G.; Belloni, P.

    1991-01-01

    Our group conducts its research activity in the Department AMB-BIO (Biological and Sanitary Effect of Toxic Agents) of ENEA (National Committee for Research and Development of Nuclear and Alternative Energy) at the research centre of Casaccia. The food chain is the main pathway leading to humans for most of the trace elements. The research, therefore, has been directed mainly towards the study of the variability of the trace element content in the Italian diet. This programme aims at assessing the adequacy of the essential trace elements ingestion, and to verify that the ingestion of toxic trace elements is below the recommended values. Part of this research was conducted in the frame of the IAEA CRP on ''Human daily Intakes of Nutritionally Important Trace Elements as Measured by Nuclear and Other Techniques''. Studies carried out by the National Institute of Nutrition and FAO have shown that there are some population groups having a fish consumption significantly higher than the average value for the Italian population. These groups are usually found in coastal towns were fishing is one of the main occupation and generally includes fishermen, fish dealers, restaurant workers and their families. A pilot study was conducted in one of these towns, Bagnara Calabra in the South of Italy, where the average fish consumption is 27.1 kg per year, which is more than twice the national average. The results have shown that the mercury concentration in the diet is significantly higher than in other Italian locations, the mercury levels in blood and hair sample in these subjects are also significantly higher than the values reported for subjects of the general Italian population. 6 refs

  6. Italian Microhistory, anthropology and judicial archives

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eulalia Hernández Ciro

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available From the interceptions between the Italian microhistory and anthropology, this article aims to provide a central debate of contemporary historiography account of popular culture and subaltern classes from the intensive and exhaustive judicial proceedings. To do this, some of the impacts of anthropology will be addressed in the historical work, as the appearance and questioning notion of popular culture, the ethnographic value of court files and finally, some possibilities in the case of Judicial Historical Archive of Medellin.

  7. Nuclear engineering education in italian universities

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Dulla, S.; Panella, B.; Ravetto, P.

    2011-01-01

    The paper illustrates the evolution and the present situation of the university-level nuclear engineering education in Italy. The problems connected with the need of qualified faculty in view of a dramatic increase of students is pointed out. A short description of the programs at present available at Italian universities is also presented, together with some statistics referred to Politecnico di Torino. The mathematical and computation content of each programs is also analyzed. (author)

  8. Italian asset management companies: products and governance

    OpenAIRE

    Arcuri, Maria Cristina

    2013-01-01

    The importance of the asset management sector has prompted many studies to highlight the need to promote its growth and development. This is even more so following the recent financial crisis, considered by many authors the most severe recession after World War II. Contributions existing in literature have emphasized the importance of investigating the corporate governance system of the Asset Management Companies (AMCs), considering that the Italian financial system is characterized by a "...

  9. Acquired dyslexia in Serbian speakers with Broca's and Wernicke's aphasia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vuković, Mile; Vuković, Irena; Miller, Nick

    2016-01-01

    This study examined patterns of acquired dyslexia in Serbian aphasic speakers, comparing profiles of groups with Broca's versus Wernicke's aphasia. The study also looked at the relationship of reading and auditory comprehension and between reading comprehension and reading aloud in these groups. Participants were 20 people with Broca's and 20 with Wernicke's aphasia. They were asked to read aloud and to understand written material from the Serbian adaptation of the Boston Diagnostic Aphasia Examination. A Serbian Word Reading Aloud Test was also used. The people with Broca's aphasia achieved better results in reading aloud and in reading comprehension than those with Wernicke's aphasia. Those with Wernicke's aphasia showed significantly more semantic errors than those with Broca's aphasia who had significantly more morphological and phonological errors. From the data we inferred that lesion sites accorded with previous work on networks associated with Broca's and Wernicke's aphasia and with a posterior-anterior axis for reading processes centred on (left) parietal-temporal-frontal lobes. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  10. Speech spectrum's correlation with speakers' Eysenck personality traits.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chao Hu

    Full Text Available The current study explored the correlation between speakers' Eysenck personality traits and speech spectrum parameters. Forty-six subjects completed the Eysenck Personality Questionnaire. They were instructed to verbally answer the questions shown on a computer screen and their responses were recorded by the computer. Spectrum parameters of /sh/ and /i/ were analyzed by Praat voice software. Formant frequencies of the consonant /sh/ in lying responses were significantly lower than that in truthful responses, whereas no difference existed on the vowel /i/ speech spectrum. The second formant bandwidth of the consonant /sh/ speech spectrum was significantly correlated with the personality traits of Psychoticism, Extraversion, and Neuroticism, and the correlation differed between truthful and lying responses, whereas the first formant frequency of the vowel /i/ speech spectrum was negatively correlated with Neuroticism in both response types. The results suggest that personality characteristics may be conveyed through the human voice, although the extent to which these effects are due to physiological differences in the organs associated with speech or to a general Pygmalion effect is yet unknown.

  11. An acoustic investigation of Arabic vowels pronounced by Malay speakers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ali Abd Almisreb

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available In Malaysia, Arabic language is spoken, and commonly used among the Malays. Malays use Arabic in their daily life, such as during performing worship. Hence, in this paper, some of the Arabic vowels attributes are investigated, analyzed and initial findings are presented based on tokens articulated by Malay speakers as we can consider the spoken Arabic by Malays as one of the Arabic dialects. It is known that in Arabic language there are 28 consonants and 6 main vowels. Firstly, the duration, variability, and overlapping attributes are highlighted based on syllables of Consonant–Vowel with each syllable representing every Arabic consonant with the corresponding vowels. Next, the dispersion of each vowel is examined to be compared with each other along with the variability among vowels that may cause overlapping between vowels in the vowel-space. Results showed that the vowel overlapping occurred between short vowels and their long counterpart vowels. Furthermore, an investigation of the Arabic vowel duration is addressed as well, and duration analysis for all the vowels is discussed, followed by the analysis for each vowel separately. In addition, a comparison between long and short vowels is presented as well as comparison between high and low vowel is carried out.

  12. Speakers' assumptions about the lexical flexibility of idioms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gibbs, R W; Nayak, N P; Bolton, J L; Keppel, M E

    1989-01-01

    In three experiments, we examined why some idioms can be lexically altered and still retain their figurative meanings (e.g., John buttoned his lips about Mary can be changed into John fastened his lips about Mary and still mean "John didn't say anything about Mary"), whereas other idioms cannot be lexically altered without losing their figurative meanings (e.g., John kicked the bucket, meaning "John died," loses its idiomatic meaning when changed into John kicked the pail). Our hypothesis was that the lexical flexibility of idioms is determined by speakers' assumptions about the ways in which parts of idioms contribute to their figurative interpretations as a whole. The results of the three experiments indicated that idioms whose individual semantic components contribute to their overall figurative meanings (e.g., go out on a limb) were judged as less disrupted by changes in their lexical items (e.g., go out on a branch) than were nondecomposable idioms (e.g., kick the bucket) when their individual words were altered (e.g., punt the pail). These findings lend support to the idea that both the syntactic productivity and the lexical makeup of idioms are matters of degree, depending on the idioms' compositional properties. This conclusion suggests that idioms do not form a unique class of linguistic items, but share many of the properties of more literal language.

  13. Speaker gender identification based on majority vote classifiers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mezghani, Eya; Charfeddine, Maha; Nicolas, Henri; Ben Amar, Chokri

    2017-03-01

    Speaker gender identification is considered among the most important tools in several multimedia applications namely in automatic speech recognition, interactive voice response systems and audio browsing systems. Gender identification systems performance is closely linked to the selected feature set and the employed classification model. Typical techniques are based on selecting the best performing classification method or searching optimum tuning of one classifier parameters through experimentation. In this paper, we consider a relevant and rich set of features involving pitch, MFCCs as well as other temporal and frequency-domain descriptors. Five classification models including decision tree, discriminant analysis, nave Bayes, support vector machine and k-nearest neighbor was experimented. The three best perming classifiers among the five ones will contribute by majority voting between their scores. Experimentations were performed on three different datasets spoken in three languages: English, German and Arabic in order to validate language independency of the proposed scheme. Results confirm that the presented system has reached a satisfying accuracy rate and promising classification performance thanks to the discriminating abilities and diversity of the used features combined with mid-level statistics.

  14. Listening to a non-native speaker: Adaptation and generalization

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clarke, Constance M.

    2004-05-01

    Non-native speech can cause perceptual difficulty for the native listener, but experience can moderate this difficulty. This study explored the perceptual benefit of a brief (approximately 1 min) exposure to foreign-accented speech using a cross-modal word matching paradigm. Processing speed was tracked by recording reaction times (RTs) to visual probe words following English sentences produced by a Spanish-accented speaker. In experiment 1, RTs decreased significantly over 16 accented utterances and by the end were equal to RTs to a native voice. In experiment 2, adaptation to one Spanish-accented voice improved perceptual efficiency for a new Spanish-accented voice, indicating that abstract properties of accented speech are learned during adaptation. The control group in Experiment 2 also adapted to the accented voice during the test block, suggesting adaptation can occur within two to four sentences. The results emphasize the flexibility of the human speech processing system and the need for a mechanism to explain this adaptation in models of spoken word recognition. [Research supported by an NSF Graduate Research Fellowship and the University of Arizona Cognitive Science Program.] a)Currently at SUNY at Buffalo, Dept. of Psych., Park Hall, Buffalo, NY 14260, cclarke2@buffalo.edu

  15. A Text-Independent Speaker Authentication System for Mobile Devices

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Florentin Thullier

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available This paper presents a text independent speaker authentication method adapted to mobile devices. Special attention was placed on delivering a fully operational application, which admits a sufficient reliability level and an efficient functioning. To this end, we have excluded the need for any network communication. Hence, we opted for the completion of both the training and the identification processes directly on the mobile device through the extraction of linear prediction cepstral coefficients and the naive Bayes algorithm as the classifier. Furthermore, the authentication decision is enhanced to overcome misidentification through access privileges that the user should attribute to each application beforehand. To evaluate the proposed authentication system, eleven participants were involved in the experiment, conducted in quiet and noisy environments. Public speech corpora were also employed to compare this implementation to existing methods. Results were efficient regarding mobile resources’ consumption. The overall classification performance obtained was accurate with a small number of samples. Then, it appeared that our authentication system might be used as a first security layer, but also as part of a multilayer authentication, or as a fall-back mechanism.

  16. Phonological processing in Mandarin speakers with congenital amusia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Xiao; Peng, Gang

    2014-12-01

    Although there is an emerging consensus that both musical and linguistic pitch processing can be problematic for individuals with a developmental disorder termed congenital amusia, the nature of such a pitch-processing deficit, especially that demonstrated in a speech setting, remains unclear. Therefore, this study tested the performance of native Mandarin speakers, both with and without amusia, on discrimination and imitation tasks for Cantonese level tones, aiming to shed light on this issue. Results suggest that the impact of the phonological deficit, coupled with that of the domain-general pitch deficit, could provide a more comprehensive interpretation of Mandarin amusics' speech impairment. Specifically, when there was a high demand for pitch sensitivity, as in fine-grained pitch discriminations, the operation of the pitch-processing deficit played the more predominant role in modulating amusics' speech performance. But when the demand was low, as in discriminating naturally produced Cantonese level tones, the impact of the phonological deficit was more pronounced compared to that of the pitch-processing deficit. However, despite their perceptual deficits, Mandarin amusics' imitation abilities were comparable to controls'. Such selective impairment in tonal perception suggests that the phonological deficit more severely implicates amusics' input pathways.

  17. Tracking the deployment of the integrated metropolitan ITS infrastructure in Orlando : FY99 results

    Science.gov (United States)

    2000-01-01

    In January 1996, Secretary Pea set a goal of deploying the integrated metropolitan Intelligent Transportation System (ITS) infrastructure in 75 of the nations largest metropolitan areas by 2006. In 1997, the U.S. Department of Transportation ini...

  18. 75 FR 40726 - Revisions to the California State Implementation Plan, Sacramento Metropolitan Air Quality...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-07-14

    ... the California State Implementation Plan, Sacramento Metropolitan Air Quality Management District and South Coast Air Quality Management District AGENCY: Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). ACTION... Metropolitan Air Quality Management District (SMAQMD) and South Coast Air Quality Management District (SCAQMD...

  19. 75 FR 40762 - Revisions to the California State Implementation Plan, Sacramento Metropolitan Air Quality...

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-07-14

    ... the California State Implementation Plan, Sacramento Metropolitan Air Quality Management District and South Coast Air Quality Management District AGENCY: Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). ACTION: Proposed rule. SUMMARY: EPA is proposing to approve revisions to the Sacramento Metropolitan Air Quality...

  20. A Method to Integrate GMM, SVM and DTW for Speaker Recognition

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ing-Jr Ding

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available This paper develops an effective and efficient scheme to integrate Gaussian mixture model (GMM, support vector machine (SVM, and dynamic time wrapping (DTW for automatic speaker recognition. GMM and SVM are two popular classifiers for speaker recognition applications. DTW is a fast and simple template matching method, and it is frequently seen in applications of speech recognition. In this work, DTW does not play a role to perform speech recognition, and it will be employed to be a verifier for verification of valid speakers. The proposed combination scheme of GMM, SVM and DTW, called SVMGMM-DTW, for speaker recognition in this study is a two-phase verification process task including GMM-SVM verification of the first phase and DTW verification of the second phase. By providing a double check to verify the identity of a speaker, it will be difficult for imposters to try to pass the security protection; therefore, the safety degree of speaker recognition systems will be largely increased. A series of experiments designed on door access control applications demonstrated that the superiority of the developed SVMGMM-DTW on speaker recognition accuracy.

  1. Towards an Intelligent Acoustic Front End for Automatic Speech Recognition: Built-in Speaker Normalization

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Umit H. Yapanel

    2008-08-01

    Full Text Available A proven method for achieving effective automatic speech recognition (ASR due to speaker differences is to perform acoustic feature speaker normalization. More effective speaker normalization methods are needed which require limited computing resources for real-time performance. The most popular speaker normalization technique is vocal-tract length normalization (VTLN, despite the fact that it is computationally expensive. In this study, we propose a novel online VTLN algorithm entitled built-in speaker normalization (BISN, where normalization is performed on-the-fly within a newly proposed PMVDR acoustic front end. The novel algorithm aspect is that in conventional frontend processing with PMVDR and VTLN, two separating warping phases are needed; while in the proposed BISN method only one single speaker dependent warp is used to achieve both the PMVDR perceptual warp and VTLN warp simultaneously. This improved integration unifies the nonlinear warping performed in the front end and reduces simultaneously. This improved integration unifies the nonlinear warping performed in the front end and reduces computational requirements, thereby offering advantages for real-time ASR systems. Evaluations are performed for (i an in-car extended digit recognition task, where an on-the-fly BISN implementation reduces the relative word error rate (WER by 24%, and (ii for a diverse noisy speech task (SPINE 2, where the relative WER improvement was 9%, both relative to the baseline speaker normalization method.

  2. Towards an Intelligent Acoustic Front End for Automatic Speech Recognition: Built-in Speaker Normalization

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yapanel UmitH

    2008-01-01

    Full Text Available A proven method for achieving effective automatic speech recognition (ASR due to speaker differences is to perform acoustic feature speaker normalization. More effective speaker normalization methods are needed which require limited computing resources for real-time performance. The most popular speaker normalization technique is vocal-tract length normalization (VTLN, despite the fact that it is computationally expensive. In this study, we propose a novel online VTLN algorithm entitled built-in speaker normalization (BISN, where normalization is performed on-the-fly within a newly proposed PMVDR acoustic front end. The novel algorithm aspect is that in conventional frontend processing with PMVDR and VTLN, two separating warping phases are needed; while in the proposed BISN method only one single speaker dependent warp is used to achieve both the PMVDR perceptual warp and VTLN warp simultaneously. This improved integration unifies the nonlinear warping performed in the front end and reduces simultaneously. This improved integration unifies the nonlinear warping performed in the front end and reduces computational requirements, thereby offering advantages for real-time ASR systems. Evaluations are performed for (i an in-car extended digit recognition task, where an on-the-fly BISN implementation reduces the relative word error rate (WER by 24%, and (ii for a diverse noisy speech task (SPINE 2, where the relative WER improvement was 9%, both relative to the baseline speaker normalization method.

  3. Analysis of human scream and its impact on text-independent speaker verification.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hansen, John H L; Nandwana, Mahesh Kumar; Shokouhi, Navid

    2017-04-01

    Scream is defined as sustained, high-energy vocalizations that lack phonological structure. Lack of phonological structure is how scream is identified from other forms of loud vocalization, such as "yell." This study investigates the acoustic aspects of screams and addresses those that are known to prevent standard speaker identification systems from recognizing the identity of screaming speakers. It is well established that speaker variability due to changes in vocal effort and Lombard effect contribute to degraded performance in automatic speech systems (i.e., speech recognition, speaker identification, diarization, etc.). However, previous research in the general area of speaker variability has concentrated on human speech production, whereas less is known about non-speech vocalizations. The UT-NonSpeech corpus is developed here to investigate speaker verification from scream samples. This study considers a detailed analysis in terms of fundamental frequency, spectral peak shift, frame energy distribution, and spectral tilt. It is shown that traditional speaker recognition based on the Gaussian mixture models-universal background model framework is unreliable when evaluated with screams.

  4. Infants' Selectively Pay Attention to the Information They Receive from a Native Speaker of Their Language.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marno, Hanna; Guellai, Bahia; Vidal, Yamil; Franzoi, Julia; Nespor, Marina; Mehler, Jacques

    2016-01-01

    From the first moments of their life, infants show a preference for their native language, as well as toward speakers with whom they share the same language. This preference appears to have broad consequences in various domains later on, supporting group affiliations and collaborative actions in children. Here, we propose that infants' preference for native speakers of their language also serves a further purpose, specifically allowing them to efficiently acquire culture specific knowledge via social learning. By selectively attending to informants who are native speakers of their language and who probably also share the same cultural background with the infant, young learners can maximize the possibility to acquire cultural knowledge. To test whether infants would preferably attend the information they receive from a speaker of their native language, we familiarized 12-month-old infants with a native and a foreign speaker, and then presented them with movies where each of the speakers silently gazed toward unfamiliar objects. At test, infants' looking behavior to the two objects alone was measured. Results revealed that infants preferred to look longer at the object presented by the native speaker. Strikingly, the effect was replicated also with 5-month-old infants, indicating an early development of such preference. These findings provide evidence that young infants pay more attention to the information presented by a person with whom they share the same language. This selectivity can serve as a basis for efficient social learning by influencing how infants' allocate attention between potential sources of information in their environment.

