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  One would expect a simple system with no modifications to correctly identify the speaker 50% of the time. In other words, the system would either answer yes or no and be correct in half of all occurrences.

With the addition of speech characteristic recognition like pitch and magnitude, one would hope:

  • Acceptance of the speaker with password rises above 50%
  • Acceptance of intruders (with or without password) falls below 50%.

To test the system, the four members of the group (JP, Sara, Nipul, Aamir) were set as keys during runs for the system. The basic results are as follows:

JP Aamir Nipul Sara
Self with Password 60% (3/5) 80% (4/5) 60% (3/5) 60% (3/5)
Intruder with Password 8% (3/38) 24% (9/38) 21% (9/38) 21% (8/38)
Intruder without Password 0% (0/32) 0% (0/32) 0% (0/32) 0% (0/32)

Clearly, the use of pitch and magnitude has increased accuracy of the system. However, the system is not perfect. In fact, one must wonder what results in false matches for intruders with the password. The following data sheds some light:

JP Aamir Nipul Sara
Number of Intruders 3 9 9 8
Male 100% (3) 77% (7) 89% (8) 12% (1)
Female 0% (0) 22% (2) 11% (1) 88% (7)

As expected, females were more likely to match Sara and males were more likely to match JP, Nipul, and Aamir.

Also noteworthy is the identity of the intruder in each person's case. A person with multiple intrusions may have characteristics that correlate well with a key.

  • Sara - matched twice with both mm and aw
  • Aamir - matched four times with JP
  • Nipul - matched three times with Aamir, four times with JP

This correspondence does indicate that similarities in projection of the word could create verification problems.

On a side note, a sociological theory from Nipul gains credence with this data. The multiple matches mentioned above happen to be the roommates of the members of the group. Amazingly, Nipul's theory of vocal absorption states:

"Persons living with other persons gain the latter's vocal characteristics in an exponential relationship that asymptotically approaches k, the annoyance factor, as t approaches infinity."

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FUTILITY - "You'll always miss 100% of the shots you don't take, and statistically speaking, 99% of the shots you do."
© 1999
Sara MacAlpine
JP Slavinsky
Nipul Bharani
Aamir Virani