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Mathematical Models of Spoken Language

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Humans use language to convey meaningful messages to each other. Linguistic competence consists in the ability to express meaning reliably, not simply to obtain faithful lexical transcriptions. This invaluable reference tool is the product of many years' experience and research on language and speech technology. It presents the motivations for, intuitions behind and basic mathematical models of natural spoken language communication. From a preliminary discussion on the physics of speech production and the taxonomy of linguistic structure, there is a natural progression taking in issues of grammatical inference, automatic speech recognition and constructive theories of language. The author counterbalances theoretical explanations and illustrations with questions of a more philosophical nature designed to highlight the seemingly limitless future potential of speech technology.
  • Emphasizes the physics of speech production in an argument underpinned by mathematical models of linguistic structure.
  • Collates the formalisms and perspectives used by linguists and engineers and examines established theories, including the Markov process, the Chomsky hierarchy, the Miller-Nicely experiments and Baum and Baker’s experiments.
  • Contains strong sections on the current status and evolution of Artificial Intelligence, the problem of consciousness and future prospects for a science of the mind.
  • Illustrates all points throughout using detailed real world examples.
This comprehensive resource will appeal to researchers and practitioners in the fields of mathematical linguistics and speech technology as well as those in the related disciplines of psychology, artificial intelligence, automata theory, information theory and philosophy.
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