Neighbour selection and adaptation for rapid speaker-dependent ASR
Speaker dependent (SD) ASR systems have significantly lower word error rates (WER) compared to speaker independent (SI) systems. However, SD systems require sufficient training data from the target speaker, which is impractical to collect in a short time. We present a technique for training SD models using just few minutes of speaker's data. We compensate for the lack of adequate speaker-specific data by selecting neighbours from a database of existing speakers who are acoustically close to the target speaker. These neighbours provide ample training data, which is used to adapt the SI model to obtain an initial SD model for the new speaker with significantly lower WER. We evaluate various neighbour selection algorithms on a large-scale medical transcription task and report significant reduction in WER using only 5 mins of speaker-specific data. We conduct a detailed analysis of various factors such as gender and accent in the neighbour selection. Finally, we study neighbour selection and adaptation in the context of discriminative objective functions.