Towards Affordable Disclosure of Spoken Word Archives

by Roeland Ordelman, Willemijn Heeren, Marijn Huijbregts, Djoerd Hiemstra, and Franciska de Jong

This paper presents and discusses ongoing work aiming at affordable disclosure of real-world spoken word archives in general, and in particular of a collection of recorded interviews with Dutch survivors of World War II concentration camp Buchenwald. Given such collections, the least we want to be able to provide is search at different levels and a flexible way of presenting results. Strategies for automatic annotation based on speech recognition – supporting e.g., within-document search– are outlined and discussed with respect to the Buchenwald interview collection. In addition, usability aspects of the spoken word search are discussed on the basis of our experiences with the online Buchenwald web portal. It is concluded that, although user feedback is generally fairly positive, automatic annotation performance is still far from satisfactory, and requires additional research.

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