  5. Ramsey prices in the Italian electricity market

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bigerna, Simona; Bollino, Carlo Andrea

    2016-01-01

    In this paper, we derive optimal zonal prices in the Italian day-ahead electricity market using estimation of a complete system of hourly demand in 2010–2011. In Italy, the hourly equilibrium price for all buyers is computed as a uniform average of supply zonal prices, resulting from market splitting due to line congestion. We model ex-ante individual bids expressed by heterogeneous consumers, which are distinguished by geographical zones. Using empirical estimations, we compute demand elasticity values and new zonal prices, according to a Ramsey optimal scheme. This is a new approach in the wholesale electricity market literature, as previous studies have discussed the relative merit of zonal prices, considering only the issue of line congestion. Our results show that the optimal pricing scheme can improve welfare in the day-ahead Italian electricity market, with respect to both the existing uniform price scheme and the proposal to charge the existing supply zonal prices to the demand side. - Highlights: • We model and estimate the demand of heterogeneous buyers in the electricity market. • Transmission line congestion creates welfare distortions in the market. • We derive optimal Ramsey prices in the Italian day-ahead electricity market. • We compare optimal prices with historical ones showing how to improve welfare.

  6. Ionizing radiations in Italian health care structures

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Fizzano, M.R.; Frusteri, L.

    2006-01-01

    The Council of the European Union has completely renewed the framework regarding radiation protection by adopting some directives: Directive 97/43 EURATOM lays down the general principles of the radiation protection of individuals undergoing exposure to ionising radiations related to medical exposures, as a supplement of Directive 96/29 EURATOM laying down the basic safety standards for the protection of the health of workers and the general public against the dangers arising from ionising radiations.The incorporation into Italian legislation of the European Community directives on the improvement of health and safety at work has promoted a vast effort in order to revise the surveillance approach in many facilities, including hospitals. In Italy, safety law is referred to every workplace; anyway the use of ionising radiations is ruled by specific laws. So in the health care structures it is necessary integrating both the laws and this process is often difficult to carry on. The Italian Legislative Decree 230/95, one the main laws that aim to protect workers against ionising radiations, introduced Directive 96/29/EURATOM. This Decree asks that a doctor and a technical expert analyse the workplace and classify area and workers in according to dose of ionising radiation established by law. The Italian Legislative Decree 626/94 asks that risk analysis in general is made by doctor and specialist in risk. So, in case of risk from ionising radiation, all these figures have to cooperate in order to make an evaluation risk document. (N.C.)

  7. Residential construction cost: An Italian survey.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Canesi, Rubina; Marella, Giuliano

    2017-04-01

    This paper reports data describing development projects for new buildings according to construction costs in North-East Italy. A survey was carried out on local companies undertaking new residential development projects in two Italian regions (Veneto and Lombardy). The aim of this survey was to record new real estate construction projects, collecting both technical and socio-economic cost features. It is extremely difficult to collect such data for the Italian real estate construction sector, due to its lack of transparency, so that the novelty for the Italian scenario is the dataset itself. Another interest perspective of this survey is that socio-economic characteristics were also recorded; they are often studied in urban economics, but are usually related to property purchase prices and values, not to construction costs. The data come from an analysis of Canesi and Marella regarding the relationship between the trend of construction costs and the socio-economic conditions of the reference setting, such as the mean years of schooling of the workforce, housing market trends, and average per capita income.

  8. Residential construction cost: An Italian survey

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rubina Canesi

    2017-04-01

    Full Text Available This paper reports data describing development projects for new buildings according to construction costs in North-East Italy. A survey was carried out on local companies undertaking new residential development projects in two Italian regions (Veneto and Lombardy. The aim of this survey was to record new real estate construction projects, collecting both technical and socio-economic cost features. It is extremely difficult to collect such data for the Italian real estate construction sector, due to its lack of transparency, so that the novelty for the Italian scenario is the dataset itself. Another interest perspective of this survey is that socio-economic characteristics were also recorded; they are often studied in urban economics, but are usually related to property purchase prices and values, not to construction costs. The data come from an analysis of Canesi and Marella regarding the relationship between the trend of construction costs and the socio-economic conditions of the reference setting, such as the mean years of schooling of the workforce, housing market trends, and average per capita income.

  9. Ionizing radiations in Italian health care structures

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Fizzano, M.R.; Frusteri, L. [Technical Advisory Dept. for Risk Assessment and Prevention, Italian Workers Compensation Authority, Rome (Italy)

    2006-07-01

    The Council of the European Union has completely renewed the framework regarding radiation protection by adopting some directives: Directive 97/43 EURATOM lays down the general principles of the radiation protection of individuals undergoing exposure to ionising radiations related to medical exposures, as a supplement of Directive 96/29 EURATOM laying down the basic safety standards for the protection of the health of workers and the general public against the dangers arising from ionising radiations.The incorporation into Italian legislation of the European Community directives on the improvement of health and safety at work has promoted a vast effort in order to revise the surveillance approach in many facilities, including hospitals. In Italy, safety law is referred to every workplace; anyway the use of ionising radiations is ruled by specific laws. So in the health care structures it is necessary integrating both the laws and this process is often difficult to carry on. The Italian Legislative Decree 230/95, one the main laws that aim to protect workers against ionising radiations, introduced Directive 96/29/EURATOM. This Decree asks that a doctor and a technical expert analyse the workplace and classify area and workers in according to dose of ionising radiation established by law. The Italian Legislative Decree 626/94 asks that risk analysis in general is made by doctor and specialist in risk. So, in case of risk from ionising radiation, all these figures have to cooperate in order to make an evaluation risk document. (N.C.)

  10. Switches to English during French Service Encounters: Relationships with L2 French Speakers' Willingness to Communicate and Motivation

    Science.gov (United States)

    McNaughton, Stephanie; McDonough, Kim

    2015-01-01

    This exploratory study investigated second language (L2) French speakers' service encounters in the multilingual setting of Montreal, specifically whether switches to English during French service encounters were related to L2 speakers' willingness to communicate or motivation. Over a two-week period, 17 French L2 speakers in Montreal submitted…

  11. New Metropolitan Spaces and Metropolitan Strategies in the Face of Modernisation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Willem Salet

    2007-10-01

    Full Text Available Au début du xxie siècle, les espaces urbains traversent une période de croissance et de transformation radicale. Les villes s’étendent de plus en plus. Leur configuration spatiale devient de plus en plus décentralisée et fragmentée. La dichotomie traditionnelle entre hiérarchie urbaine et périphérie est en train de disparaître. Les nouveaux espaces métropolitains sont caractérisés par des processus de segmentation et de spécialisation à distance ainsi que par des polarisations sociales qui structurent l’espace. Les tentatives de planification des villes-régions essaient de rééquilibrer ces processus qui font éclater la ville. Cet article explore brièvement les transformations métropolitaines actuelles en utilisant une approche générique. Il se focalise également sur les stratégies des métropoles pour affronter ces défis dans le cadre de situations institutionnelles variées, un peu partout en Europe. En troisième lieu, cet article interroge les effets potentiels des projets urbains sur un rééquilibrage des transformations urbaines. Comment les grands projets urbains sont-ils conceptuellement élaborés ? Comment les alliances d’acteurs qui les soutiennent se forgent-elles ? Comment les citoyens et les groupes sociaux sont-ils impliqués de manière à produire de nouveaux espaces plus intégrés ?At the beginning of the 21st century, urban spaces can be said to be in a stage of growth and radical transformation. Cities are highly expansive, both in scale and scope. The spatial configuration of urban spaces is, however, becoming more and more decentralised and fragmentary. The traditional dichotomy between urban hierarchy and periphery is disappearing. New metropolitan spaces are characterised by distance related processes of social and economic specialisation and segmentation, and often also by splitting social polarisation. The planning agendas in city regions are trying to make add more balance to the

  12. Designing, Modeling, Constructing, and Testing a Flat Panel Speaker and Sound Diffuser for a Simulator

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dillon, Christina

    2013-01-01

    The goal of this project was to design, model, build, and test a flat panel speaker and frame for a spherical dome structure being made into a simulator. The simulator will be a test bed for evaluating an immersive environment for human interfaces. This project focused on the loud speakers and a sound diffuser for the dome. The rest of the team worked on an Ambisonics 3D sound system, video projection system, and multi-direction treadmill to create the most realistic scene possible. The main programs utilized in this project, were Pro-E and COMSOL. Pro-E was used for creating detailed figures for the fabrication of a frame that held a flat panel loud speaker. The loud speaker was made from a thin sheet of Plexiglas and 4 acoustic exciters. COMSOL, a multiphysics finite analysis simulator, was used to model and evaluate all stages of the loud speaker, frame, and sound diffuser. Acoustical testing measurements were utilized to create polar plots from the working prototype which were then compared to the COMSOL simulations to select the optimal design for the dome. The final goal of the project was to install the flat panel loud speaker design in addition to a sound diffuser on to the wall of the dome. After running tests in COMSOL on various speaker configurations, including a warped Plexiglas version, the optimal speaker design included a flat piece of Plexiglas with a rounded frame to match the curvature of the dome. Eight of these loud speakers will be mounted into an inch and a half of high performance acoustic insulation, or Thinsulate, that will cover the inside of the dome. The following technical paper discusses these projects and explains the engineering processes used, knowledge gained, and the projected future goals of this project

  13. Italianization Accomplished. Forms and Structures of Albanian Television’s Dependency on Italian Media and Culture

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Paolo Carelli

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available After the fall of the Berlin Wall and the end of communist regimes in 1989, national media systems of the Eastern European countries belonging to the Soviet bloc began a process of transformation along the way of liberalization and commercialization. In Albania, this process occurred in different phases, but with a common trend, that is the Italian television as a structural, economic and cultural model to inspire. In this article, I try to outline the deep influences and legacies between Italian and Albanian television systems (dating back to the last years of the regime showing how, despite a progressive sliding towards americanization, they remain a typical landmark of Albanian media. From the formats of the first programmes after the regime to the recent appearances of Italian Tv presenters (in particular, from Berlusconi's channels on Albanian private channels, we can observe a subtle but rooted and continuous dependency from the country on the other side of the Adriatic Sea.  

  14. Popular Public Discourse at Speakers' Corner: Negotiating Cultural Identities in Interaction

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    McIlvenny, Paul

    1996-01-01

    In this paper I examine how cultural identities are actively negotiated in popular debate at a multicultural public setting in London. Speakers at Speakers' Corner manage the local construction of group affiliation, audience response and argument in and through talk, within the context of ethnic...... in which participant 'citizens' in the public sphere can actively struggle over cultural representation and identities. Using transcribed examples of video data recorded at Speakers' Corner my paper will examine how cultural identity is invoked in the management of active participation. Audiences...... and their affiliations are regulated and made accountable through the routines of membership categorisation and the policing of cultural identities and their imaginary borders....

  15. Italian Mediterranean Index and risk of colorectal cancer in the Italian section of the EPIC cohort.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Agnoli, Claudia; Grioni, Sara; Sieri, Sabina; Palli, Domenico; Masala, Giovanna; Sacerdote, Carlotta; Vineis, Paolo; Tumino, Rosario; Giurdanella, Maria Concetta; Pala, Valeria; Berrino, Franco; Mattiello, Amalia; Panico, Salvatore; Krogh, Vittorio

    2013-03-15

    Colorectal cancer is among the commonest cancers worldwide. Dietary factors have been linked to colorectal cancer risk, however, few studies have evaluated the relationship between a priori dietary patterns and colorectal cancer risk. We evaluated the effect of adherence to a Mediterranean dietary pattern, as measured by the Italian Mediterranean Index, on the risk of colorectal cancer in the 45,275 participants of the Italian section of the EPIC study who completed a dietary questionnaire. Hazard ratios (HRs) with 95% confidence intervals (CIs) for colorectal cancer in relation to categories of Italian Mediterranean Index score were estimated by multivariate Cox models adjusted for known risk factors, on the whole cohort, on men and women and according to cancer subsite. During a mean follow-up of 11.28 years, 435 colorectal cancer cases were identified. The Italian Mediterranean Index was inversely associated with colorectal cancer risk (HR: 0.50; 95% CI: 0.35-0.71 for the highest category compared to the lowest, P-trend: 0.043). Results did not differ by sex. Highest Italian Mediterranean Index score was also significantly associated with reduced risks of any colon cancer (HR: 0.54, 95% CI: 0.36-0.81), distal colon cancer (HR: 0.44, 95% CI: 0.26-0.75) and rectal cancer (HR: 0.41, 95% CI: 0.20-0.81), but not of proximal colon cancer. These findings suggest that adherence to a Mediterranean diet (as measured by the Italian Mediterranean Index) protects against colorectal cancer in general but not against cancer developing in the proximal colon. Copyright © 2012 UICC.

  16. Implications of urban structure on carbon consumption in metropolitan areas

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Heinonen, Jukka; Junnila, Seppo

    2011-01-01

    Urban structure influences directly or indirectly the majority of all green house gas (GHG) emissions in cities. The prevailing belief is that dense metropolitan areas produce less carbon emissions on a per capita basis than less dense surrounding rural areas. Consequently, density targets have a major role in low-carbon urban developments. However, based on the results of this study, the connection seems unclear or even nonexistent when comprehensive evaluation is made. In this letter, we propose a hybrid life cycle assessment (LCA) method for calculating the consumption-based carbon footprints in metropolitan areas, i.e. carbon consumption, with the emphasis on urban structures. The method is input-output-based hybrid LCA, which operates with the existing data from the region. The study is conducted by performing an analysis of the carbon consumption in two metropolitan areas in Finland, including 11 cities. Both areas consist of a dense city core and a less dense surrounding suburban area. The paper will illustrate that the influence of urban density on carbon emissions is insignificant in the selected metropolitan areas. In addition, the utilized consumption-based method links the climate effects of city-level development to the global production of emissions.

  17. Governing metropolitan green infrastructure in the United States

    Science.gov (United States)

    Robert F. Young; E. Gregory McPherson

    2013-01-01

    In this paper we explore whether the enhancement of urban ecosystem services through largescale metropolitan treeplanting initiatives is being planned and executed as a component of traditional municipal government or represents new transdisciplinary strategies in environmental governance Drawing on qualitative interviews with...

  18. Disparities in Salaries: Metropolitan versus Nonmetropolitan Community College Faculty

    Science.gov (United States)

    Glover, Louis C.; Simpson, Lynn A.; Waller, Lee Rusty

    2009-01-01

    This article explores disparities in faculty salaries between metropolitan and nonmetropolitan Texas community colleges. The analysis reveals a significant difference in faculty salaries for the 2000 and 2005 academic years respectively. The study found no significant difference in the rate of change in faculty salaries from 2000 to 2005.…

  19. Is There a Global Role for Metropolitan City Libraries?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mason, Marilyn Gell

    1994-01-01

    Discusses the potential for linking large metropolitan public libraries to international interlibrary loan networks. Issues involved in international networking, including funding, standards, network connectivity, and protectionism, are discussed. Examples of libraries capable of participating and brief descriptions of their collections are given.…

  20. Designing metropolitan landscapes for biodiversity: deriving guidelines from metapopulation ecology

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Opdam, P.F.M.; Steingröver, E.G.

    2008-01-01

    The decentralization of planning is giving local planning groups more power in decision making on the spatial development of metropolitan landscapes. However, because scientific knowledge is rarely used in these decision-making processes, there is a risk of discrepancies between the conservation

  1. The Tshwane metropolitan municipality and strategic partnerships in ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    ... Tshwane Metropolitan Municipality commissioned research to investigate the potential of strategic partnerships for the optimal facilitation and co-operative governance of sport and recreation. The aim of this project was to identify the possible structure and nature of partnerships in order to facilitate effective management, ...

  2. Residential fencing in a metropolitan area and three small towns.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Edwin Kallio; Jerry A. Sesco

    1967-01-01

    Many types of fences were found on residential lots in the metropolitan-suburban area of St. Louis County, Missouri, and three small towns in southern Illinois. Wire fences predominated. More wooden fences were found on village lots than on city lots. In general, the more expensive homes had the most wooden fencing. Homes over 5 years old had more fencing of all...

  3. OXYGEN TRANSFER STUDIES AT THE MADISON METROPOLITAN SEWERAGE DISTRICT FACILITIES

    Science.gov (United States)

    Field studies at the Madison Metropolitan Sewerage District facilities were conducted over a 3-year period to obtain long-term data on the performance of fine pore aeration equipment in municipal wastewater. The studies were conducted on several basins in the East Plant containi...

  4. 40 CFR 81.17 - Metropolitan Los Angeles Air Quality Control Region.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-07-01

    ... Quality Control Regions § 81.17 Metropolitan Los Angeles Air Quality Control Region. The Metropolitan Los Angeles Air Quality Control Region consists of the following territorial area (including the territorial... 40 Protection of Environment 17 2010-07-01 2010-07-01 false Metropolitan Los Angeles Air Quality...

  5. 23 CFR 450.336 - Applicability of NEPA to metropolitan transportation plans and programs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-04-01

    ... the Secretary concerning a metropolitan transportation plan or TIP developed through the processes... 23 Highways 1 2010-04-01 2010-04-01 false Applicability of NEPA to metropolitan transportation... TRANSPORTATION PLANNING AND RESEARCH PLANNING ASSISTANCE AND STANDARDS Metropolitan Transportation Planning and...

  6. 40 CFR 81.38 - Metropolitan Houston-Galveston Intrastate Air Quality Control Region.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-07-01

    ... 40 Protection of Environment 17 2010-07-01 2010-07-01 false Metropolitan Houston-Galveston... Designation of Air Quality Control Regions § 81.38 Metropolitan Houston-Galveston Intrastate Air Quality Control Region. The Metropolitan Houston-Galveston Intrastate Air Quality Control Region (Texas) has been...

