16th Annual Conference of the International Speech Communication Association

Dresden, Germany
September 6-10, 2015

Discriminative Template Learning in Group-Convolutional Networks for Invariant Speech Representations

Chiyuan Zhang, Stephen Voinea, Georgios Evangelopoulos, Lorenzo Rosasco, Tomaso Poggio


In the framework of a theory for invariant sensory signal representations, a signature which is invariant and selective for speech sounds can be obtained through projections in template signals and pooling over their transformations under a group. For locally compact groups, e.g., translations, the theory explains the resilience of convolutional neural networks with filter weight sharing and max pooling across their local translations in frequency or time. In this paper we propose a discriminative approach for learning an optimum set of templates, under a family of transformations, namely frequency transpositions and perturbations of the vocal tract length, which are among the primary sources of speech variability. Implicitly, we generalize convolutional networks to transformations other than translations, and derive data-specific templates by training a deep network with convolution-pooling layers and densely connected layers. We demonstrate that such a representation, combining group-generalized convolutions, theoretical invariance guarantees and discriminative template selection, improves frame classification performance over standard translation-CNNs and DNNs on TIMIT and Wall Street Journal datasets.

Full Paper

Bibliographic reference.  Zhang, Chiyuan / Voinea, Stephen / Evangelopoulos, Georgios / Rosasco, Lorenzo / Poggio, Tomaso (2015): "Discriminative template learning in group-convolutional networks for invariant speech representations", In INTERSPEECH-2015, 3229-3233.