Virtual machines and containers as a platform for experimentation

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Copyright © 2016 ISCA. Research on computational speech processing has traditionally relied on the availability of a relatively large and complex infrastructure, which encompasses data (text and audio), tools (feature extraction, model training, scoring, possibly on-line and off-line, etc.), glue code, and computing. Traditionally, it has been very hard to move experiments from one site to another, and to replicate experiments. With the increasing availability of shared platforms such as commercial cloud computing platforms or publicly funded super-computing centers, there is a need and an opportunity to abstract the experimental environment from the hardware, and distribute complete setups as a virtual machine, a container, or some other shareable resource, that can be deployed and worked with anywhere. In this paper, we discuss our experience with this concept and present some tools that the community might find useful. We outline, as a case study, how such tools can be applied to a naturalistic language acquisition audio corpus.






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Elika Bergelson

Associate Research Professor of Psychology and Neuroscience

Dr. Bergelson accepts PhD applicants through the Developmental and Cog/CogNeuro areas of P&N and the CNAP program.

In my research, I try to understand the interplay of processes during language acquisition.
In particular, I am interested in how word learning relates to other aspects of learning language (e.g. speech sound acquisition, grammar/morphology learning), and social/cognitive development more broadly (e.g. joint attention processes) in the first few years of life.

I pursue these questions using three main approaches: in-lab measures of early comprehension and production (eye-tracking, looking-time, and in EEG studies in collaboration with the Woldorff lab), and at-home measures of infants' linguistic and social environment (as in the SEEDLingS project).

More recently the lab is branching out to look at a wider range of human populations and at infants who are blind or deaf/heard of hearing.

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