  7. 40 CFR 81.63 - Metropolitan Fort Smith Interstate Air Quality Control Region.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-07-01

    ... 40 Protection of Environment 17 2010-07-01 2010-07-01 false Metropolitan Fort Smith Interstate Air... Air Quality Control Regions § 81.63 Metropolitan Fort Smith Interstate Air Quality Control Region. The Metropolitan Fort Smith Interstate Air Quality Control Region (Arkansas-Oklahoma) has been revised to consist...

  8. Production in Italian industry: Electric power demand indicators

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ajello, V.

    1993-01-01

    The effects of the recession in Italy were first evidenced during the period spanning 1990-1992 with a sharp drop in the international competitiveness of Italian products. This phase was then followed by a significant drop in internal demand, the devaluation of the Italian Lira and subsequent market uncertainty. This paper presents graphs of national and regional electric power production and consumption figures which reflect the downturn in the viability of the Italian economy, especially in the industrial sector

  9. Representation of the serial killer on the Italian Internet.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Villano, P; Bastianoni, P; Melotti, G

    2001-10-01

    The representation of serial killers was examined from the analysis of 317 Web pages in the Italian language to study how the psychological profiles of serial killers are described on the Italian Internet. The correspondence analysis of the content of these Web pages shows that in Italy the serial killer is associated with words such as "monster" and "horror," which suggest and imply psychological perversion and aberrant acts. These traits are peculiar for the Italian scenario.

  10. Italian Entrepreneurship: Conjectures and Evidence from a Historical Perspective

    OpenAIRE

    Pier Angelo Toninelli; Michelangelo Vasta

    2009-01-01

    This paper is the first product of an ongoing research on the determinants and the role of entrepreneurship in Italian economic development. Its primary aim is the creation of a data-set of Italian entrepreneurs for the period encompassed between the Unification of the Kingdom (1861) and the end of the XXth century. The main source of the research is a collection of 390 entrepreneurial biographies, prepared for an ongoing Dictionary of Italian Entrepreneurs. The first part of the paper presen...

  11. Speaker gaze increases information coupling between infant and adult brains.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leong, Victoria; Byrne, Elizabeth; Clackson, Kaili; Georgieva, Stanimira; Lam, Sarah; Wass, Sam

    2017-12-12

    When infants and adults communicate, they exchange social signals of availability and communicative intention such as eye gaze. Previous research indicates that when communication is successful, close temporal dependencies arise between adult speakers' and listeners' neural activity. However, it is not known whether similar neural contingencies exist within adult-infant dyads. Here, we used dual-electroencephalography to assess whether direct gaze increases neural coupling between adults and infants during screen-based and live interactions. In experiment 1 ( n = 17), infants viewed videos of an adult who was singing nursery rhymes with ( i ) direct gaze (looking forward), ( ii ) indirect gaze (head and eyes averted by 20°), or ( iii ) direct-oblique gaze (head averted but eyes orientated forward). In experiment 2 ( n = 19), infants viewed the same adult in a live context, singing with direct or indirect gaze. Gaze-related changes in adult-infant neural network connectivity were measured using partial directed coherence. Across both experiments, the adult had a significant (Granger) causal influence on infants' neural activity, which was stronger during direct and direct-oblique gaze relative to indirect gaze. During live interactions, infants also influenced the adult more during direct than indirect gaze. Further, infants vocalized more frequently during live direct gaze, and individual infants who vocalized longer also elicited stronger synchronization from the adult. These results demonstrate that direct gaze strengthens bidirectional adult-infant neural connectivity during communication. Thus, ostensive social signals could act to bring brains into mutual temporal alignment, creating a joint-networked state that is structured to facilitate information transfer during early communication and learning. Copyright © 2017 the Author(s). Published by PNAS.

  12. Revenues for Education in Metropolitan Areas. Chapter VI, Metropolitanism: Its Challenge to Education, 1968. Sixty-seventh Yearbook, Part I.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alkin, Marvin C.

    For local school districts to provide equal educational opportunities throughout a metropolitan area, a school organization plan should distribute populations among districts in such a manner as to maximize the aggregate expressed demand for educational services and to provide relatively equal financial support. Consolidation of contiguous…

  13. The native-speaker fever in English language teaching (ELT: Pitting pedagogical competence against historical origin

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anchimbe, Eric A.

    2006-01-01

    Full Text Available This paper discusses English language teaching (ELT around the world, and argues that as a profession, it should emphasise pedagogical competence rather than native-speaker requirement in the recruitment of teachers in English as a foreign language (EFL and English as a second language (ESL contexts. It establishes that being a native speaker does not make one automatically a competent speaker or, of that matter, a competent teacher of the language. It observes that on many grounds, including physical, sociocultural, technological and economic changes in the world as well as the status of English as official and national language in many post-colonial regions, the distinction between native and non-native speakers is no longer valid.

  14. Identifying the nonlinear mechanical behaviour of micro-speakers from their quasi-linear electrical response

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zilletti, Michele; Marker, Arthur; Elliott, Stephen John; Holland, Keith

    2017-05-01

    In this study model identification of the nonlinear dynamics of a micro-speaker is carried out by purely electrical measurements, avoiding any explicit vibration measurements. It is shown that a dynamic model of the micro-speaker, which takes into account the nonlinear damping characteristic of the device, can be identified by measuring the response between the voltage input and the current flowing into the coil. An analytical formulation of the quasi-linear model of the micro-speaker is first derived and an optimisation method is then used to identify a polynomial function which describes the mechanical damping behaviour of the micro-speaker. The analytical results of the quasi-linear model are compared with numerical results. This study potentially opens up the possibility of efficiently implementing nonlinear echo cancellers.

  15. Testing Template and Testing Concept of Operations for Speaker Authentication Technology

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Sipko, Marek M

    2006-01-01

    This thesis documents the findings of developing a generic testing template and supporting concept of operations for speaker verification technology as part of the Iraqi Enrollment via Voice Authentication Project (IEVAP...

  16. Is the superior verbal memory span of Mandarin speakers due to faster rehearsal?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mattys, Sven L; Baddeley, Alan; Trenkic, Danijela

    2018-04-01

    It is well established that digit span in native Chinese speakers is atypically high. This is commonly attributed to a capacity for more rapid subvocal rehearsal for that group. We explored this hypothesis by testing a group of English-speaking native Mandarin speakers on digit span and word span in both Mandarin and English, together with a measure of speed of articulation for each. When compared to the performance of native English speakers, the Mandarin group proved to be superior on both digit and word spans while predictably having lower spans in English. This suggests that the Mandarin advantage is not limited to digits. Speed of rehearsal correlated with span performance across materials. However, this correlation was more pronounced for English speakers than for any of the Chinese measures. Further analysis suggested that speed of rehearsal did not provide an adequate account of differences between Mandarin and English spans or for the advantage of digits over words. Possible alternative explanations are discussed.

  17. Further optimisations of constant Q cepstral processing for integrated utterance and text-dependent speaker verification

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Delgado, Hector; Todisco, Massimiliano; Sahidullah, Md

    2016-01-01

    Many authentication applications involving automatic speaker verification (ASV) demand robust performance using short-duration, fixed or prompted text utterances. Text constraints not only reduce the phone-mismatch between enrollment and test utterances, which generally leads to improved performa...

  18. Artificially intelligent recognition of Arabic speaker using voice print-based local features

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mahmood, Awais; Alsulaiman, Mansour; Muhammad, Ghulam; Akram, Sheeraz

    2016-11-01

    Local features for any pattern recognition system are based on the information extracted locally. In this paper, a local feature extraction technique was developed. This feature was extracted in the time-frequency plain by taking the moving average on the diagonal directions of the time-frequency plane. This feature captured the time-frequency events producing a unique pattern for each speaker that can be viewed as a voice print of the speaker. Hence, we referred to this technique as voice print-based local feature. The proposed feature was compared to other features including mel-frequency cepstral coefficient (MFCC) for speaker recognition using two different databases. One of the databases used in the comparison is a subset of an LDC database that consisted of two short sentences uttered by 182 speakers. The proposed feature attained 98.35% recognition rate compared to 96.7% for MFCC using the LDC subset.

  19. Speaker-Sex Discrimination for Voiced and Whispered Vowels at Short Durations

    OpenAIRE

    Smith, David R. R.

    2016-01-01

    Whispered vowels, produced with no vocal fold vibration, lack the periodic temporal fine structure which in voiced vowels underlies the perceptual attribute of pitch (a salient auditory cue to speaker sex). Voiced vowels possess no temporal fine structure at very short durations (below two glottal cycles). The prediction was that speaker-sex discrimination performance for whispered and voiced vowels would be similar for very short durations but, as stimulus duration increases, voiced vowel pe...

  20. Speaker identification for the improvement of the security communication between law enforcement units

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tovarek, Jaromir; Partila, Pavol

    2017-05-01

    This article discusses the speaker identification for the improvement of the security communication between law enforcement units. The main task of this research was to develop the text-independent speaker identification system which can be used for real-time recognition. This system is designed for identification in the open set. It means that the unknown speaker can be anyone. Communication itself is secured, but we have to check the authorization of the communication parties. We have to decide if the unknown speaker is the authorized for the given action. The calls are recorded by IP telephony server and then these recordings are evaluate using classification If the system evaluates that the speaker is not authorized, it sends a warning message to the administrator. This message can detect, for example a stolen phone or other unusual situation. The administrator then performs the appropriate actions. Our novel proposal system uses multilayer neural network for classification and it consists of three layers (input layer, hidden layer, and output layer). A number of neurons in input layer corresponds with the length of speech features. Output layer then represents classified speakers. Artificial Neural Network classifies speech signal frame by frame, but the final decision is done over the complete record. This rule substantially increases accuracy of the classification. Input data for the neural network are a thirteen Mel-frequency cepstral coefficients, which describe the behavior of the vocal tract. These parameters are the most used for speaker recognition. Parameters for training, testing and validation were extracted from recordings of authorized users. Recording conditions for training data correspond with the real traffic of the system (sampling frequency, bit rate). The main benefit of the research is the system developed for text-independent speaker identification which is applied to secure communication between law enforcement units.

  1. Does training make French speakers more able to identify lexical stress?

    OpenAIRE

    Schwab, Sandra; Llisterri, Joaquim

    2013-01-01

    This research takes the stress deafness hypothesis as a starting point (e.g. Dupoux et al., 2008), and, more specifically, the fact that French speakers present difficulties in perceiving lexical stress in a free-stress language. In this framework, we aim at determining whether a prosodic training could improve the ability of French speakers to identify the stressed syllable in Spanish words. Three groups of participants took part in this experiment. The Native group was composed of 16 speake...

  2. Italian Studies, Italian Theory and the politics of trans-lation

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Minca, C.

    2016-01-01

    Italian Theory has emerged as the result of the search for new conceptual frameworks in the face of a series of international political events concerning not only the proliferation of states of exception but also of new forms of politicization of life related to biomedical science and the

  3. Presenting and processing information in background noise: A combined speaker-listener perspective.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bockstael, Annelies; Samyn, Laurie; Corthals, Paul; Botteldooren, Dick

    2018-01-01

    Transferring information orally in background noise is challenging, for both speaker and listener. Successful transfer depends on complex interaction between characteristics related to listener, speaker, task, background noise, and context. To fully assess the underlying real-life mechanisms, experimental design has to mimic this complex reality. In the current study, the effects of different types of background noise have been studied in an ecologically valid test design. Documentary-style information had to be presented by the speaker and simultaneously acquired by the listener in four conditions: quiet, unintelligible multitalker babble, fluctuating city street noise, and little varying highway noise. For both speaker and listener, the primary task was to focus on the content that had to be transferred. In addition, for the speakers, the occurrence of hesitation phenomena was assessed. The listener had to perform an additional secondary task to address listening effort. For the listener the condition with the most eventful background noise, i.e., fluctuating city street noise, appeared to be the most difficult with markedly longer duration of the secondary task. In the same fluctuating background noise, speech appeared to be less disfluent, suggesting a higher level of concentration from the speaker's side.

  4. Speaker diarization system on the 2007 NIST rich transcription meeting recognition evaluation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sun, Hanwu; Nwe, Tin Lay; Koh, Eugene Chin Wei; Bin, Ma; Li, Haizhou

    2007-09-01

    This paper presents a speaker diarization system developed at the Institute for Infocomm Research (I2R) for NIST Rich Transcription 2007 (RT-07) evaluation task. We describe in details our primary approaches for the speaker diarization on the Multiple Distant Microphones (MDM) conditions in conference room scenario. Our proposed system consists of six modules: 1). Least-mean squared (NLMS) adaptive filter for the speaker direction estimate via Time Difference of Arrival (TDOA), 2). An initial speaker clustering via two-stage TDOA histogram distribution quantization approach, 3). Multiple microphone speaker data alignment via GCC-PHAT Time Delay Estimate (TDE) among all the distant microphone channel signals, 4). A speaker clustering algorithm based on GMM modeling approach, 5). Non-speech removal via speech/non-speech verification mechanism and, 6). Silence removal via "Double-Layer Windowing"(DLW) method. We achieves error rate of 31.02% on the 2006 Spring (RT-06s) MDM evaluation task and a competitive overall error rate of 15.32% for the NIST Rich Transcription 2007 (RT-07) MDM evaluation task.

  5. Nurses' Job satisfaction: an Italian study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sansoni, J; De Caro, W; Marucci, A R; Sorrentino, M; Mayner, L; Lancia, L

    2016-01-01

    The aim of the work presented was to assess job satisfaction of a number of nurses from different departments working in public hospitals in Italy. The assessment was carried out through the combined use of questionnaires, which measured different aspects of job satisfaction, such as coping abilities, stress level and optimism/pessimism. The literature supports the fact that nurses' job dissatisfaction is closely connected with high levels of stress, burnout and physical and mental exhaustion, together with high workload levels and the complexity of care. The growing interest in measuring the levels of nurses' job satisfaction is attributable to a number of problems that have been raised worldwide, two of which are becoming ever so important: turnover and shortage of nurses. The research question is: Which are the main motivating factors of Italian nurses' job satisfaction/dissatisfaction? The study used a convenience (non probability) sample of 1,304 nurses from 15 different wards working in Italian public hospitals from a number of cities in northern, central and southern Italy. The survey instrument was a questionnaire consisting of 205 items which included 5 different questionnaires combined together. The results show a low level of job satisfaction (IWS= 11.5, JSS=126.4). However, the participants were overall happy about their job and considered autonomy and salary important factors for job satisfaction. Research has shown that the nurses' level of satisfaction in Italian hospitals is low. The results revealed dissatisfaction with task requirements, organizational policies and advance in career. Nurses interviewed did not feel stressed and showed to be optimistic overall. New research on the subject should be conducted by focusing on ward differences, North and South of Italy and on gender differences.

  6. Italian Validation of Homophobia Scale (HS).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ciocca, Giacomo; Capuano, Nicolina; Tuziak, Bogdan; Mollaioli, Daniele; Limoncin, Erika; Valsecchi, Diana; Carosa, Eleonora; Gravina, Giovanni L; Gianfrilli, Daniele; Lenzi, Andrea; Jannini, Emmanuele A

    2015-09-01

    The Homophobia Scale (HS) is a valid tool to assess homophobia. This test is self-reporting, composed of 25 items, which assesses a total score and three factors linked to homophobia: behavior/negative affect, affect/behavioral aggression, and negative cognition. The aim of this study was to validate the HS in the Italian context. An Italian translation of the HS was carried out by two bilingual people, after which an English native translated the test back into the English language. A psychologist and sexologist checked the translated items from a clinical point of view. We recruited 100 subjects aged18-65 for the Italian validation of the HS. The Pearson coefficient and Cronbach's α coefficient were performed to test the test-retest reliability and internal consistency. A sociodemographic questionnaire including the main information as age, geographic distribution, partnership status, education, religious orientation, and sex orientation was administrated together with the translated version of HS. The analysis of the internal consistency showed an overall Cronbach's α coefficient of 0.92. In the four domains, the Cronbach's α coefficient was 0.90 in behavior/negative affect, 0.94 in affect/behavioral aggression, and 0.92 in negative cognition, whereas in the total score was 0.86. The test-retest reliability showed the following results: the HS total score was r = 0.93 (P cognition was r = 0.75 (P validation of the HS revealed the use of this self-report test to have good psychometric properties. This study offers a new tool to assess homophobia. In this regard, the HS can be introduced into the clinical praxis and into programs for the prevention of homophobic behavior.

  7. Ex post damage assessment: an Italian experience

    Science.gov (United States)

    Molinari, D.; Menoni, S.; Aronica, G. T.; Ballio, F.; Berni, N.; Pandolfo, C.; Stelluti, M.; Minucci, G.

    2014-04-01

    In recent years, awareness of a need for more effective disaster data collection, storage, and sharing of analyses has developed in many parts of the world. In line with this advance, Italian local authorities have expressed the need for enhanced methods and procedures for post-event damage assessment in order to obtain data that can serve numerous purposes: to create a reliable and consistent database on the basis of which damage models can be defined or validated; and to supply a comprehensive scenario of flooding impacts according to which priorities can be identified during the emergency and recovery phase, and the compensation due to citizens from insurers or local authorities can be established. This paper studies this context, and describes ongoing activities in the Umbria and Sicily regions of Italy intended to identifying new tools and procedures for flood damage data surveys and storage in the aftermath of floods. In the first part of the paper, the current procedures for data gathering in Italy are analysed. The analysis shows that the available knowledge does not enable the definition or validation of damage curves, as information is poor, fragmented, and inconsistent. A new procedure for data collection and storage is therefore proposed. The entire analysis was carried out at a local level for the residential and commercial sectors only. The objective of the next steps for the research in the short term will be (i) to extend the procedure to other types of damage, and (ii) to make the procedure operational with the Italian Civil Protection system. The long-term aim is to develop specific depth-damage curves for Italian contexts.

  8. Italian energy conservation laws: Implementation problems

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Anon.

