Browse Definitions :
Definition

speech disfluency

A speech disfluency is any disruption in the flow of spoken language that is caused by the speaker. Types of speech disfluencies include stuttering and hesitations, as well as the fillers people insert to avoid awkward pauses while they find their next words and perhaps ensure there is no opening to allow interruption.

A few categories of speech disfluencies:

Fillers – words or syllables inserted into speech such as “er,” “um,” “like,” “well,” “so” and “uh.” Fillers don’t add to the meaning of what is being said but are very common in human speech – according to some estimates, fillers make up as much as 20 percent of spoken language.

Hesitations – It’s less common for a speaker to simply pause than to insert a filler but people’s speech patterns are rarely regular.

Repeated words, syllables or sounds – Stuttering is one example of this, in which speakers tend to get hung up on the starting sound of a word, repeat it over and over and have difficulty getting past it.

Repairs – Speakers may, for example, mispronounce a word and repeat it with the correct pronunciation before moving on.

False starts – Speakers sometimes interrupt their own sentences, beginning a new subject before finishing the original thought.

Prolongations – These may be used to allow the speaker more time to formulate the rest of a sentence or may be used simply for the effect, as in: “Aaaaaaaaaannnnnd… I win!”

Blocks – In this case, people can’t produce the word they want.

Most people use speech disfluencies frequently and also have them happen inadvertently. AI technologies like natural language processing (NLP) systems require training in disfluencies. In voice-related AI applications disfluencies may be added to make the speech seem more human. Recent AI assistants, for example, have begun to adopt disfluencies to sound more natural to the people they interact with. Hesitations and filler words, in particular, are employed to make the AI sound less robotic.

This was last updated in June 2018

Continue Reading About speech disfluency

SearchCompliance
  • ISO 31000 Risk Management

    The ISO 31000 Risk Management framework is an international standard that provides businesses with guidelines and principles for ...

  • pure risk

    Pure risk refers to risks that are beyond human control and result in a loss or no loss with no possibility of financial gain.

  • risk reporting

    Risk reporting is a method of identifying risks tied to or potentially impacting an organization's business processes.

SearchSecurity
  • Twofish

    Twofish is a symmetric-key block cipher with a block size of 128 bits and variable-length key of size 128, 192 or 256 bits.

  • walled garden

    On the internet, a walled garden is an environment that controls the user's access to network-based content and services.

  • potentially unwanted program (PUP)

    A potentially unwanted program (PUP) is a program that may be unwanted, despite the possibility that users consented to download ...

SearchHealthIT
SearchDisasterRecovery
  • What is risk mitigation?

    Risk mitigation is a strategy to prepare for and lessen the effects of threats faced by a business.

  • fault-tolerant

    Fault-tolerant technology is a capability of a computer system, electronic system or network to deliver uninterrupted service, ...

  • synchronous replication

    Synchronous replication is the process of copying data over a storage area network, local area network or wide area network so ...

SearchStorage
  • hard disk drive (HDD)

    A computer hard disk drive (HDD) is a non-volatile data storage device.

  • Remote Direct Memory Access (RDMA)

    Remote Direct Memory Access (RDMA) is a technology that enables two networked computers to exchange data in main memory without ...

  • storage (computer storage)

    Data storage is the collective methods and technologies that capture and retain digital information on electromagnetic, optical ...

Close