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We address the classical problem of delta feature computation, and interpret the operation involved in terms of Savitzky-Golay (SG) filtering. Features such as the mel-frequency cepstral coefficients (MFCCs), obtained based on short-time spectra of the speech signal, are commonly used in speech recognition tasks. In order to incorporate the dynamics of speech, auxiliary delta and delta-delta features, which are computed as temporal derivatives of the original features, are used. Typically, the delta features are computed in a smooth fashion using local least-squares (LS) polynomial fitting on each feature vector component trajectory. In the light of the original work of Savitzky and Golay, and a recent article by Schafer in IEEE Signal Processing Magazine, we interpret the dynamic feature vector computation for arbitrary derivative orders as SG filtering with a fixed impulse response. This filtering equivalence brings in significantly lower latency with no loss in accuracy, as validated by results on a TIMIT phoneme recognition task. The SG filters involved in dynamic parameter computation can be viewed as modulation filters, proposed by Hermansky.
Date of Publication: March 2013