    1993-01-01

    Italian energy conservation Law No. 9 was designed to reduce Italy's worrisome 82% dependency on foreign energy supplies by encouraging the development and use of renewable energy sources, fuel diversification and auto-production/cogeneration by private industry. Law No. 10 was intended to promote energy conservation initiatives especially with regard to the efficient use of energy for space heating in public buildings. Both of these legal incentives have encountered great difficulties in implementation due to the inability of the Government to provide the necessary timely and sufficient start-up funds, as well as, due to the excessive bureaucratism that was built into the administrative procedures

  9. Energy agreements in Italian foreign policy making

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Puri Purini, A.

    1992-01-01

    The growing complexity of international relations, involving nations with vastly diverse political and socio-economic frameworks, levels of technology, geography, and environmental policies, are necessitating new Italian government policies which favour multilateral as opposed to conventional bilateral cooperation, especially in that which regards energy agreements. This paper makes this point in examining Italy's vulnerable energy supply and demand situation, the current directions being taken in this nation's foreign policies, and in assessing the key political and socio-economic factors now influencing this nation's world competitiveness in light of pending European unification and the opening up, on a wide scale, of Russian markets to Western nations and Japan

  10. The Italian programme in photovoltaic solar energy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Farinelli, U.

    Italian programs and goals for developing a photovoltaic (PV) industry and market are outlined. It is suggested that only a few megawatts of PVs will be produced for domestic consumption in the next few years, while the largest market is for developing nations where costly diesel-fueled generators are used. The installation of PV systems in developing areas will permit testing and scaling up of production capacities from several MW to several hundred MW and then to GW annual production. Approximately 55,000,000 was devoted to government research in PV in 1982 and a PV research laboratory is being built near Naples.

  11. Italian research on the Antarctic atmosphere

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    C. Rafanelli

    2003-06-01

    Full Text Available In this work after a short introduction on the structure of Programma Nazionale di Ricerche in Antartide, the different researches on atmospheric physics developed by Italian scientists are presented. The international activities are described, with particular attention both to APE experiment and the setting up of the new base in Dome-C. The results obtained are also discussed and the new projects proposed by SCAR or other international bodies are recalled. The reduction of funds and fall in young people interested in scientifi c studies represent the main problems for the future work.

  12. Assessment of flood risk in Tokyo metropolitan area

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hirano, J.; Dairaku, K.

    2013-12-01

    Flood is one of the most significant natural hazards in Japan. The Tokyo metropolitan area has been affected by several large flood disasters. Therefore, investigating potential flood risk in Tokyo metropolitan area is important for development of adaptation strategy for future climate change. We aim to develop a method for evaluating flood risk in Tokyo Metropolitan area by considering effect of historical land use and land cover change, socio-economic change, and climatic change. Ministry of land, infrastructure, transport and tourism in Japan published 'Statistics of flood', which contains data for flood causes, number of damaged houses, area of wetted surface, and total amount of damage for each flood at small municipal level. By using these flood data, we estimated damage by inundation inside a levee for each prefecture based on a statistical method. On the basis of estimated damage, we developed flood risk curves in the Tokyo metropolitan area, representing relationship between damage and exceedance probability of flood for the period 1976-2008 for each prefecture. Based on the flood risk curve, we attempted evaluate potential flood risk in the Tokyo metropolitan area and clarify the cause for regional difference of flood risk. By analyzing flood risk curves, we found out regional differences of flood risk. We identified high flood risk in Tokyo and Saitama prefecture. On the other hand, flood risk was relatively low in Ibaraki and Chiba prefecture. We found that these regional differences of flood risk can be attributed to spatial distribution of entire property value and ratio of damaged housing units in each prefecture.We also attempted to evaluate influence of climate change on potential flood risk by considering variation of precipitation amount and precipitation intensity in the Tokyo metropolitan area. Results shows that we can evaluate potential impact of precipitation change on flood risk with high accuracy by using our methodology. Acknowledgments

  13. Practicing Reflexivity in the Study of Italian Migrants in London

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seganti, Francesca Romana

    2010-01-01

    This article discusses the centrality of reflexivity in qualitative research through examples from my study on the role new media play in the lives of Italians in London. My hypothesis was that Italians were "in transit" in London and they were using new media to build "temporary" communities. I conducted in-depth interviews…

  14. Unpublished texts - Poesie | Cro | Italian Studies in Southern Africa ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Tra i suoi ultimi titoli The Noble Savage. Allegory of Freedom, Pirandello and the Baroque, The American Foundations of the Hispanic Utopia. I suoi testi poetici sono apparsi su VIA (Voices in Italian Americana), Gradiva e Canadian Journal of ItalianStudies. Ha pubblicato diversi articoli di critica teatrale e cinematografica su ...

  15. Notulae to the Italian alien vascular flora: 4

    OpenAIRE

    Galasso,Gabriele; Domina,Gianniantonio; Bonari,Gianmaria; Buono,Sergio; Chianese,Giuseppina; Cortesi,Gloria; Cortesi,Gloria; Iamonico,Duilio; Olivieri,Nicola; Peruzzi,Lorenzo; Pierini,Brunello; Roma-Marzio,Francesco; Scoppola,Anna; Soldano,Adriano; Stinca,Adriano

    2017-01-01

    In this contribution, new data concerning the Italian distribution of alien vascular flora are presented. It includes new records and exclusions for Italy or for Italian administrative regions of taxa in the genera Cedrus, Cenchrus, Citrus, Cyrtomium, Diospyros, Elaeagnus, Erigeron, Iris, Oenothera, Pavonia, Phytolacca, Styphnolobium, and Verbena. Furthermore, a new combination in the genus Amaranthus is proposed.

  16. Strategic Management Accounting in Universities: The Italian Experience

    Science.gov (United States)

    Agasisti, Tommaso; Arnaboldi, Michela; Azzone, Giovanni

    2008-01-01

    This paper presents an investigation of management accounting in four major Italian universities, which have been struggling to build their strategy in a context of significant change. Following many OECD countries the Italian government has been changing its higher education system by giving more autonomy to universities. These changes pose a…

  17. Attitudes toward Suicide: Italian and United States Physicians.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Domino, George; Perrone, Luisa

    1993-01-01

    Administered Suicide Opinion Questionnaire to 100 Italian and 100 U.S. physicians, comparable in age, gender, and medical field. Found significant difference on seven of eight scales, with Italian physicians showing greater agreement on mental illness, right to die, religion, impulsivity, normality, aggression, and moral evil scales. Found gender…

  18. Gesture and Identity in the Teaching and Learning of Italian

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peltier, Ilaria Nardotto; McCafferty, Steven G.

    2010-01-01

    This study investigated the use of mimetic gestures of identity by foreign language teachers of Italian and their students in college classes as a form of meaning-making. All four of the teachers were found to use a variety of Italian gestures as a regular aspect of their teaching and presentation of self. Students and teachers also were found to…

  19. Occupational Gender Stereotypes and Problem-Solving in Italian Adolescents

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ginevra, Maria Cristina; Nota, Laura

    2017-01-01

    The first purpose of the study was to establish how Italian adolescents perceive jobs in the newly emerging economy sectors as well as more traditional jobs from gender-stereotyped and gender-segregated perspectives. The second purpose was to verify the role of problem-solving and gender in gender-role stereotyping. A total of 217 Italian high…

  20. Collective Training & Thinking in JAMD : The Italian JPOWX Experience

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Jacobs, L.R.M.A.; Schavemaker-Piva, O.; Meijer, Y.G.S.; Nuvoloni, P.; Cioli, C.; Manca, R.; Argiolas, G.

    2009-01-01

    Mission Training through Distributed Simulation (MTDS) has established itself as a powerful tool for collective training in the military domain. This potential has been recognized by the Italian Joint Forces Command and has led to the Italian participation in the 10th edition of Exercise Joint

  1. Cost Efficiency and Returns to Scope in Italian Investment Firms

    OpenAIRE

    Marcello Basili; Fulvio Fontini

    2005-01-01

    This paper estimates cost efficiency and returns to scope of Italian investment firms during the period 1998-2002, following the stochastic frontier function approach. Results indicate a large inefficiency for Italian investment firms (with a high standard deviation across sample) and the absence of significant returns to scope

  2. Titulus Scuola: the new file classification schema for Italian schools

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gianni Penzo Doria

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available This article presents the new file classification schema national for Italian schools, produced by the Italian Directorate General of Archives of the Ministry for Cultural Heritage, within the project Titulus Scuola. This classification schema represents the starting point for a standard documental system, aimed at the digital administration.

  3. Italian R and D in field of environmental biotechnologies

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Robertiello, A.; Levi, G.

    1995-01-01

    The analysis carried out on the Italian R and D allows to draw the following conclusions: 1) There are about 1,000 'inside workers' totalling an outlay of 2,700 billion Italian Liras per year. 2) In the five years from 1987 to 1992, state financing to R and D on environmental biotechnologies was around 80 billion Italian Liras, averaging 16 billion Italian Liras a year. 3) Although these are rough estimates, it can be seen that, given the gap between resources made available and actual expense, there must be other incentive mechanism justifying the commitment of Italian R and D and the quality of the work so far carried out in this specific field. 4) These mechanisms could possibly be of two kinds; the realization that a large part of the market is dissatisfied; the pervasiveness of biotechnologies, especially in the field of environmental conservation

  4. Analysis Regarding the Growing Presence of Italian Firms in Romania

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stefano Valdemarin

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available At the end of 2014, the number of firms with an Italian presence in Romania was 39,556, representing 19.33% out of total registered firms and this number is still growing. This article focuses on answering the following question: what kind of Italian firms are investing in Romania and why? Starting from the empirical observation that the number of Italian firms in Romania grew by 6.82% last year, we have used a PESTEL analysis to find the key points characterizing the country, paying attention also to the concept of country brand. From the point of view of Italian firms, we have also analyzed the shifting paradigm of internationalization from a Vertical Foreign Direct Investment model to a Horizontal Foreign Direct Investment model. This paper can be useful for managers and entrepreneurs who are oriented towards investing in Romania following the path of Italian firms.

  5. ELECTRICITY DEMAND IN A NORTHERN MEXICO METROPOLITAN ECONOMY

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thomas M. Fullerton

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available Using an error correction framework, this study analyzes the long- and short-run dynamics of electricity demand in Ciudad Juarez, a large metropolitan economy on Mexico’s northern border. Demand is decomposed into the total number of electricity accounts and electricity usage per customer, each of which is modeled separately. A two-stage least squares approach is used to estimate the per customer electricity demand equations due to the endogeneity of the average price variable. The results indicate sustained growth in population, employment, and income can be expected to exert substantial upward pressure on regional electric power demand. Furthermore, demand is found to be price-inelastic in this metropolitan area, suggesting that rate increases can help raise the revenues necessary to fund expansion of the electrical grid.

  6. Analysis of Solid Waste Management and Strategies for Bangkok Metropolitan

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Palika Wannawilai

    2017-04-01

    Full Text Available This study aimed to examine and analyze strategic gaps and the environment of waste management of Bangkok Metropolitan Administration (BMA in order to suggest suitable waste management strategies for Bangkok Metropolitan. The study was conducted by interviewing BMA and districts’ administrators and officers, local leaders and people, and private sectors, conducting a focus group, as well as reviewing relevant documents. The data was analyzed by applying Gap analysis and SWOT analysis. The proposed five strategies are: 1 enhancement of efficiency in solid waste and hazardous waste management; 2 discipline, participation and responsibility of citizens and all sectors related to waste management; 3 appropriate and integrated waste management; 4 capacity building for BMA’s staff and improvement of solid waste management system; and 5 research and development of knowledge and technology in waste management. The study also suggested driving approaches for effective implementation of the strategies.

  7. Use of renewable energy in the greater metropolitan area

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Arias Garcia, Rocio; Castro Gomez, Gustavo; Fallas Cordero, Kenneth; Grant Chaves, Samuel; Mendez Parrales, Tony; Parajeles Fernandez, Ivan

    2012-01-01

    A study is conducted on different renewable energy within the larger metropolitan area, selecting the most suitable for the area and the implementation for distributed generation. A research methodology is practiced type pretending gather the necessary information to make proposals selected of different type of energy. The geography of the greater metropolitan area is studied along with the different existing renewable energy: distributed generation, remote measurement of energy which is one of the elements of the concept of intelligent networks (Smart Grid) in the electricity sector, legislation of Costa Rica regarding the generation of renewable energy and environmental impact. An analysis of economic feasibility is covered for each of the proposals estimating current rates for leading distributors of a future value, concluding with the viability of projects for possible execution of the same. (author) [es

  8. Urbanisation, urban growth and planning in the Copenhagen Metropolitan Region

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Fertner, Christian

    pressure. Growth management strategies are necessary to secure future balanced and sustainable development throughout the whole urban region. The analysis of urbanisation and urban growth in peri-urban areas is at the core of this study, including socio-demographic and functional dynamics, land use impacts...... and options for spatial planning. The main case was the metropolitan region of Copenhagen, Denmark. Other cases from Europe and the USA were used as reference studies. The methods included quantitative analyses of register and land use data as well as general case study work to investigate options for spatial...... planning. The study shows that, while the most visible impacts of land use changes can be found at the close urban fringe, many other dynamics have a much longer reach into the rural-urban region. In the Copenhagen metropolitan region, we can observe migration to peri-urban areas and to the urban core...

  9. Pathological Gambling among Italian Nursing Students.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cicolini, Giancarlo; Della Pelle, Carlo; Simonetti, Valentina; Comparcini, Dania; Sepede, Gianna; Cipollone, Francesco

    2018-04-01

    To investigate the role of psychiatric dimensions, behavioral or substance addictions and demographical variables as determinants of pathological gambling among nursing students. Multicenter cross-sectional study. From June to October 2015 a survey was carried out among Italian Nursing students. Data were collected using a six-section tool. Nursing students who completed the survey numbered 1083, 902 (83.3%) had some problems with gambling and 29 (2.7%) showed pathological gambling. Percentage of pathological gambling was significantly associate with illicit drug/alcohol use (65.5%; p=0.001) and with male gender (58.6%) comparing to student nurse with non-pathological gambling (20%) and those with some problem (24.2%). Significant main effect was observed for IAT score (Beta=0.119, t=3.28, p=0.001): higher IAT scores were associated with higher SOGS scores. Italian nursing students have some problems with gambling and pathological gambling problem, and males are those who have more problems. Results might be useful for faculties of health professionals to identify students at risk in an early stage, to direct prevention tailored interventions. Nursing faculties should be aware of the prevalence of Gambling among students. Prevention interventions should be planned to minimize the risk of gambling behavior in the future nurses' health care workers. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  10. Computerized Italian criticality guide, description and validation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Carotenuto, M.; Landeyro, P.A.

    1988-10-01

    Our group is developing an 'expert system' for collecting engineering know-how on back-end nuclear plant design. An expert system is the most suitable software tool for our problem. During the analysis, the design process was divided into different branches. At each branch of the design process the Expert System relates a computerized design procedure. Any design procedure is composed of a set of design methods, together with their condition of application and reliability limits. In the framework of this expert system, the nuclear criticality safety analysis procedure was developed, in the form of a computerized criticality guide, attempting to reproduce the designer's normal 'reasoning' process. The criticality guide is composed of two parts: A computerized text, including theory, a description of the accidents occurred in the past and a description of the italian design experience; An interactive computer aided calculation module, containing a graphical facility for critical parameter curves. In the present report are presented the criticality guide (computerized Italian Criticality Guide) and its validation test. (author)

  11. Education in Soil Science: the Italian approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Benedetti, Anna; Canfora, Loredana; Dazzi, Carmelo; Lo Papa, Giuseppe

    2017-04-01

    The Italian Society of Soil Science (SISS) was founded in Florence on February 18th, 1952. It is an association legally acknowledged by Decree of the President of the Italian Republic in February 1957. The Society is member of the International Union of Soil Sciences (IUSS) of the European Confederation of Soil Science Societies (ECSSS) and collaborates with several companies, institutions and organizations having similar objectives or policy aspects. SISS promotes progress, coordination and dissemination of soil science and its applications encouraging relationships and collaborations among soil lovers. Within the SISS there are Working Groups and Technical Committees for specific issues of interest. In particular: • the Working Group on Pedotechniques; • the Working Group on Hydromorphic and Subaqueous Soils and • the Technical Committee for Soil Education and Public Awareness. In this communication we wish to stress the activities developed since its foundation by SISS to spread soil awareness and education in Italy through this last Technical Committee, focusing also the aspect concerning grants for young graduates and PhD graduates to stimulate the involvement of young people in the field of soil science. Keywords: SISS, soil education and awareness.

  12. Determinants of health disparities between Italian regions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Giannoni Margherita

    2010-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Among European countries, Italy is one of the countries where regional health disparities contribute substantially to socioeconomic health disparities. In this paper, we report on regional differences in self-reported poor health and explore possible determinants at the individual and regional levels in Italy. Methods We use data from the "Indagine Multiscopo sulle Famiglie", a survey of aspects of everyday life in the Italian population, to estimate multilevel logistic regressions that model poor self-reported health as a function of individual and regional socioeconomic factors. Next we use the causal step approach to test if living conditions, healthcare characteristics, social isolation, and health behaviors at the regional level mediate the relationship between regional socioeconomic factors and self-rated health. Results We find that residents living in regions with more poverty, more unemployment, and more income inequality are more likely to report poor health and that poor living conditions and private share of healthcare expenditures at the regional level mediate socioeconomic disparities in self-rated health among Italian regions. Conclusion The implications are that regional contexts matter and that regional policies in Italy have the potential to reduce health disparities by implementing interventions aimed at improving living conditions and access to quality healthcare.

