Open Access Te Herenga Waka-Victoria University of Wellington
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SpEx: A Tool for Visualising and Navigating Speech Audio

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posted on 2021-11-13, 21:40 authored by Abdulhamid, Fahmi

Audio is a ubiquitous form of information that is usually treated as a single, unbreakable, piece of content. Thus, audio interfaces remain simple, usually consisting of play, pause, forward, and rewind controls. Spoken audio can contain useful information across multiple topics and finding the information desired is usually time consuming. Most audio players simply do not reveal the content of the audio. By using the speech transcript and acoustic qualities of the audio, I have developed a tool, SpEx, which enabled search and navigation within spoken audio. SpEx displayed audio as discrete segments and revealed the topic content of each segment using mature Information Visualisation techniques. Audio segments were produced based on the acoustic and sentence properties of speech to identify topically and aurally distinct regions. A user study found that SpEx allowed users to find information in spoken audio quickly and reliably. By making spoken audio more accessible, people can gain access to a wider range of information.


Copyright Date


Date of Award



Te Herenga Waka—Victoria University of Wellington

Rights License

Author Retains Copyright

Degree Discipline

Software Engineering

Degree Grantor

Te Herenga Waka—Victoria University of Wellington

Degree Level


Degree Name

Master of Engineering

ANZSRC Type Of Activity code

890202 Application Tools and System Utilities

Victoria University of Wellington Item Type

Awarded Research Masters Thesis



Victoria University of Wellington School

School of Engineering and Computer Science


Marshall, Stuart