GALE Phase 2 Arabic Broadcast Conversation Speech Part 1, Linguistic Data Consortium (LDC) Catalog Number LDC2013S02 and ISBN 1-58563-636-3, was developed by LDC and is comprised of approximately 123 hours of Arabic broadcast conversation speech collected in 2006 and 2007 by LDC as part of the DARPA GALE (Global Autonomous Language Exploitation) Program.
Corresponding transcripts are released as GALE Phase 2 Arabic Broadcast Conversation Transcripts Part 1 (LDC2013T04).
Broadcast audio for the DARPA GALE program was collected at LDC's Philadelphia, PA USA facilities and at three remote collection sites: Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, Hong Kong, Republic of China (Chinese); Medianet, Tunis, Tunisia (Arabic); and MTC, Rabat, Morocco (Arabic). The combined local and outsourced broadcast collection supported GALE at a rate of approximately 300 hours per week of programming from more than 50 broadcast sources for a total of over 30,000 hours of collected broadcast audio over the life of the program.
LDC’s local broadcast collection system is highly automated, easily extensible and robust and capable of collecting, processing and evaluating hundreds of hours of content from several dozen sources per day. The broadcast material is served to the system by a set of free-to-air (FTA) satellite receivers, commercial direct satellite systems (DSS) such as DirecTV, direct broadcast satellite (DBS) receivers, and cable television (CATV) feeds. The mapping between receivers and recorders is dynamic and modular; all signal routing is performed under computer control, using a 256x64 A/V matrix switch. Programs are recorded in a high bandwidth A/V format and are then processed to extract audio, to generate keyframes and compressed audio/video, to produce time-synchronized closed captions (in the case of North American English) and to generate automatic speech recognition (ASR) output. An overview of the system, the sources recorded and the configuration of the recording laboratory are contained in the Guidelines for Broadcast Audio Collection Version 3.0 included in this release.
LDC desgined a portable platform for remote broadcast collection. This is a TiVO-style digital video recording (DVR) system that records two streams of A/V material simultaneously. It supports analog CATV (NTSC and PAL) and FTA DVB-S satellite programming and can operate outside of the United States. It has a small footprint weighs less than 30 pounds and can be transported as carry-on luggage.
Medianet collected Arabic programming from across the Gulf region using its internal system and LDC's portable broadcast collection platform installed in 2008. The portable platform deployed at Medianet’s Tunisian collection facility collected multiple streams of regional Arabic programming from various sources. MTC collected Arabic programming using its internal collection system.
The broadcast conversation recordings in this release feature interviews, call-in programs and round table discussions focusing principally on current events from the following sources: Al Alam News Channel, based in Iran; Al Arabiya, a news television station based in Dubai; Aljazeera , a regional broadcaster located in Doha, Qatar; Al Ordiniyah, a national broadcast station in Jordan; Lebanese Broadcasting Corporation, a Lebanese television station; Nile TV, a broadcast programmer based in Egypt; Oman TV, a national broadcaster located in the Sultanate of Oman; Saudi TV, a national television station based in Saudi Arabia; and Syria TV, the national television station in Syria. A table showing the number of programs and hours recorded from each source is contained in the readme file.
This release contains 143 audio files presented in Waveform Audio File format (.wav), 16000 Hz single-channel 16-bit PCM. Each file was audited by a native Arabic speaker following Audit Procedure Specification Version 2.0 which is included in this release. The broadcast auditing process served three principal goals: as a check on the operation of LDC's broadcast collection system equipment by identifying failed, incomplete or faulty recordings; as an indicator of broadcast schedule changes by identifying instances when the incorrect program was recorded; and as a guide for data selection by retaining information about a program’s genre, data type and topic.
Please see file.tbl for a complete file list as well as checksums for this publication.
Additional information, updates, bug fixes may be available in the LDC catalog entry for this corpus at LDC2013S02.
This work was supported in part by the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, GALE Program Grant No. HR0011-06-1-0003. The content of this publication does not necessarily reflect the position or the policy of the Government, and no official endorsement should be inferred.
Portions © 2006-2007 Al Alam News Channel, Al Arabiya, Aljazeera, Al Ordiniyah, Nile TV, Oman TV, PAC Ltd, Saudi TV, Syria TV, © 2006-2007, 2011, 2013 Trustees of the University of Pennsylvania