  13. Computerized Italian criticality guide, description and validation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Carotenuto, M; Landeyro, P A [ENEA - Dipartimento Ciclo del Combustibile, Centro Ricerche Energia, Casaccia (Italy)

    1988-10-15

    Our group is developing an 'expert system' for collecting engineering know-how on back-end nuclear plant design. An expert system is the most suitable software tool for our problem. During the analysis, the design process was divided into different branches. At each branch of the design process the Expert System relates a computerized design procedure. Any design procedure is composed of a set of design methods, together with their condition of application and reliability limits. In the framework of this expert system, the nuclear criticality safety analysis procedure was developed, in the form of a computerized criticality guide, attempting to reproduce the designer's normal 'reasoning' process. The criticality guide is composed of two parts: A computerized text, including theory, a description of the accidents occurred in the past and a description of the italian design experience; An interactive computer aided calculation module, containing a graphical facility for critical parameter curves. In the present report are presented the criticality guide (computerized Italian Criticality Guide) and its validation test. (author)

  14. The Italian Tau/charm project

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Biagini Maria Enrica

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available A τ/charm Factory, an e + e- collider with very high luminosity at the 2–4.6 GeV center of mass energy, to be built on the Rome University at Tor Vergata campus, was studied by the Consortium Nicola Cabibbo Laboratory and the INFN Frascati Laboratories. This project is the natural evolution of the flagship Italian project SuperB Factory, funded by the Italian Government in 2010 with a budget that turned out to be insufficient to cover the total costs of the project. The study of rare events at the τ/charm energy was already planned as a Phase-II of SuperB [1]. This design keeps all the unique features of SuperB, including the polarization of the electron beam, with the possibility to take data in a larger energy range, with reduced accelerator dimensions and construction and operation costs. A Report on the accelerator design has been published in September 2013 [2].

  15. Avian Metapneumovirus circulation in Italian broiler farms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tucciarone, Claudia Maria; Franzo, Giovanni; Lupini, Caterina; Alejo, Carolina Torres; Listorti, Valeria; Mescolini, Giulia; Brandão, Paulo Eduardo; Martini, Marco; Catelli, Elena; Cecchinato, Mattia

    2018-02-01

    With increasing frequency, avian Metapneumovirus (aMPV) is reported to induce respiratory signs in chickens. An adequate knowledge of current aMPV prevalence among Italian broilers is lacking, with little information available on its economical and health impact on the poultry industry. In order to collect preliminary data on the epidemiological context of aMPV in broiler flocks, a survey was performed in areas of Northern Italy with high poultry density from 2014 to 2016. Upper respiratory tract swabs were collected and processed by A and B subtype-specific multiplex real-time reverse transcription PCR (RT-PCR). Samples were also screened for infectious bronchitis virus (IBV) by generic RT-PCR and sequencing. Productive data and respiratory signs were detailed where possible. The high prevalence of aMPV was confirmed in broilers older than 26 d and also attested in IBV-negative farms. All aMPV detections belonged to subtype B. Italian strain genetic variability was evaluated by the partial attachment (G) gene sequencing of selected strains and compared with contemporary turkey strains and previously published aMPV references, revealing no host specificity and the progressive evolution of this virus in Italy. © 2017 Poultry Science Association Inc.

  16. Proficiency in English sentence stress production by Cantonese speakers who speak English as a second language (ESL).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ng, Manwa L; Chen, Yang

    2011-12-01

    The present study examined English sentence stress produced by native Cantonese speakers who were speaking English as a second language (ESL). Cantonese ESL speakers' proficiency in English stress production as perceived by English-speaking listeners was also studied. Acoustical parameters associated with sentence stress including fundamental frequency (F0), vowel duration, and intensity were measured from the English sentences produced by 40 Cantonese ESL speakers. Data were compared with those obtained from 40 native speakers of American English. The speech samples were also judged by eight native listeners who were native speakers of American English for placement, degree, and naturalness of stress. Results showed that Cantonese ESL speakers were able to use F0, vowel duration, and intensity to differentiate sentence stress patterns. Yet, both female and male Cantonese ESL speakers exhibited consistently higher F0 in stressed words than English speakers. Overall, Cantonese ESL speakers were found to be proficient in using duration and intensity to signal sentence stress, in a way comparable with English speakers. In addition, F0 and intensity were found to correlate closely with perceptual judgement and the degree of stress with the naturalness of stress.

  17. FINANCING FARMLAND PRESERVATION: THE TWIN CITIES METROPOLITAN AREA EXPERIENCE

    OpenAIRE

    Greden, Leah R.; Taff, Steven J.

    1994-01-01

    Two farmland protection programs in the Twin Cities (Minnesota) Metropolitan Area--Green Acres and Agricultural Preserves-- together enrolled 608,331 acres in 1992. The principal financing tool was a provision common to both programs under which participating landowners paid reduced property taxes in exchange for certain non- development assurances. The resulting shift in property tax obligations to other taxpayers amounted to $7.6 million for the 1993 tax year, an average shift of $12.50 per...

  18. Skinner boxes for psychotics: Operant conditioning at Metropolitan state hospital

    OpenAIRE

    Rutherford, Alexandra

    2003-01-01

    Between 1953 and 1965, Ogden Lindsley and his associates conducted free-operant research with psychiatric inpatients and normal volunteers at Metropolitan State Hospital in Waltham, Massachusetts. Their project, originally named “Studies in Behavior Therapy,” was renamed “Harvard Medical School Behavior Research Laboratory” in 1955. This name change and its implications were significant. The role of the laboratory in the history of the relationship between the experimental analysis of behavio...

  19. SPATIAL SEGMENTATION WITHIN METROPOLITAN LABOUR MARKET: MAPPING THE GENDER DIMENSION

    OpenAIRE

    DEBNATH, TANIA

    2017-01-01

    Spatial segmentation of the labour market of informal workers within the metropolitan is observed globally. InIndia it is not only compartmentalised on gender, caste, ethnic lines but also geographically segmented by thecreation of spatially disjoined markets. The differential impact of this limited mobility on female and malelabour remains largely unexplored. The present paper argues that the labour market for informal workers issegmented into smaller labour markets separated by commuting (h...

  20. Factors Influencing Patronage Of Medical Tourism In Metropolitan Lagos Nigeria

    OpenAIRE

    Omisore; E.O.; Agbabiaka; H. I.

    2015-01-01

    Since medical tourism attract patient from various origin to seek medical services at different destinations it is paramount to consider the factors that motivate patrons decision on medical tourism. Hence this study assesses the factors influencing patronage of medical tourism in Lagos metropolis Nigeria. Lagos State is situated in the southwestern corner of Nigeria it lies within Latitudes 62N to 64N of the Equator and Longitudes 245E to 420E of the Greenwich meridian. Metropolitan Lagos is...

  1. The determinants of part-time work in Metropolitan Lima

    OpenAIRE

    Manuel Enrique Saavedra Martinez

    2011-01-01

    The following paper examines the part-time work in Metropolitan Lima in 2008. The overall objective is to identify the determinants of the incidence of part-time work in Lima. We worked with one Probit econometric model, measured by the National Survey of Households (NSH), which explores the job characteristics of people. This will determine the presence of part-time workers in the areas of trade, health, education and communication; also realized that this group has completed university stud...

  2. The determinants of part-time work in Metropolitan Lima

    OpenAIRE

    Saavedra Martinez, Manuel Enrique

    2012-01-01

    The following paper examines the part-time work in Metropolitan Lima in 2008. The overall objective is to identify the determinants of the incidence of part-time work in Lima. We worked with one Probit econometric model, measured by the National Survey of Households (NSH), which explores the job characteristics of people. This will determine the presence of part-time workers in the areas of trade, health, education and communication; also realized that this group has completed university stud...

  3. The 1987 Whittier Narrows, California, earthquake: A Metropolitan shock

    OpenAIRE

    Hauksson, Egill; Stein, Ross S.

    1989-01-01

    Just 3 hours after the Whittier Narrows earthquake struck, it became clear that a heretofore unseen geological structure was seismically active beneath metropolitan Los Angeles. Contrary to initial expectations of strike-slip or oblique-slip motion on the Whittier fault, whose north end abuts the aftershock zone, the focal mechanism of the mainshock showed pure thrust faulting on a deep gently inclined surface [Hauksson et al., 1988]. This collection of nine research reports spans the spectru...

  4. Italian research on Antarctic atmosphere: 1st workshop. Ricerche italiane sull'atmosfera antartica: 1o workshop

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Colacino, M. (ed.); Giovannelli, G. (ed.); Stefanutti, L. (ed.)

    1989-01-01

    The papers and reports, presented at this 1st workshop on 'Italian research on antarctic atmosphere', deal with several main topics: meteorology and climatology, aerosol and tropospheric clouds, planetary boundary layer, chemical-physic stratospheric property, aeronomy. They define the stage of development of Italian research in this area after 3 years of activity in Antarctica.

  5. Green Urbanism for the Greener Future of Metropolitan Areas

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zaręba, Anna; Krzemińska, Alicja; Widawski, Krzysztof

    2016-10-01

    Intensive urbanization is swallowing municipal green areas which causes intensification of erosion, decrease in biodiversity and permanent fragmentation of habitats. In the face of these changes, a risk of irreversible damages to urban ecosystems is growing. That is why planning of solutions within the framework of Green Urbanism in metropolitan areas inhabited by over 55% of the global population is of extraordinary importance. The task of the paper is to present patterns of the Green Urbanism using selected examples of metropolitan areas as case studies. The main goal of the research is to make comparison between GU practices in different countries, in various spatial settings. The principles of triple zero framework: zero fossil-fuel energy use, zero waste, zero emissions (from low-to-no-carbon emissions) introduce not only the contemporary trends in theoretical urban planning but are dictated by practical considerations to create a healthy environment for a healthy society with a minimized environmental footprint. The research results help to identify Green Urbanism techniques used for multiple functions, including ecological, recreational, cultural, aesthetic and other uses and present opportunities for implementation of Green Urbanism solutions in metropolitan areas. To achieve healthier society and environment, highly congested and polluted cities have to be recreated through working with the existing landscape, topography and natural resources particular to the site.

  6. Uber and Metropolitan Traffic Fatalities in the United States.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brazil, Noli; Kirk, David S

    2016-08-01

    Uber and similar rideshare services are rapidly dispersing in cities across the United States and beyond. Given the convenience and low cost, Uber has been characterized as a potential countermeasure for reducing the estimated 121 million episodes of drunk driving and the 10,000 resulting traffic fatalities that occur annually in the United States. We exploited differences in the timing of the deployment of Uber in US metropolitan counties from 2005 to 2014 to test the association between the availability of Uber's rideshare services and total, drunk driving-related, and weekend- and holiday-specific traffic fatalities in the 100 most populated metropolitan areas in the United States using negative binomial and Poisson regression models. We found that the deployment of Uber services in a given metropolitan county had no association with the number of subsequent traffic fatalities, whether measured in aggregate or specific to drunk-driving fatalities or fatalities during weekends and holidays. © The Author 2016. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  7. Twelve metropolitan carbon footprints. A preliminary comparative global assessment

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sovacool, Benjamin K.; Brown, Marilyn A.

    2010-01-01

    A dearth of available data on carbon emissions and comparative analysis between metropolitan areas make it difficult to confirm or refute best practices and policies. To help provide benchmarks and expand our understanding of urban centers and climate change, this article offers a preliminary comparison of the carbon footprints of 12 metropolitan areas. It does this by examining emissions related to vehicles, energy used in buildings, industry, agriculture, and waste. The carbon emissions from these sources - discussed here as the metro area's partial carbon footprint - provide a foundation for identifying the pricing, land use, help metropolitan areas throughout the world respond to climate change. The article begins by exploring a sample of the existing literature on urban morphology and climate change and explaining the methodology used to calculate each area's carbon footprint. The article then depicts the specific carbon footprints for Beijing, Jakarta, London, Los Angeles, Manila, Mexico City, New Delhi, New York, Sao Paulo, Seoul, Singapore, and Tokyo and compares these to respective national averages. It concludes by offering suggestions for how city planners and policymakers can reduce the carbon footprint of these and possibly other large urban areas. (author)

  8. Is Urban Planning in Australia Hindered by Poor Metropolitan Governance?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Paul Burton

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available There are many calls for urban planning in Australia to be reformed, although often in contradictory ways. For example, some argue it should be capable of delivering greater certainty to developers while others call for more flexibility in processes of urban development regulation; some would like to roll back its regulatory impact while others argue for a renewal of planning’s commitment to promoting social and spatial justice. The Australian planning system is also held to be hindered by a comparative lack of planning at and for the metropolitan scale. This is connected to the absence of well-developed structures of metropolitan governance in what is a three-tier federal system, with most power over planning concentrated at the State and Territory government scale. The paper explores this putative hindrance by considering three important issues in Australian urban policy debates about the efficacy of contemporary multi-level governance arrangements: spatial scale; identity and legitimacy; and efficiency and effectiveness. It includes some analysis of the case made for a more explicit and rigorous national urban policy and how this might relate to lower level planning regimes. The paper focuses on recent urban policy and planning initiatives in South East Queensland, one of Australia’s fastest growing metropolitan regions, and concludes that while incremental but nonetheless significant improvements in planning policy and practice are possible, these are unlikely to satisfy those calling for more radical changes to improve the Australian planning system.

  9. Complimenting Functions by Native English Speakers and Iranian EFL Learners: A Divergence or Convergence

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ali Akbar Ansarin

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available The study of compliment speech act has been under investigation on many occasions in recent years. In this study, an attempt is made to explore appraisals performed by native English speakers and Iranian EFL learners to find out how these two groups diverge or converge from each other with regard to complimenting patterns and norms. The participants of the study were 60 advanced Iranian EFL learners who were speaking Persian as their first language and 60 native English speakers. Through a written Discourse Completion Task comprised of eight different scenarios, compliments were analyzed with regard to topics (performance, personality, possession, and skill, functions (explicit, implicit, and opt-out, gender differences and the common positive adjectives used by two groups of native and nonnative participants. The findings suggested that native English speakers praised individuals more implicitly in comparison with Iranian EFL learners and native speakers provided opt-outs more frequently than Iranian EFL learners did. The analysis of data by Chi-square showed that gender and macro functions are independent of each other among Iranian EFL learners’ compliments while for native speakers, gender played a significant role in the distribution of appraisals. Iranian EFL learners’ complimenting patterns converge more towards those of native English speakers. Moreover, both groups favored explicit compliments. However, Iranian EFL learners were more inclined to provide explicit compliments. It can be concluded that there were more similarities rather than differences between Iranian EFL learners and native English speakers regarding compliment speech act. The results of this study can benefit researchers, teachers, material developers, and EFL learners.

  10. Physiological Indices of Bilingualism: Oral–Motor Coordination and Speech Rate in Bengali–English Speakers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chakraborty, Rahul; Goffman, Lisa; Smith, Anne

    2009-01-01

    Purpose To examine how age of immersion and proficiency in a 2nd language influence speech movement variability and speaking rate in both a 1st language and a 2nd language. Method A group of 21 Bengali–English bilingual speakers participated. Lip and jaw movements were recorded. For all 21 speakers, lip movement variability was assessed based on productions of Bengali (L1; 1st language) and English (L2; 2nd language) sentences. For analyses related to the influence of L2 proficiency on speech production processes, participants were sorted into low- (n = 7) and high-proficiency (n = 7) groups. Lip movement variability and speech rate were evaluated for both of these groups across L1 and L2 sentences. Results Surprisingly, adult bilingual speakers produced equally consistent speech movement patterns in their production of L1 and L2. When groups were sorted according to proficiency, highly proficient speakers were marginally more variable in their L1. In addition, there were some phoneme-specific effects, most markedly that segments not shared by both languages were treated differently in production. Consistent with previous studies, movement durations were longer for less proficient speakers in both L1 and L2. Interpretation In contrast to those of child learners, the speech motor systems of adult L2 speakers show a high degree of consistency. Such lack of variability presumably contributes to protracted difficulties with acquiring nativelike pronunciation in L2. The proficiency results suggest bidirectional interactions across L1 and L2, which is consistent with hypotheses regarding interference and the sharing of phonological space. A slower speech rate in less proficient speakers implies that there are increased task demands on speech production processes. PMID:18367680

  11. Tokyo Metropolitan Earthquake Preparedness Project - A Progress Report

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hayashi, H.

    2010-12-01

    Munich Re once ranked that Tokyo metropolitan region, the capital of Japan, is the most vulnerable area for earthquake disasters, followed by San Francisco Bay Area, US and Osaka, Japan. Seismologists also predict that Tokyo metropolitan region may have at least one near-field earthquake with a probability of 70% for the next 30 years. Given this prediction, Japanese Government took it seriously to conduct damage estimations and revealed that, as the worst case scenario, if a7.3 magnitude earthquake under heavy winds as shown in the fig. 1, it would kill a total of 11,000 people and a total of direct and indirect losses would amount to 112,000,000,000,000 yen(1,300,000,000,000, 1=85yen) . In addition to mortality and financial losses, a total of 25 million people would be severely impacted by this earthquake in four prefectures. If this earthquake occurs, 300,000 elevators will be stopped suddenly, and 12,500 persons would be confined in them for a long time. Seven million people will come to use over 20,000 public shelters spread over the impacted area. Over one millions temporary housing units should be built to accommodate 4.6 million people who lost their dwellings. 2.5 million people will relocate to outside of the damaged area. In short, an unprecedented scale of earthquake disaster is expected and we must prepare for it. Even though disaster mitigation is undoubtedly the best solution, it is more realistic that the expected earthquake would hit before we complete this business. In other words, we must take into account another solution to make the people and the assets in this region more resilient for the Tokyo metropolitan earthquake. This is the question we have been tackling with for the last four years. To increase societal resilience for Tokyo metropolitan earthquake, we adopted a holistic approach to integrate both emergency response and long-term recovery. There are three goals for long-term recovery, which consists of Physical recovery, Economic

  12. Earthquake Risk Mitigation in the Tokyo Metropolitan area

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hirata, N.; Sakai, S.; Kasahara, K.; Nakagawa, S.; Nanjo, K.; Panayotopoulos, Y.; Tsuruoka, H.

