Prof. Edward Nęcka, a cognitive psychologist from the Jagiellonian University and Vice-President of the Polish Academy of Sciences, talks about cognitive misers, memory traps, and confusion in a myriad of new technologies.
The process of cognitive aging in global sense can be characterised by changes of the fluid and crystallised intelligence. In the context of this explanation the basic question is which cognitive functions and regulatory mechanisms play the basic role of the determinants for cognitive aging. Probable, mechanism of associative memory play a central role in top-down direction of cognitive processing. This type of memory connect the resources/networks of long term memory with the current processing in working memory. Another set of mechanisms concerns with bottom-up direction based on procedural memory, which is fundamental for the functioning of the mind as whole (Tulving theory,1985). Unfortunately, our knowledge about associative memory and its relations to working and procedural memory is incomplete and unclear. The importance of associative memory are partly, empirically supported by classic research on decreasing the cognitive components of intelligence aging, since the fluid and crystallized intelligence where discovered (Horn, Cattell, 1967). Changes of the mind functioning and its cognitive growth/aging can be characterised as a complex chain from primary, biologically determined mind, through Piagetian and Vygotsky’s type of mind to relatively balanced mind.
Acoustic parameters were analysed in nine auditoria and multi-purpose conference rooms in the University of Extremadura. Parameters related to the reverberation time, background noise, and intelligibility (both physical measurements of different parameters [Definition (D-50) and STI] and speech tests used to study the subjective response of listeners) were studied. The measurements were compared with some recommendations from the literature and, considering that speech was the main use of the studied rooms, with the intelligibility results. Some different recommendations for reverberation times taken from the literature were analysed. The intelligibility results obtained from the measurements were also compared with the intelligibility results that were determined by the speech tests.
To determine speech intelligibility using the test suggested by Ozimek et al. (2009), the subject composed sentences with the words presented on a computer screen. However, the number and the type of these words were chosen arbitrarily. The subject was always presented with 18, similarly sounding words. Therefore, the aim of this study was to determine whether the number and the type of alternative words used by Ozimek et al. (2009), had a significant influence on the speech intelligibility. The aim was also to determine an optimal number of alternative words: i.e., the number that did not affect the speech reception threshold (SRT) and not unduly lengthened the duration of the test. The study conducted using a group of 10 subjects with normal hearing showed that an increase in the number of words to choose from 12 to 30 increased the speech intelligibility by about 0.3 dB/6 words. The use of paronyms as alternative words as opposed to random words, leads to an increase in the speech intelligibility by about 0.6 dB, which is equivalent to a decrease in intelligibility by 15 percentage points. Enlarging the number of words to choose from, and switching alternative words to paronyms, led to an increase in response time from approximately 11 to 16 s. It seems that the use of paronyms as alternative words as well as using 12 or 18 words to choose from is the best choice when using the Polish Sentence Test (PST).
The author analyses problems of disease, dying, and death addressed in a play by Margaret Edson entitled Wit. Special attention is paid to the structure of meta-theatre and the function of wit in the play. The author investigates limitations of reason in the approach adopted by the doctors who take care of Vivian Bearing, and who subject her to an excruciating experiment in order to achieve a potential research success. She also discusses the protagonist’s attitude to literary works, dealing with her own disease, to other people and to God. This offers an opportunity to ruminate on the exact meaning of irretrievable loss involved in suffering. She also concentrates on the attitude of the nurse who – thanks to her emotional intelligence and empathy – accompanies Vivian on her way to death.
The church of Santa Cruz de Oleiros, Spain (1967) shows architect Miguel Fisac’s perception of sacred space after the Second Vatican Council. In this place of worship, the architect responded to the new liturgical guidelines combining geometry and architectural forms with the material of the moment, concrete. However, ordinary religious celebrations reveal acoustic deficiencies for the main use of the building. This fact is corroborated by acoustic measurements in situ. With a methodology that uses simulation techniques for the sound field, the analysis of the current acoustic behaviour of the room will serve as the basis for an acoustic rehabilitation proposal aimed at improving the acoustic conditions and so, the functionality of the church.
