Solution for November 2004

Well, nobody mentioned that I didn't change the header last month to read "Solution for October 2004", but I assume people have been paying attention (Sara, Grant... ;-). Thanks for the feedback. Now on to the spectrogram.

"Several awards were given out."

Lower-Case S
[s], IPA 132
Well, this is sort of weak, but you can see the fricative, starting about about 100 msec and going on to almost 250 msec. It's broad band (rather than organized into narrower formant-like organization), and concentrated in the very high frequencies. Toward the beginning, where the overall amplitude is much less, the frequencies we can see are very high. So this is a pretty typical sibilant, almost definitely [s].

[ɛ], IPA 303
So the vowel starts just before 250 msec and goes on for about 100 msec. The F1 is a little low of mid, suggeting a slightly higher mid vowel, which is weird for me if this is [ɛ]. But anyway, this vowel looks quite central, and so this looks very schwa-like. But judging from the amplitude it must be stressed, and if it's stressed, this can't be my [ʌ], which is typically low. So this is probably mid or high, and otherwise non-descript. Oh well. The falling formants are clearly transitional, since they mostly all do it, so they don't help. Not long and not tense.

Lower-Case V
[&#x;], IPA 129
Well, it's very weak, but there's frication throughout this gap up to 400 msec. There's also voicing, so this is either a very weak voiced stop or a weak voiced fricative. The transitions in and out all suggest bilabial (although the F3 doesn't help--more later), so, since bilabial fricatives are not an option, as this is my English, labiodental is not a stretch.

Turned R
[ɹ], IPA 151
So there's that F3, clearly transitioning way down in the previous vowel, and there it is here, down at about 1600 Hz or so. So this must be an /r/ of some kind. Nuff said, I guess.

[ə], IPA 322
Transcribing this as a vowel is merely a convenience. There seems to be 'something' between the /r/ and the following segment, but exactly what is open to interpretation.

Tilde L (Dark L)
[ɫ], IPA 209
So from about 475 to 550 msec or so, there's a dip in amplitude, accompanied by an apparent zero in F2, and a relatively high F3. Very high considering the previous /r/. I'm not quite sure what's going on in F2, but the raised F3 is usually a good indicator of the lateral. And the F2, if it's anywyere, is down there below 1000 Hz, so it must be dark.

Barred I
[ɨ], IPA 317
Again, this is a bit of vowel. I made a mistake transcribing it as barred-i--I think I must have misread the F3 as an F2, but that's idiotic, since even the highest F2 can't get up that high. But it's a transitional vowel more than anything else. So there.

Lower Case W
[w], IPA 170
So here's another attenuated, presumably consonantal articulation, but fully and clearly voiced. So this is almost undoubtedly a sonorant, but very, very close. The low F2 is consistent only with something very round and very back, and the following F2 transition is typical of [w], so there you go.

Open O + Rhoticity Sign
[ɔ˞], IPA 306 + 419
Again, a transcriptional convenience more than anything else. I needed something mid and fairly round. This might be better as an [o], but whatever. The /r/ colo(u)ring is fairly clear, with that low F3 again, but the vowel is again mostly transitional. To the degree that it F1 indicates something mid and the F2 indicates something mostly back, take your pick.

Turned R
[ɹ], IPA 151
Well, here's another /r/. Low F3, though not as low as previously. I've been noticing that the bandwidths of initial /r/s being very narrow, but that may just be me doing stuff to do that. Anyway, thsi looks like a typical /r/ in coda position, with the higher (closer to F3) F2 than in other positions.

Lower-Case D
[c], IPA 104
Gap. Probalby a plosive of some kind. Very voiced, which is interesting. There seems to be a folling F4 (or something), But the F3, if anything, has a rising transition into this gap. But then it would be, since it' starts so low. The F2 is ambiguous to say the least. SO on the balance, I think the alveolar guess is just a default thing. The release is even weak, so it's not clear if that fricative coming up is just release (which would tell us a lot about the place of this plosive) or if it's a fricative.

Lower-Case Z
[z], IPA 133
Well, if there's a fricative, it must be a sibilant. Look at that frequency. And it must be alveolar. Same reason. And voiced.

Lower Case W + Rhoticity Sign
[w˞], IPA 170 + 419
I went nuts with the rhoticity this time, I guess. There's some labial shaping to the tail of the fricative, which is the only decent indication of anything other than just the /r/. If you missed it, I don't blame you. There's some weird overlap of the fricative and the following /r/, but the only thing I latched onto was the attenuation of the voicing before the F3 minimum coming up. The rhoticity sign is is just because the F3 is so low.

Turned R + Syllabicity Mark
[ɹ̩], IPA 151 + 431
Okay, well, there's clearly something we want to call a vowel here, and it's got the typical low F3, hence the syllabic /r/ transcription.

Lower-Case G
[g], IPA 110
Well, there's another gap here, with voicing. Nice loud, but noisy release. Transitions in and out have F2 and F3 close together, so velar is probably the best guess. Transitioning from back to front velar is apparent from the frequency of the 'pinch' on either side.

Small Capital I
[ɪ], IPA 319
So if it ends up as afrotn velar, this vowel must be front vowel. ANd it is. Quite front, at least at the beginning. And quite high, judging from the low F1. The F2 transitions down in a way that I'd expect an [i] to have more of a steady state or trend upward, at least until it starts to transition into a following consonat. So this is probably lax/short/whatever you want to call it.

Script V
[ʋ], IPA 150
Well, this looks short, and vaguely flap-like, being a short, fully voiced 'gap' looking thing. But while the amplitude attenuation is appropriate for a flap, the sonorousness is not. The formants may dip away, but the don't 'stop' the way the would/might ina proper flap. Then there are thte transitions. All falling. So this looks (bi)labial again. Not really a good fricative like the previous one, but an approximant-y looking fricative. And again probably labiodental over bilabial, just because this is English.

[ə], IPA 322
Okay, now this looks like a schwa. Formants at 500, 1500, 2500 and--well, short of 3500, but what the heck.

Lower-Case N
[n], IPA 116
Another segment that has roughly the duration of a flap, although it might be just a tad long. And considering the length, it's fully sonorant (with resonances), so probably not a tap. The attenuation therefore is probably close articulation, and the discontinuity in the frequency/bandwidth of the formants, not to mention the apparent zero below "F2" suggest a nasal. No evidence of velar pinch or a single F2/F3 range pole, and the pole is up around 1500 Hz, too high to be my bilabial. One one choice left.

Lower-Case A + Upsilon
[aʊ], IPA 304 + 321
Well, abstracting away from the first 50 msec or so, the F1 here is fairly high, indicating a fairly low vowel. The F2 starts in the central range, and goes down, indicating increasing rounding and/or backing. So this is probably a diphthong [aʊ]. I wish I could see hte F1 dropping a little, to suggest going from low-to-high, vowel height-wise, but whatever. I don't regard /aO/ a likely diphthong in this case.

Lower-Case T + Right Superscript H
[tʰ], IPA 103 + 404
Well, I probalby should have marked some preglottalization on the previous vowel, but I guess I just read it as low pitch when I was doing the transcribing. But looking at it now, it looks creaky, sort of. Anyway, without the release, it would be hard to tell anything was going on here. But the release at about 1800 msec, is clearly alveolar-looking. Sharp and abrupt, broad band, followed by something that looks very sibilant. Typical of alveolar plosion noise. Especially if you're used to seeing my voice in these things.