    2010-12-01

    Seismic disaster risk mitigation in urban areas constitutes a challenge through collaboration of scientific, engineering, and social-science fields. Examples of collaborative efforts include research on detailed plate structure with identification of all significant faults, developing dense seismic networks; strong ground motion prediction, which uses information on near-surface seismic site effects and fault models; earthquake resistant and proof structures; and cross-discipline infrastructure for effective risk mitigation just after catastrophic events. Risk mitigation strategy for the next greater earthquake caused by the Philippine Sea plate (PSP) subducting beneath the Tokyo metropolitan area is of major concern because it caused past mega-thrust earthquakes, such as the 1703 Genroku earthquake (magnitude M8.0) and the 1923 Kanto earthquake (M7.9) which had 105,000 fatalities. A M7 or greater (M7+) earthquake in this area at present has high potential to produce devastating loss of life and property with even greater global economic repercussions. The Central Disaster Management Council of Japan estimates that the M7+ earthquake will cause 11,000 fatalities and 112 trillion yen (about 1 trillion US$) economic loss. This earthquake is evaluated to occur with a probability of 70% in 30 years by the Earthquake Research Committee of Japan. In order to mitigate disaster for greater Tokyo, the Special Project for Earthquake Disaster Mitigation in the Tokyo Metropolitan Area (2007-2011) was launched in collaboration with scientists, engineers, and social-scientists in nationwide institutions. The results that are obtained in the respective fields will be integrated until project termination to improve information on the strategy assessment for seismic risk mitigation in the Tokyo metropolitan area. In this talk, we give an outline of our project as an example of collaborative research on earthquake risk mitigation. Discussion is extended to our effort in progress and

  13. Phoneme Error Pattern by Heritage Speakers of Spanish on an English Word Recognition Test.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shi, Lu-Feng

    2017-04-01

    Heritage speakers acquire their native language from home use in their early childhood. As the native language is typically a minority language in the society, these individuals receive their formal education in the majority language and eventually develop greater competency with the majority than their native language. To date, there have not been specific research attempts to understand word recognition by heritage speakers. It is not clear if and to what degree we may infer from evidence based on bilingual listeners in general. This preliminary study investigated how heritage speakers of Spanish perform on an English word recognition test and analyzed their phoneme errors. A prospective, cross-sectional, observational design was employed. Twelve normal-hearing adult Spanish heritage speakers (four men, eight women, 20-38 yr old) participated in the study. Their language background was obtained through the Language Experience and Proficiency Questionnaire. Nine English monolingual listeners (three men, six women, 20-41 yr old) were also included for comparison purposes. Listeners were presented with 200 Northwestern University Auditory Test No. 6 words in quiet. They repeated each word orally and in writing. Their responses were scored by word, word-initial consonant, vowel, and word-final consonant. Performance was compared between groups with Student's t test or analysis of variance. Group-specific error patterns were primarily descriptive, but intergroup comparisons were made using 95% or 99% confidence intervals for proportional data. The two groups of listeners yielded comparable scores when their responses were examined by word, vowel, and final consonant. However, heritage speakers of Spanish misidentified significantly more word-initial consonants and had significantly more difficulty with initial /p, b, h/ than their monolingual peers. The two groups yielded similar patterns for vowel and word-final consonants, but heritage speakers made significantly

  14. Goethe's Italian Journey and the geological landscape

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coratza, Paola; Panizza, Mario

    2015-04-01

    Over 220 years ago Johann Wolfgang von Goethe undertook a nearly two-years long and fascinating journey to Italy, a destination dreamed for a long time by the great German writer. During his journey from Alps to Sicily Goethe reflects on landscape, geology, morphology of "Il Bel Paese", sometimes providing detailed descriptions and acute observations concerning the great and enduring laws by which the earth and all within it are governed. He was an observer, with the eye of the geologist and landscape painter, as he himself stated, and therefore he had a 360 degree focus on all parts of the territory. From the Brenner Pass to Sicily, Goethe reflects on landscape, contrasting morphologies, the genesis of territories, providing detailed descriptions useful for reconstructing the conditions of the territory and crops of the late 18th century. His diary is a description of the impressions he received from the country and its people, mingled with reflections upon art, science and literature. Goethe studied mineralogical and geological phenomena and drew up notes on the life of the people, the climate and the plants. On various scientific occasions and, in particular, within the framework of the Italian Association "Geologia & Turismo", of the Working Group "Geomorphosites" of the International Association of Geomorphologists and the International Year of Planet Earth, the opportunity to re-examine Goethe's travels in Italy from a geological viewpoint was recognised. In the present paper an attempt was made to reproduce the geotourism itinerary ante litteram of the writer to Italy, one of the most important tourist destination worldwide, thanks to its rich cultural and natural heritage and the outstanding aesthetic qualities of the complex natural landscape. This project was essentially conceived with a twofold purpose. First of all, an attempt was made to reproduce the journey of a great writer, as an example of description of landscape perceived and described as

  15. EQUAL OPPORTUNITIES IN THE ITALIAN LABOUR MARKET

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    Balazs-Foldi Emese

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available The integration of persons with disabilities and with reduced work capacity in the labour market represents one of the biggest challenges for labour market policies. The non-integration of disabled people in the labour market causes huge costs for the countries’ economy. The European Union’s aim is to transform passive social support into active support by means of labor market policy measures, to help people to obtain gainful employment and to raise employment levels of people with disabilities and with reduced work capacities. Earlier this target group has to work in the sheltered employment. But it changed from the 90’s years because of the social model of disability definition. Nowadays the main goal to help this target group integrates in the open employment. The members of European Union imagine this aim on other way. The Scandinavian countries or England prefer the equal opportunities and the personalised mainstreaming programmes and services. Other European countries, as Germany, Austria or Italy prefer the rehabilitation quota system. Thus, the labor force participation and employment rates for people with disabilities and with reduced working capacities are strong differences between the European countries. But lot of other options also influence the member of countries’ policy and employment system. Since the Amsterdam Treaty the European Union has devoted exceptional attention to the equal opportunities of disabled people, the enforcement of equal treatment, and the reduction of the dangers of discrimination, as it is, a significant part of persons with disabilities and reduced work capacity do not have a full-time job, they become unemployed two or three times more frequently than their abled-counterparts, and dispose of lower salary, therefore they need the help of their family and the community. This study examines the Italian situation. It bases on statistics on the Italian target group and provides comparisons with

  16. Combining Behavioral and ERP Methodologies to Investigate the Differences Between McGurk Effects Demonstrated by Cantonese and Mandarin Speakers

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    Juan Zhang

    2018-05-01

    Full Text Available The present study investigated the impact of Chinese dialects on McGurk effect using behavioral and event-related potential (ERP methodologies. Specifically, intra-language comparison of McGurk effect was conducted between Mandarin and Cantonese speakers. The behavioral results showed that Cantonese speakers exhibited a stronger McGurk effect in audiovisual speech perception compared to Mandarin speakers, although both groups performed equally in the auditory and visual conditions. ERP results revealed that Cantonese speakers were more sensitive to visual cues than Mandarin speakers, though this was not the case for the auditory cues. Taken together, the current findings suggest that the McGurk effect generated by Chinese speakers is mainly influenced by segmental phonology during audiovisual speech integration.

  17. Combining Behavioral and ERP Methodologies to Investigate the Differences Between McGurk Effects Demonstrated by Cantonese and Mandarin Speakers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Juan; Meng, Yaxuan; McBride, Catherine; Fan, Xitao; Yuan, Zhen

    2018-01-01

    The present study investigated the impact of Chinese dialects on McGurk effect using behavioral and event-related potential (ERP) methodologies. Specifically, intra-language comparison of McGurk effect was conducted between Mandarin and Cantonese speakers. The behavioral results showed that Cantonese speakers exhibited a stronger McGurk effect in audiovisual speech perception compared to Mandarin speakers, although both groups performed equally in the auditory and visual conditions. ERP results revealed that Cantonese speakers were more sensitive to visual cues than Mandarin speakers, though this was not the case for the auditory cues. Taken together, the current findings suggest that the McGurk effect generated by Chinese speakers is mainly influenced by segmental phonology during audiovisual speech integration. PMID:29780312

  18. Musical Sophistication and the Effect of Complexity on Auditory Discrimination in Finnish Speakers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dawson, Caitlin; Aalto, Daniel; Šimko, Juraj; Vainio, Martti; Tervaniemi, Mari

    2017-01-01

    Musical experiences and native language are both known to affect auditory processing. The present work aims to disentangle the influences of native language phonology and musicality on behavioral and subcortical sound feature processing in a population of musically diverse Finnish speakers as well as to investigate the specificity of enhancement from musical training. Finnish speakers are highly sensitive to duration cues since in Finnish, vowel and consonant duration determine word meaning. Using a correlational approach with a set of behavioral sound feature discrimination tasks, brainstem recordings, and a musical sophistication questionnaire, we find no evidence for an association between musical sophistication and more precise duration processing in Finnish speakers either in the auditory brainstem response or in behavioral tasks, but they do show an enhanced pitch discrimination compared to Finnish speakers with less musical experience and show greater duration modulation in a complex task. These results are consistent with a ceiling effect set for certain sound features which corresponds to the phonology of the native language, leaving an opportunity for music experience-based enhancement of sound features not explicitly encoded in the language (such as pitch, which is not explicitly encoded in Finnish). Finally, the pattern of duration modulation in more musically sophisticated Finnish speakers suggests integrated feature processing for greater efficiency in a real world musical situation. These results have implications for research into the specificity of plasticity in the auditory system as well as to the effects of interaction of specific language features with musical experiences. PMID:28450829

  19. Musical Sophistication and the Effect of Complexity on Auditory Discrimination in Finnish Speakers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dawson, Caitlin; Aalto, Daniel; Šimko, Juraj; Vainio, Martti; Tervaniemi, Mari

    2017-01-01

    Musical experiences and native language are both known to affect auditory processing. The present work aims to disentangle the influences of native language phonology and musicality on behavioral and subcortical sound feature processing in a population of musically diverse Finnish speakers as well as to investigate the specificity of enhancement from musical training. Finnish speakers are highly sensitive to duration cues since in Finnish, vowel and consonant duration determine word meaning. Using a correlational approach with a set of behavioral sound feature discrimination tasks, brainstem recordings, and a musical sophistication questionnaire, we find no evidence for an association between musical sophistication and more precise duration processing in Finnish speakers either in the auditory brainstem response or in behavioral tasks, but they do show an enhanced pitch discrimination compared to Finnish speakers with less musical experience and show greater duration modulation in a complex task. These results are consistent with a ceiling effect set for certain sound features which corresponds to the phonology of the native language, leaving an opportunity for music experience-based enhancement of sound features not explicitly encoded in the language (such as pitch, which is not explicitly encoded in Finnish). Finally, the pattern of duration modulation in more musically sophisticated Finnish speakers suggests integrated feature processing for greater efficiency in a real world musical situation. These results have implications for research into the specificity of plasticity in the auditory system as well as to the effects of interaction of specific language features with musical experiences.

  20. Encoding, rehearsal, and recall in signers and speakers: shared network but differential engagement.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bavelier, D; Newman, A J; Mukherjee, M; Hauser, P; Kemeny, S; Braun, A; Boutla, M

    2008-10-01

    Short-term memory (STM), or the ability to hold verbal information in mind for a few seconds, is known to rely on the integrity of a frontoparietal network of areas. Here, we used functional magnetic resonance imaging to ask whether a similar network is engaged when verbal information is conveyed through a visuospatial language, American Sign Language, rather than speech. Deaf native signers and hearing native English speakers performed a verbal recall task, where they had to first encode a list of letters in memory, maintain it for a few seconds, and finally recall it in the order presented. The frontoparietal network described to mediate STM in speakers was also observed in signers, with its recruitment appearing independent of the modality of the language. This finding supports the view that signed and spoken STM rely on similar mechanisms. However, deaf signers and hearing speakers differentially engaged key structures of the frontoparietal network as the stages of STM unfold. In particular, deaf signers relied to a greater extent than hearing speakers on passive memory storage areas during encoding and maintenance, but on executive process areas during recall. This work opens new avenues for understanding similarities and differences in STM performance in signers and speakers.

  1. Analysis of Acoustic Features in Speakers with Cognitive Disorders and Speech Impairments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saz, Oscar; Simón, Javier; Rodríguez, W. Ricardo; Lleida, Eduardo; Vaquero, Carlos

    2009-12-01

    This work presents the results in the analysis of the acoustic features (formants and the three suprasegmental features: tone, intensity and duration) of the vowel production in a group of 14 young speakers suffering different kinds of speech impairments due to physical and cognitive disorders. A corpus with unimpaired children's speech is used to determine the reference values for these features in speakers without any kind of speech impairment within the same domain of the impaired speakers; this is 57 isolated words. The signal processing to extract the formant and pitch values is based on a Linear Prediction Coefficients (LPCs) analysis of the segments considered as vowels in a Hidden Markov Model (HMM) based Viterbi forced alignment. Intensity and duration are also based in the outcome of the automated segmentation. As main conclusion of the work, it is shown that intelligibility of the vowel production is lowered in impaired speakers even when the vowel is perceived as correct by human labelers. The decrease in intelligibility is due to a 30% of increase in confusability in the formants map, a reduction of 50% in the discriminative power in energy between stressed and unstressed vowels and to a 50% increase of the standard deviation in the length of the vowels. On the other hand, impaired speakers keep good control of tone in the production of stressed and unstressed vowels.

  2. Age differences in vocal emotion perception: on the role of speaker age and listener sex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sen, Antarika; Isaacowitz, Derek; Schirmer, Annett

    2017-10-24

    Older adults have greater difficulty than younger adults perceiving vocal emotions. To better characterise this effect, we explored its relation to age differences in sensory, cognitive and emotional functioning. Additionally, we examined the role of speaker age and listener sex. Participants (N = 163) aged 19-34 years and 60-85 years categorised neutral sentences spoken by ten younger and ten older speakers with a happy, neutral, sad, or angry voice. Acoustic analyses indicated that expressions from younger and older speakers denoted the intended emotion with similar accuracy. As expected, younger participants outperformed older participants and this effect was statistically mediated by an age-related decline in both optimism and working-memory. Additionally, age differences in emotion perception were larger for younger as compared to older speakers and a better perception of younger as compared to older speakers was greater in younger as compared to older participants. Last, a female perception benefit was less pervasive in the older than the younger group. Together, these findings suggest that the role of age for emotion perception is multi-faceted. It is linked to emotional and cognitive change, to processing biases that benefit young and own-age expressions, and to the different aptitudes of women and men.

  3. Italian validation of the Amsterdam Preoperative Anxiety and Information Scale.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Buonanno, Pasquale; Laiola, Anna; Palumbo, Chiara; Spinelli, Gianmario; Terminiello, Virginia; Servillo, Giuseppe

    2017-07-01

    Preoperative anxiety is usually experienced by patients awaiting surgical procedures and it can negatively impact patient's outcome. The Amsterdam Preoperative Anxiety and Information Scale (APAIS) is a questionnaire created to identify anxious patients and their need for information: it has been translated and validated in many languages because of its reliability and ease of completion. To date, no Italian version of the APAIS has been produced; our aim was to translate and validate the APAIS in Italian. We produced an Italian version of the APAIS and we administered it to 110 patients undergoing elective surgery; we explored its structure by factor analysis and its reliability by Cronbach's alpha. We analyzed its external validity by confronting it to the Spielberg's State-Trait Anxiety Inventory (STAI). Sensitivity, specificity, and positive and negative predictive values of the Italian version of the APAIS were determined. The Italian version of the APAIS confirmed the original structure of the questionnaire and its internal consistency; it well correlated with the STAI-Y1, the subscale of the STAI which explore the anxiety "state." An APAIS score of 14 was found as best cutoff to distinguish anxious and non-anxious patients. The Italian translation of the APAIS showed psychometric properties similar to the original version. Its reliability and its efficiency make it a powerful tool even in Italian population to detect anxiety and need for information.

  4. Operating experience and TPA: the Italian perspective

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Grimaldi, G.

    1990-01-01

    Collection and analysis of operating experience from the Italian plants and utilization of abroad data both to plants in operation and in construction are presented. Some results are also referred, aimed to evidence the role of the international cooperation to safe operation of nuclear plants. The approach to the Trend and Pattern analyses is described as well, and the use of computerized techniques of analysis on personal computer. Finally on going activities are introduced, specifically application of operating experience of plants in operation to small sized reactors and to ones with more intrinsic safety characteristics; review of the reporting system for future application and comparative analysis of the different realization of selected safety systems

  5. Hydrogen fuelled buses: Italian ENEA research program

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ambrosini, G.; Ciancia, A.; Pede, G.

    1993-01-01

    Current hydrogen automotive fuels research studies being conducted by ENEA (Italian Agency for New Technology, Energy and the Environment) are being targeted towards the development of hydrogen fueled vans and buses for use in highly polluted urban environments where the innovative vehicles' air pollution abatement characteristics would justify their high operating costs as compared with those of conventional automotive alternatives. The demonstration vehicle being used in the experimental studies and performance tests is a two liter minibus with a spark ignition engine power rated at 55 kW with gasoline operation and 45 kW with hydrogen. Detailed design notes are given regarding the retrofitting of the minibus chassis to house the aluminium gas storage tanks and the adaptation of the engine to operate with compressed hydrogen. Attention is given to efforts being made to resolve combustion control and fueling problems. Focus is on the progress being made in the development of an efficient and safe electronically controlled fuel injection system

  6. XVth Italian Society of Archaeoastronomy Congress

    CERN Document Server

    2017-01-01

    This book addresses a variety of topics within the growing discipline of Archaeoastronomy, focusing especially on Archaeoastronomy in Sicily and the Mediterranean and Cultural Astronomy. A further priority is discussion of the astronomical and statistical methods used today to ascertain the degree of reliability of the chronological and cultural definition of sites and artifacts of archaeoastronomical interest. The contributions were all delivered at the XVth Congress of the Italian Society of Archaeoastronomy (SIA), held under the rubric "The Light, the Stones and the Sacred" – a theme inspired by the International Year of Light 2015, organized by UNESCO. The full meaning of many ancient monuments can only be understood by examining their relation to light, given the effects that light radiation produces in “interacting” with lithic structures. Moreover, in addition to manifestations of the sacred through the medium of light (hierophanies), there are many ties between temples, tombs, megalithic structu...