This study sought to evaluate the effect of speech intensity on performance of the Callsign Acquisition Test (CAT) and Modified Rhyme Test (MRT) presented in noise. Fourteen normally hearing listeners performed both tests in 65 dB A white background noise. Speech intensity varied while background noise remained constant to form speech-to-noise ratios (SNRs) of -18, -15, -12, -9, and -6 dB. Results showed that CAT recognition scores were significantly higher than MRT scores at the same SNRs; however, the scores from both tests were highly correlated and their relationship for the SNRs tested can be expressed by a simple linear function. The concept of CAT can be easily ported to other languages for testing speech communication under adverse listening conditions.
The paper presents the results of sentence and logatome speech intelligibility measured in rooms with induction loop for hearing aid users. Two rooms with different acoustic parameters were chosen. Twenty two subjects with mild, moderate and severe hearing impairment using hearing aids took part in the experiment. The intelligibility tests composed of sentences or logatomes were presented to the subjects at fixed measurement points of an enclosure. It was shown that a sentence test is more useful tool for speech intelligibility measurements in a room than logatome test. It was also shown that induction loop is very efficient system at improving speech intelligibility. Additionally, the questionnaire data showed that induction loop, apart from improving speech intelligibility, increased a subject’s general satisfaction with speech perception
The aim of the present study was to explore the role of temporal intelligence in English as a Foreign Language (EFL) learners’ self-regulation and self-efficacy. To this end, a general temporal intelligence (GTI-S) scale was designed based on the subconstructs of time in the literature. The scale, along with the learning self-regulation questionnaire (SRQ-L) and the English self-efficacy scale was administered to 520 EFL learners. To validate the GTI-S, confirmatory factor analysis (CFA) was run. The results of Pearson product-moment correlations demonstrated significantly positive relationships between temporal intelligence and controlled self-regulation, automatic self-regulation and self-efficacy (p<.05). Moreover, the findings of multiple regressions revealed that Linearity of Time, Economicity of Time, and Multitasking are the most important subconstructs of time with relation to these variables.
Speech enhancement is fundamental for various real time speech applications and it is a challenging task in the case of a single channel because practically only one data channel is available. We have proposed a supervised single channel speech enhancement algorithm in this paper based on a deep neural network (DNN) and less aggressive Wiener filtering as additional DNN layer. During the training stage the network learns and predicts the magnitude spectrums of the clean and noise signals from input noisy speech acoustic features. Relative spectral transform-perceptual linear prediction (RASTA-PLP) is used in the proposed method to extract the acoustic features at the frame level. Autoregressive moving average (ARMA) filter is applied to smooth the temporal curves of extracted features. The trained network predicts the coefficients to construct a ratio mask based on mean square error (MSE) objective cost function. The less aggressive Wiener filter is placed as an additional layer on the top of a DNN to produce an enhanced magnitude spectrum. Finally, the noisy speech phase is used to reconstruct the enhanced speech. The experimental results demonstrate that the proposed DNN framework with less aggressive Wiener filtering outperforms the competing speech enhancement methods in terms of the speech quality and intelligibility.
The aim of this work was to measure subjective speech intelligibility in an enclosure with a long reverberation time and comparison of these results with objective parameters. Impulse Responses (IRs) were first determined with a dummy head in different measurement points of the enclosure. The following objective parameters were calculated with Dirac 4.1 software: Reverberation Time (RT), Early Decay Time (EDT), weighted Clarity (C50) and Speech Transmission Index (STI). For the chosen measurement points, a convolution of the IRs with the Polish Sentence Test (PST) and logatome tests was made. PST was presented at a background of a babble noise and speech reception threshold - SRT (i.e. SNR yielding 50% speech intelligibility) for those points were evaluated. A relationship of the sentence and logatome recognition vs. STI was determined. It was found that the final SRT data are well correlated with speech transmission index (STI), and can be expressed by a psychometric function. The difference between SRT determined in condition without reverberation and in reverberation conditions appeared to be a good measure of the effect of reverberation on speech intelligibility in a room. In addition, speech intelligibility, with and without use of the sound amplification system installed in the enclosure, was compared.