MultiFacet: A multi-tasking framework for speech-to-sign language generation
Sign language is a rich form of communication, uniquely conveying meaning through a combination of gestures, facial expressions, and body movements. Existing research in sign language generation has predominantly focused on text-to-sign pose generation, while speech-to-sign pose generation remains relatively underexplored. Speech-to-sign language generation models can facilitate effective communication between the deaf and hearing communities. In this paper, we propose an architecture that utilises prosodic information from speech audio and semantic context from text to generate sign pose sequences. In our approach, we adopt a multi-tasking strategy that involves an additional task of predicting Facial Action Units (FAUs). FAUs capture the intricate facial muscle movements that play a crucial role in conveying specific facial expressions during sign language generation. We train our models on an existing Indian Sign language dataset that contains sign language videos with audio and text translations. To evaluate our models, we report Dynamic Time Warping (DTW) and Probability of Correct Keypoints (PCK) scores. We find that combining prosody and text as input, along with incorporating facial action unit prediction as an additional task, outperforms previous models in both DTW and PCK scores. We also discuss the challenges and limitations of speech-to-sign pose generation models to encourage future research in this domain. We release our models, results and code to foster reproducibility and encourage future research1.
Publication typeProceedings paper