RIchard Futrell and Connor Mayer

UCI Language Science Faculty Richard Futrell and Connor Mayer recently presented at the 2021 Annual Meeting on Phonology. Futrell’s paper was a collaboration with Huteng Dai titled Learning phonotactics in a differentiable framework of subregular languages. The paper presents a framework for learning probabilistic variants of several subregular languages and compares their performance on several long-distance phonotactic restrictions. Mayer’s paper was a collaboration with Travis Major and Mahire Yakup titled “Are neutral roots in Uyghur really neutral? Experimental and structural evidence”, which argues against a purported covert phonemic vowel contrast in Uyghur.

Mayer also recently presented a collaborative project with Bryan Gick and Chenhao Chiu at Acoustics Week in Canada 2021.  The paper was titled “Biomechanical simulation of lip compression and spreading”, and describes a simulation study using a biomechanical model of the vocal tract that details the properties of muscle activations driving two commonly attested labial speech postures.


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