  7. Ambient Assisted Living : Italian forum 2013

    CERN Document Server

    Siciliano, Pietro; Germani, Michele; Monteriù, Andrea

    2014-01-01

    This book presents the refereed proceedings of the Fourth Italian Forum on Ambient Assisted Living (AAL), held in Ancona, Italy, in October 2013. A wide range of issues are covered, and new technological developments are described which will support the autonomy and independence of individuals with special needs through an innovative and integrated approach, designed to respond to the socio-economic challenges of an aging population. Topics addressed include: health and well-being, prevention and rehabilitation, and support for care providers; active aging and its social implications; services for the frail elderly with health problems and their families; nutrition; ICT platforms/technologies for the benefit of the elderly; home automation and control technologies (autonomy, safety, and energy saving); smart cities and smart communities; telemedicine, telerehabilitation, and telecare; mobility, participation, and social inclusion; games and fun for the elderly; building design; social housing; interface desig...

  8. Co-creation in Italian Transmedia Production

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Domenico Morreale

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available This essay analyzes the forms of co-creation which have involved the operators in broadcast communication, the new creators of non-institutional content and the users in the context of transmedia production, with a particular focus on the Italian situation. The first part of the essay analyzes and compares the definitions of transmedia in literature, aiming to identify the specific characteristics of communication strategies which identify it and to clarify the differences with the concept of cross-media, which is often used wrongly as a synonym. In the second part of the essay, the main study models of transmedia structures in literature are used in order to analyze some emblematic cases of transmedia co-creation which have experimented some collaborative solutions over the last decade in Italy, leading to the production of contents designed for a distribution on multiple platforms, used in a coordinated and complementary manner.

  9. Multiple tooth resorption in an Italian Greyhound

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Roux, P.; Schawalder, P.; Stich, H.

    2011-01-01

    An Italian greyhound was presented three times during a two-year period for dental prophylaxis due to periodontal disease. Clinical examination revealed lesions on several teeth. Radiographs revealed extensive resorptive root lesions. On histological examination, the presence of odontoclasts and signs of boney remodeling of the roots confirmed the resorptive nature of the lesions. Given the extent of the lesions, and poor prognosis with conservative treatment alone, teeth affected by the most severe resorption were extracted at each visit using a flap technique combined with alveolar vestibular osteotomy. Dental resorptive lesions are rarely detected in the dog but may be more frequent than previously thought. The routine use of dental radiographs can be used to reveal these lesions in the dog

  10. Italian survey on benign paroxysmal positional vertigo.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Messina, A; Casani, A P; Manfrin, M; Guidetti, G

    2017-08-01

    Benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV) is the most common type of peripheral vertigo. BPPV often relapses after the first episode, with a recurrence rate between 15% and 50%. To date both the aetiopathogenetic processes that lead to otoconia detachment and the factors that make BPPV a relapsing disease are still unclear, but recent epidemiological studies have shown a possible association with cardiovascular risk factors. The aim of the present study (Sesto Senso Survey) was to evaluate in the Italian population through an observational survey, the main demographic and clinical characteristics of patients with BPPV (first episode or recurrent) with particular focus on the potential cardiovascular risk factors. The survey was conducted in 158 vestibology centres across Italy on 2,682 patients (mean age 59.3 ± 15.0 years; 39.1% males and 60.9% females) suffering from BPPV, from January 2013 to December 2014. The results showed a high prevalence of cardiovascular risk factors such as high blood pressure (55.8%), hypercholesterolaemia (38.6%) and diabetes (17.7%), as well as a family history of cardiovascular disease (49.4%). A high percentage of patients also had hearing loss (42.9%), tinnitus (41.2%), or both (26.8%). The presence of hypertension, dyslipidaemia and pre-existing cardiovascular comorbidities were significantly related to recurrent BPPV episodes (OR range between 1.84 and 2.31). In addition, the association with diabetes and thyroid/autoimmune disease (OR range between 1.73 and 1.89) was relevant. The survey results confirm the significant association between cardiovascular comorbidities and recurrent BPPV and identify them as a potential important risk factor for recurrence of BPPV in the Italian population, paving the way for the evaluation of new therapeutic strategies in the treatment of this disease. © Copyright by Società Italiana di Otorinolaringologia e Chirurgia Cervico-Facciale, Rome, Italy.

  11. The Italian Registry of Antiphospholipid Antibodies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Finazzi, G

    1997-01-01

    The clinical importance of antiphospholipid antibodies (APA) derives from their association with a syndrome of venous and arterial thrombosis, recurrent fetal loss and thrombocytopenia known as the antiphospholipid syndrome (APS). The Italian Registry of Antiphospholipid Antibodies was set up in 1989 for the purpose of collecting a large number of patients with lupus anticoagulant (LA) or anticardiolipin antibodies (ACA) for clinical studies in order to obtain more information on the clinical features of APS. The Italian Registry has completed two clinical studies and proposed an international trial on the treatment of APS patients. These activities of the Registry are reviewed herein. Additional information has been obtained from pertinent articles and abstracts published in journals covered by the Science Citation Index and Medline. The first study of the Registry was a retrospective analysis of enrolled patients which showed that: a) the prevalence of thrombosis and thrombocytopenia was similar in cases with idiopathic APA or APA secondary to systemic lupus erythematosus, and b) the rate of thrombosis was significantly reduced in patients with severe thrombocytopenia but not in those with only a mild reduction of the platelet count. The second study was a prospective survey of the natural history of the disease, showing that a) previous thrombosis and ACA titer > 40 units were independent predictors of subsequent vascular complications; b) a history of miscarriage or thrombosis is significantly associated with adverse pregnancy outcome; c) hematological malignancies can develop during follow-up and patients with APA should be considered at increased risk of developing NHL. Thus the possibility of a hematologic neoplastic disease should be borne in mind in the initial evaluation and during the follow-up of these patients. The latest initiative of the Registry was the proposal of an international, randomized clinical trial (WAPS study) aimed at assessing the

  12. Birth of a science centre. Italian phenomenology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Paola Rodari

    2006-06-01

    Full Text Available In May 2004 the Balì Museum, Planetarium and interactive science museum, was opened to the public in Italy: 35 hands-on exhibits designed according to the interactive tradition of the Exploratorium in San Francisco, an astronomic observatory for educational activities, a Planetarium with 70 places. With a total investment of about three million euros, about two thirds of which were spent on restructuring the splendid eighteenth-century villa in which it is housed, the undertaking may be considered a small one in comparison with other European science centres. Three million euros: perhaps enough to cover the cost of only the splendid circular access ramp to the brand-new Cosmocaixa in Barcelona, an investment of one hundred million euros. But the interesting aspect of the story of the Balì Museum (but also of other Italian stories, as we shall see lies in the fact that this lively and advanced science centre stands in the bucolic region of the Marches, next to a small town of only 800 inhabitants (Saltara, in the Province of Pesaro and Urbino, in a municipal territory that has a total of 5000. Whereas in Italy the projects for science centres comparable with the Catalan one, for example projects for Rome and Turin, never get off the ground, smaller ones are opening in small and medium-sized towns: why is this? And what does the unusual location of the centres entail for science communication in Italy? This Focus does not claim to tell the whole truth about Italian interactive museums, but it does offer some phenomenological cues to open a debate on the cultural, economic and political premises that favour their lives.

  13. Scenario e ruoli sociali delle Associazioni teatrali non professionistiche italiane

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cinzia Toscano

    2016-07-01

    Full Text Available This paper investigates the present scenario of the non-professional theater associations in Italy so as to understand their current form of organization. The study focuses on the changes that have characterized in time the non-professional associations (due also to the improvement of the legislation regulating the no profit sector and the social role in contemporary local communities. The survey was conducted within the two most relevant Italian associations of non-professional theater: the Italian Federation of non-professional Theatre (Federazione Italiana Teatro Amatori and the Italian Union of Free Theatre (Unione Italiana Libero Teatro.

  14. Bayesian Analysis of Demand Elasticity in the Italian Electricity Market

    OpenAIRE

    D'Errico, Maria; Bollino, Carlo

    2015-01-01

    The liberalization of the Italian electricity market is a decade old. Within these last ten years, the supply side has been extensively analyzed, but not the demand side. The aim of this paper is to provide a new method for estimation of the demand elasticity, based on Bayesian methods applied to the Italian electricity market. We used individual demand bids data in the day-ahead market in the Italian Power Exchange (IPEX), for 2011, in order to construct an aggregate demand function at the h...

  15. Renewable resource power production: Italian decree CIP No. 34

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Di Macco, C.

    1991-01-01

    As part of an overall energy conservation campaign, a concrete step, in the form of a more favourable electricity rate structure for auto-producers, is being taken by the Italian Government to encourage medium sized industries to adopt cogeneration systems to meet their heat and power requirements. Within this context, this paper gives a look at the incentives for renewable energy source use which are incorporated in the CIP (Italian Inter-ministerial Commission on Prices) Provision No. 34/90, regulating industrial plant cogeneration systems, and which governs ENEL's (Italian National Electricity Board) rate structure in the case of independent on-site producers ceding power to the national utility's grid

  16. Wind power: Italian auto-production legislation (ISES convention)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mari, G.

    1991-01-01

    With reference to what was discussed at the Bologna (Italy) June 1991 ISES (International Solar Energy Society) convention on wind energy, this paper summarizes the Italian legislative framework relative to on-site power generation and outlines the National Energy Plan objectives regarding the promotion of the use, by industry, of renewable energy sources. Brief notes are also provided on wind energy promotional activities being carried out by ENEL (the Italian National Energy Board), ENEA (Italian Agency for New Technologies, Energy and the Environment), and EWEA (the European Wind Energy Association)

  17. Speaker information affects false recognition of unstudied lexical-semantic associates.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Luthra, Sahil; Fox, Neal P; Blumstein, Sheila E

    2018-05-01

    Recognition of and memory for a spoken word can be facilitated by a prior presentation of that word spoken by the same talker. However, it is less clear whether this speaker congruency advantage generalizes to facilitate recognition of unheard related words. The present investigation employed a false memory paradigm to examine whether information about a speaker's identity in items heard by listeners could influence the recognition of novel items (critical intruders) phonologically or semantically related to the studied items. In Experiment 1, false recognition of semantically associated critical intruders was sensitive to speaker information, though only when subjects attended to talker identity during encoding. Results from Experiment 2 also provide some evidence that talker information affects the false recognition of critical intruders. Taken together, the present findings indicate that indexical information is able to contact the lexical-semantic network to affect the processing of unheard words.

  18. Incorporating Pass-Phrase Dependent Background Models for Text-Dependent Speaker verification

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sarkar, Achintya Kumar; Tan, Zheng-Hua

    2018-01-01

    -dependent. We show that the proposed method significantly reduces the error rates of text-dependent speaker verification for the non-target types: target-wrong and impostor-wrong while it maintains comparable TD-SV performance when impostors speak a correct utterance with respect to the conventional system......In this paper, we propose pass-phrase dependent background models (PBMs) for text-dependent (TD) speaker verification (SV) to integrate the pass-phrase identification process into the conventional TD-SV system, where a PBM is derived from a text-independent background model through adaptation using...... the utterances of a particular pass-phrase. During training, pass-phrase specific target speaker models are derived from the particular PBM using the training data for the respective target model. While testing, the best PBM is first selected for the test utterance in the maximum likelihood (ML) sense...

  19. Perceptual and acoustic analysis of lexical stress in Greek speakers with dysarthria.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Papakyritsis, Ioannis; Müller, Nicole

    2014-01-01

    The study reported in this paper investigated the abilities of Greek speakers with dysarthria to signal lexical stress at the single word level. Three speakers with dysarthria and two unimpaired control participants were recorded completing a repetition task of a list of words consisting of minimal pairs of Greek disyllabic words contrasted by lexical stress location only. Fourteen listeners were asked to determine the attempted stress location for each word pair. Acoustic analyses of duration and intensity ratios, both within and across words, were undertaken to identify possible acoustic correlates of the listeners' judgments concerning stress location. Acoustic and perceptual data indicate that while each participant with dysarthria in this study had some difficulty in signaling stress unambiguously, the pattern of difficulty was different for each speaker. Further, it was found that the relationship between the listeners' judgments of stress location and the acoustic data was not conclusive.

  20. Speaker-Sex Discrimination for Voiced and Whispered Vowels at Short Durations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, David R R

    2016-01-01

    Whispered vowels, produced with no vocal fold vibration, lack the periodic temporal fine structure which in voiced vowels underlies the perceptual attribute of pitch (a salient auditory cue to speaker sex). Voiced vowels possess no temporal fine structure at very short durations (below two glottal cycles). The prediction was that speaker-sex discrimination performance for whispered and voiced vowels would be similar for very short durations but, as stimulus duration increases, voiced vowel performance would improve relative to whispered vowel performance as pitch information becomes available. This pattern of results was shown for women's but not for men's voices. A whispered vowel needs to have a duration three times longer than a voiced vowel before listeners can reliably tell whether it's spoken by a man or woman (∼30 ms vs. ∼10 ms). Listeners were half as sensitive to information about speaker-sex when it is carried by whispered compared with voiced vowels.

  1. Time-Contrastive Learning Based DNN Bottleneck Features for Text-Dependent Speaker Verification

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sarkar, Achintya Kumar; Tan, Zheng-Hua

    2017-01-01

    In this paper, we present a time-contrastive learning (TCL) based bottleneck (BN) feature extraction method for speech signals with an application to text-dependent (TD) speaker verification (SV). It is well-known that speech signals exhibit quasi-stationary behavior in and only in a short interval......, and the TCL method aims to exploit this temporal structure. More specifically, it trains deep neural networks (DNNs) to discriminate temporal events obtained by uniformly segmenting speech signals, in contrast to existing DNN based BN feature extraction methods that train DNNs using labeled data...... to discriminate speakers or pass-phrases or phones or a combination of them. In the context of speaker verification, speech data of fixed pass-phrases are used for TCL-BN training, while the pass-phrases used for TCL-BN training are excluded from being used for SV, so that the learned features can be considered...

  2. Forensic Automatic Speaker Recognition Based on Likelihood Ratio Using Acoustic-phonetic Features Measured Automatically

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Huapeng Wang

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Forensic speaker recognition is experiencing a remarkable paradigm shift in terms of the evaluation framework and presentation of voice evidence. This paper proposes a new method of forensic automatic speaker recognition using the likelihood ratio framework to quantify the strength of voice evidence. The proposed method uses a reference database to calculate the within- and between-speaker variability. Some acoustic-phonetic features are extracted automatically using the software VoiceSauce. The effectiveness of the approach was tested using two Mandarin databases: A mobile telephone database and a landline database. The experiment's results indicate that these acoustic-phonetic features do have some discriminating potential and are worth trying in discrimination. The automatic acoustic-phonetic features have acceptable discriminative performance and can provide more reliable results in evidence analysis when fused with other kind of voice features.

  3. Language control in different contexts: the behavioural ecology of bilingual speakers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David William Green

    2011-05-01

    Full Text Available This paper proposes that different experimental contexts (single or dual language contexts permit different neural loci at which words in the target language can be selected. However, in order to develop a fuller understanding of the neural circuit mediating language control we need to consider the community context in which bilingual speakers typically use their two languages (the behavioural ecology of bilingual speakers. The contrast between speakers from code-switching and non-code switching communities offers a way to increase our understanding of the cortical, subcortical and, in particular, cerebellar structures involved in language control. It will also help us identify the non-verbal behavioural correlates associated with these control processes.

  4. Speaker transfer in children's peer conversation: completing communication-aid-mediated contributions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clarke, Michael; Bloch, Steven; Wilkinson, Ray

    2013-03-01

    Managing the exchange of speakers from one person to another effectively is a key issue for participants in everyday conversational interaction. Speakers use a range of resources to indicate, in advance, when their turn will come to an end, and listeners attend to such signals in order to know when they might legitimately speak. Using the principles and findings from conversation analysis, this paper examines features of speaker transfer in a conversation between a boy with cerebral palsy who has been provided with a voice-output communication aid (VOCA), and a peer without physical or communication difficulties. Specifically, the analysis focuses on turn exchange, where a VOCA-mediated contribution approach completion, and the child without communication needs is due to speak next.

  5. Infant sensitivity to speaker and language in learning a second label.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bhagwat, Jui; Casasola, Marianella

    2014-02-01

    Two experiments examined when monolingual, English-learning 19-month-old infants learn a second object label. Two experimenters sat together. One labeled a novel object with one novel label, whereas the other labeled the same object with a different label in either the same or a different language. Infants were tested on their comprehension of each label immediately following its presentation. Infants mapped the first label at above chance levels, but they did so with the second label only when requested by the speaker who provided it (Experiment 1) or when the second experimenter labeled the object in a different language (Experiment 2). These results show that 19-month-olds learn second object labels but do not readily generalize them across speakers of the same language. The results highlight how speaker and language spoken guide infants' acceptance of second labels, supporting sociopragmatic views of word learning. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  6. Does dynamic information about the speaker's face contribute to semantic speech processing? ERP evidence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hernández-Gutiérrez, David; Abdel Rahman, Rasha; Martín-Loeches, Manuel; Muñoz, Francisco; Schacht, Annekathrin; Sommer, Werner

    2018-07-01

    Face-to-face interactions characterize communication in social contexts. These situations are typically multimodal, requiring the integration of linguistic auditory input with facial information from the speaker. In particular, eye gaze and visual speech provide the listener with social and linguistic information, respectively. Despite the importance of this context for an ecological study of language, research on audiovisual integration has mainly focused on the phonological level, leaving aside effects on semantic comprehension. Here we used event-related potentials (ERPs) to investigate the influence of facial dynamic information on semantic processing of connected speech. Participants were presented with either a video or a still picture of the speaker, concomitant to auditory sentences. Along three experiments, we manipulated the presence or absence of the speaker's dynamic facial features (mouth and eyes) and compared the amplitudes of the semantic N400 elicited by unexpected words. Contrary to our predictions, the N400 was not modulated by dynamic facial information; therefore, semantic processing seems to be unaffected by the speaker's gaze and visual speech. Even though, during the processing of expected words, dynamic faces elicited a long-lasting late posterior positivity compared to the static condition. This effect was significantly reduced when the mouth of the speaker was covered. Our findings may indicate an increase of attentional processing to richer communicative contexts. The present findings also demonstrate that in natural communicative face-to-face encounters, perceiving the face of a speaker in motion provides supplementary information that is taken into account by the listener, especially when auditory comprehension is non-demanding. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  7. Continuing Medical Education Speakers with High Evaluation Scores Use more Image-based Slides

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ferguson, Ian

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Although continuing medical education (CME presentations are common across health professions, it is unknown whether slide design is independently associated with audience evaluations of the speaker. Based on the conceptual framework of Mayer’s theory of multimedia learning, this study aimed to determine whether image use and text density in presentation slides are associated with overall speaker evaluations. This retrospective analysis of six sequential CME conferences (two annual emergency medicine conferences over a three-year period used a mixed linear regression model to assess whether postconference speaker evaluations were associated with image fraction (percentage of image-based slides per presentation and text density (number of words per slide. A total of 105 unique lectures were given by 49 faculty members, and 1,222 evaluations (70.1% response rate were available for analysis. On average, 47.4% (SD=25.36 of slides had at least one educationally-relevant image (image fraction. Image fraction significantly predicted overall higher evaluation scores [F(1, 100.676=6.158, p=0.015] in the mixed linear regression model. The mean (SD text density was 25.61 (8.14 words/slide but was not a significant predictor [F(1, 86.293=0.55, p=0.815]. Of note, the individual speaker [χ2 (1=2.952, p=0.003] and speaker seniority [F(3, 59.713=4.083, p=0.011] significantly predicted higher scores. This is the first published study to date assessing the linkage between slide design and CME speaker evaluations by an audience of practicing clinicians. The incorporation of images was associated with higher evaluation scores, in alignment with Mayer’s theory of multimedia learning. Contrary to this theory, however, text density showed no significant association, suggesting that these scores may be multifactorial. Professional development efforts should focus on teaching best practices in both slide design and presentation skills.

