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Two sentences, read by all speakers, were designed to bring out dialect variation: The remaining sentences were chosen to be phonetically rich, involving all phones (sounds) and a comprehensive range of diphones (phone bigrams).Additionally, the design strikes a balance between multiple speakers saying the same sentence in order to permit comparison across speakers, and having a large range of sentences covered by the corpus to get maximal coverage of diphones.Moreover, even at a given level there may be different labeling schemes or even disagreement amongst annotators, such that we want to represent multiple versions.A second property of TIMIT is its balance across multiple dimensions of variation, for coverage of dialect regions and diphones.
Therefore, many of the computational methods described in this book are applicable.
TIMIT was developed by a consortium including Texas Instruments and MIT, from which it derives its name.
It was designed to provide data for the acquisition of acoustic-phonetic knowledge and to support the development and evaluation of automatic speech recognition systems.
These are organized into a tree structure, shown schematically in 1.2.
At the top level there is a split between training and testing sets, which gives away its intended use for developing and evaluating statistical models.: Structure of the Published TIMIT Corpus: The CD-ROM contains doc, train, and test directories at the top level; the train and test directories both have 8 sub-directories, one per dialect region; each of these contains further subdirectories, one per speaker; the contents of the directory for female speaker A fourth feature of TIMIT is the hierarchical structure of the corpus.