  8. Neural decoding of attentional selection in multi-speaker environments without access to clean sources

    Science.gov (United States)

    O'Sullivan, James; Chen, Zhuo; Herrero, Jose; McKhann, Guy M.; Sheth, Sameer A.; Mehta, Ashesh D.; Mesgarani, Nima

    2017-10-01

    Objective. People who suffer from hearing impairments can find it difficult to follow a conversation in a multi-speaker environment. Current hearing aids can suppress background noise; however, there is little that can be done to help a user attend to a single conversation amongst many without knowing which speaker the user is attending to. Cognitively controlled hearing aids that use auditory attention decoding (AAD) methods are the next step in offering help. Translating the successes in AAD research to real-world applications poses a number of challenges, including the lack of access to the clean sound sources in the environment with which to compare with the neural signals. We propose a novel framework that combines single-channel speech separation algorithms with AAD. Approach. We present an end-to-end system that (1) receives a single audio channel containing a mixture of speakers that is heard by a listener along with the listener’s neural signals, (2) automatically separates the individual speakers in the mixture, (3) determines the attended speaker, and (4) amplifies the attended speaker’s voice to assist the listener. Main results. Using invasive electrophysiology recordings, we identified the regions of the auditory cortex that contribute to AAD. Given appropriate electrode locations, our system is able to decode the attention of subjects and amplify the attended speaker using only the mixed audio. Our quality assessment of the modified audio demonstrates a significant improvement in both subjective and objective speech quality measures. Significance. Our novel framework for AAD bridges the gap between the most recent advancements in speech processing technologies and speech prosthesis research and moves us closer to the development of cognitively controlled hearable devices for the hearing impaired.

  9. Insight into the Attitudes of Speakers of Urban Meccan Hijazi Arabic towards their Dialect

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sameeha D. Alahmadi

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available The current study mainly aims to examine the attitudes of speakers of Urban Meccan Hijazi Arabic (UMHA towards their dialect, which is spoken in Mecca, Saudi Arabia. It also investigates whether the participants’ age, sex and educational level have any impact on their perception of their dialect. To this end, I designed a 5-point-Likert-scale questionnaire, requiring participants to rate their attitudes towards their dialect. I asked 80 participants, whose first language is UMHA, to fill out the questionnaire. On the basis of the three independent variables, namely, age, sex and educational level, the participants were divided into three groups: old and young speakers, male and female speakers and educated and uneducated speakers. The results reveal that in general, all the groups (young and old, male and female, and educated and uneducated participants have a sense of responsibility towards their dialect, making their attitudes towards their dialect positive. However, differences exist between the three groups. For instance, old speakers tend to express their pride of their dialect more than young speakers. The same pattern is observed in male and female groups. The results show that females may feel embarrassed to provide answers that may imply that they are not proud of their own dialect, since the majority of women in the Arab world, in general, are under more pressure to conform to the overt norms of the society than males. Therefore, I argue that most Arab women may not have the same freedom to express their opinions and feelings about various issues. Based on the results, the study concludes with some recommendations for further research.  Keywords: sociolinguistics, language attitudes, dialectology, social variables, Urban Meccan Hijazi Arabic

  10. Continuing Medical Education Speakers with High Evaluation Scores Use more Image-based Slides.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ferguson, Ian; Phillips, Andrew W; Lin, Michelle

    2017-01-01

    Although continuing medical education (CME) presentations are common across health professions, it is unknown whether slide design is independently associated with audience evaluations of the speaker. Based on the conceptual framework of Mayer's theory of multimedia learning, this study aimed to determine whether image use and text density in presentation slides are associated with overall speaker evaluations. This retrospective analysis of six sequential CME conferences (two annual emergency medicine conferences over a three-year period) used a mixed linear regression model to assess whether post-conference speaker evaluations were associated with image fraction (percentage of image-based slides per presentation) and text density (number of words per slide). A total of 105 unique lectures were given by 49 faculty members, and 1,222 evaluations (70.1% response rate) were available for analysis. On average, 47.4% (SD=25.36) of slides had at least one educationally-relevant image (image fraction). Image fraction significantly predicted overall higher evaluation scores [F(1, 100.676)=6.158, p=0.015] in the mixed linear regression model. The mean (SD) text density was 25.61 (8.14) words/slide but was not a significant predictor [F(1, 86.293)=0.55, p=0.815]. Of note, the individual speaker [χ 2 (1)=2.952, p=0.003] and speaker seniority [F(3, 59.713)=4.083, p=0.011] significantly predicted higher scores. This is the first published study to date assessing the linkage between slide design and CME speaker evaluations by an audience of practicing clinicians. The incorporation of images was associated with higher evaluation scores, in alignment with Mayer's theory of multimedia learning. Contrary to this theory, however, text density showed no significant association, suggesting that these scores may be multifactorial. Professional development efforts should focus on teaching best practices in both slide design and presentation skills.

  11. Are Cantonese-speakers really descriptivists? Revisiting cross-cultural semantics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lam, Barry

    2010-05-01

    In an article in Cognition [Machery, E., Mallon, R., Nichols, S., & Stich, S. (2004). Semantics cross-cultural style. Cognition, 92, B1-B12] present data which purports to show that East Asian Cantonese-speakers tend to have descriptivist intuitions about the referents of proper names, while Western English-speakers tend to have causal-historical intuitions about proper names. Machery et al. take this finding to support the view that some intuitions, the universality of which they claim is central to philosophical theories, vary according to cultural background. Machery et al. conclude from their findings that the philosophical methodology of consulting intuitions about hypothetical cases is flawed vis a vis the goal of determining truths about some philosophical domains like philosophical semantics. In the following study, three new vignettes in English were given to Western native English-speakers, and Cantonese translations were given to native Cantonese-speaking immigrants from a Cantonese community in Southern California. For all three vignettes, questions were given to elicit intuitions about the referent of a proper name and the truth-value of an uttered sentence containing a proper name. The results from this study reveal that East Asian Cantonese-speakers do not differ from Western English-speakers in ways that support Machery et al.'s conclusions. This new data concerning the intuitions of Cantonese-speakers raises questions about whether cross-cultural variation in answers to questions on certain vignettes reveal genuine differences in intuitions, or whether such differences stem from non-intuitional differences, such as differences in linguistic competence. Copyright 2009 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  12. Comparison of daytime and night-time populations adjacent to interstate highways in metropolitan areas

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mills, G.S.; Neuhauser, K.S.

    1999-01-01

    Daytime and night-time population densities bordering Interstate highway routes in metropolitan areas are compared at the traffic analysis zone level. In three of the metropolitan areas studied, histograms of daytime to night-time population density ratios are peaked at 1.0. In a smaller metropolitan area, the peak of the histogram moves to values greater than 1.0 but less than 2.0. In view of the typical uncertainties in calculating radiological transport effects (∼2), this study indicates that a distinction between daytime and night-time transport is not warranted, especially since a typical route includes extensive transport outside metropolitan areas. (author)

  13. A comparison of three speaker-intrinsic vowel formant frequency normalization algorithms for sociophonetics

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Fabricius, Anne; Watt, Dominic; Johnson, Daniel Ezra

    2009-01-01

    from RP and Aberdeen English (northeast Scotland). We conclude that, for the data examined here, the S-centroid W&F procedures performs at least as well as the two most recognized speaker-intrinsic, vowel-extrinsic, formant-intrinsic normalization methods, Lobanov's (1971) z-score procedure and Nearey......This paper evaluates a speaker-intrinsic vowel formant frequency normalization algorithm initially proposed in Watt & Fabricius (2002). We compare how well this routine, known as the S-centroid procedure, performs as a sociophonetic research tool in three ways: reducing variance in area ratios...

  14. Gender parity trends for invited speakers at four prominent virology conference series.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kalejta, Robert F; Palmenberg, Ann C

    2017-06-07

    Scientific conferences are most beneficial to participants when they showcase significant new experimental developments, accurately summarize the current state of the field, and provide strong opportunities for collaborative networking. A top-notch slate of invited speakers, assembled by conference organizers or committees, is key to achieving these goals. The perceived underrepresentation of female speakers at prominent scientific meetings is currently a popular topic for discussion, but one that often lacks supportive data. We compiled the full rosters of invited speakers over the last 35 years for four prominent international virology conferences, the American Society for Virology Annual Meeting (ASV), the International Herpesvirus Workshop (IHW), the Positive-Strand RNA Virus Symposium (PSR), and the Gordon Research Conference on Viruses & Cells (GRC). The rosters were cross-indexed by unique names, gender, year, and repeat invitations. When plotted as gender-dependent trends over time, all four conferences showed a clear proclivity for male-dominated invited speaker lists. Encouragingly, shifts toward parity are emerging within all units, but at different rates. Not surprisingly, both selection of a larger percentage of first time participants and the presence of a woman on the speaker selection committee correlated with improved parity. Session chair information was also collected for the IHW and GRC. These visible positions also displayed a strong male dominance over time that is eroding slowly. We offer our personal interpretation of these data to aid future organizers achieve improved equity among the limited number of available positions for session moderators and invited speakers. IMPORTANCE Politicians and media members have a tendency to cite anecdotes as conclusions without any supporting data. This happens so frequently now, that a name for it has emerged: fake news. Good science proceeds otherwise. The under representation of women as invited

  15. Multi-Frame Rate Based Multiple-Model Training for Robust Speaker Identification of Disguised Voice

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Prasad, Swati; Tan, Zheng-Hua; Prasad, Ramjee

    2013-01-01

    Speaker identification systems are prone to attack when voice disguise is adopted by the user. To address this issue,our paper studies the effect of using different frame rates on the accuracy of the speaker identification system for disguised voice.In addition, a multi-frame rate based multiple......-model training method is proposed. The experimental results show the superior performance of the proposed method compared to the commonly used single frame rate method for three types of disguised voice taken from the CHAINS corpus....

  16. Improving the Effectiveness of Speaker Verification Domain Adaptation With Inadequate In-Domain Data

    Science.gov (United States)

    2017-08-20

    M speakers. We seek a probabilistic solution to domain adap- tation, and so we encode knowledge of the out-of-domain data in prior distributions...the VB solution from (16)-(21) becomes: µ =αȳ + (1− α)µout, (24) Σa =α ( 1 NT NT∑ n=1 〈ynyTn 〉 − ȳȳT ) + (1− α) Σouta (25) + α (1− α) ( ȳ − µout...non- English languages and from unseen channels. An inadequate in-domain set was provided, which consisted of 2272 samples from 1164 speakers, and

  17. Heterogeneous Structure and Seismicity beneath the Tokyo Metropolitan Area

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nakagawa, S.; Kato, A.; Sakai, S.; Nanjo, K.; Panayotopoulos, Y.; Kurashimo, E.; Obara, K.; Kasahara, K.; Aketagawa, T.; Kimura, H.; Hirata, N.

    2010-12-01

    Beneath the Tokyo metropolitan area, the Philippine Sea Plate (PSP) subducts and causes damaged mega-thrust earthquakes. Sato et al. (2005) revealed the geometry of upper surface of PSP, and Hagiwara et al. (2006) estimated the velocity structure beneath Boso peninsula. However, these results are not sufficient for the assessment of the entire picture of the seismic hazards beneath the Tokyo metropolitan area including those due to an intra-slab M7+ earthquake. So, we launched the Special Project for Earthquake Disaster Mitigation in the Tokyo Metropolitan area (Hirata et al., 2009). Proving the more detailed geometry and physical properties (e.g. velocities, densities, attenuation) and stress field within PSP is very important to attain this issue. The core item of this project is a dense seismic array called Metropolitan Seismic Observation network (MeSO-net) for making observations in the metropolitan area (Sakai and Hirata, 2009; Kasahara et al., 2009). We deployed the 249 seismic stations with a spacing of 5 km. Some parts of stations construct 5 linear arrays at interval of 2 km such as Tsukuba-Fujisawa (TF) array, etc. The TF array runs from northeast to southwest through the center of Tokyo. In this study, we applied the tomography method to image the heterogeneous structure under the Tokyo metropolitan area. We selected events from the Japan Meteorological Agency (JMA) unified earthquake list. All data of MeSO-net were edited into event data by the selected JMA unified earthquake list. We picked the P and S wave arrival times. The total number of stations and events are 421 and 1,256, respectively. Then, we applied the double-difference tomography method (Zhang and Thurber, 2003) to this dataset and estimated the fine-scale velocity structure. The grid nodes locate 10 km interval in parallel with the array, 20 km interval in perpendicular to the array; and on depth direction, 5 km interval to a depth of less than 50 km and 10 km interval at a depth of more

  18. Top Soils Geochemical and Radioactivity Survey of Naples (Italy) Metropolitan.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Somma, R.; De Vivo, B.; Cicchella, D.

    2001-05-01

    The metropolitan area of Naples due to intense human activities is an emblematic area affected by various environmental pollution of soils and waters in addition to hydrogeological volcanic, seismic and bradyseismic hazards. The geology of the area is prevailing represented by volcanics erupted, from the Upper Pleistocene to Recent by Mt. Somma-Vesuvius on the east and the Campi Flegrei fields on the west. The morphology of the metropolitan area of Naples city can be subdivided in flat areas, constituted by reworked pyroclastic terrains, and by hills originated by the overlapping of different welded pyroclastic flows (i.e.: Campanian Ignimbrite and Neapoletan Yellow Tuff) intercalated with pyroclastic deposits of different origins (i.e.: Campi Flegrei, Mt. Somma-Vesuvius, Ischia) and ages. In order to compile a multi-element baseline geochemical and radioactivity mapping of the metropolitan area of the Napoli we have sampled for this study, in situ top soil and imported filling material (mainly soil, volcanic ash, pumice and scoriae). The sampling and radioactivity survey has been carried out on about 200 sampling sites covering an area of about 150 Km2, with a grid of 0.5 x 0.5 km in the urbanised downtown and 1 km x 1 km in the sub urban areas. In each site has been determined a radioactivity by a Scintrex GRS-500 at different emission spectra as total radioactivity (> 0.08 MeV and > 0.40 MeV), 238U (at 1.76 MeV mostly from 214Bi), 232Th (at 2.6 MeV mostly from 208Tl) and 40K (at 1.46 MeV mostly for 40K). The range of values of in situ soils are as follow for the in situ soils (Total radioactivity: 1327- 360 and 114- 47; 238U: 2.6- 1.3; 40K: 8.1- 3.1; 232U: 0.5- 0.1). Analyses of major, metallic elements and pH of each soil sample are in progress, while Pb isotopes compositions, for a selected number of samples, will be determined to discriminate the natural (geogenic) from the anthropogenic components in the soils by versus the anthropogenetic origin. The data

  19. Urban heat island effect on cicada densities in metropolitan Seoul

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hoa Q. Nguyen

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Background Urban heat island (UHI effect, the ubiquitous consequence of urbanization, is considered to play a major role in population expansion of numerous insects. Cryptotympana atrata and Hyalessa fuscata are the most abundant cicada species in the Korean Peninsula, where their population densities are higher in urban than in rural areas. We predicted a positive relationship between the UHI intensities and population densities of these two cicada species in metropolitan Seoul. Methods To test this prediction, enumeration surveys of cicada exuviae densities were conducted in 36 localities located within and in the vicinity of metropolitan Seoul. Samples were collected in two consecutive periods from July to August 2015. The abundance of each species was estimated by two resource-weighted densities, one based on the total geographic area, and the other on the total number of trees. Multiple linear regression analyses were performed to identify factors critical for the prevalence of cicada species in the urban habitat. Results C. atrata and H. fuscata were major constituents of cicada species composition collected across all localities. Minimum temperature and sampling period were significant factors contributing to the variation in densities of both species, whereas other environmental factors related to urbanization were not significant. More cicada exuviae were collected in the second rather than in the first samplings, which matched the phenological pattern of cicadas in metropolitan Seoul. Cicada population densities increased measurably with the increase in temperature. Age of residential complex also exhibited a significantly positive correlation to H. fuscata densities, but not to C. atrata densities. Discussion Effects of temperature on cicada densities have been discerned from other environmental factors, as cicada densities increased measurably in tandem with elevated temperature. Several mechanisms may contribute to the abundance of

  20. Population deconcentration in metropolitan Manila in the twentieth century.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stinner, W F; Bacol-montilla, M

    1981-10-01

    "The present analysis is intended to delineate the extent of population deconcentration through an examination of changes in core-periphery growth and density patterns within the Metropolitan Manila complex. Specifically, [the authors] examine changes in absolute and relative population growth and density levels in the central city of Manila, the inner suburban ring, and the outer suburban ring from 1903 to 1975. [The authors] also present a preliminary assessment of the demographic processes underlying the post-World War II trends." Data are from the 1975 Philippine census. excerpt