Science, Technology, and Current Futurism
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Mysterious Stone Instruments Keep Being Discovered in Vietnam

Mysterious Stone Instruments Keep Being Discovered in Vietnam | Science, Technology, and Current Futurism | Scoop.it
Archaeologists, historians, and anthropologists puzzled over the stones, until someone decided to put them in order from largest to smallest, and lay them over a pair of supports, like a xylophone. “It immediately became apparent…that this was undoubtedly a musical instrument,” New Scientist wrote in 1957. “It was possible to play tunes on them ranging from a simplified version of Claire de Lune to Pop Goes the Weasel.” The markings on them were identified as remnants of the tuning process.
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Human language's deep origins appear to have come directly from birds and primates

Human language's deep origins appear to have come directly from birds and primates | Science, Technology, and Current Futurism | Scoop.it
Human language builds on birdsong and speech forms of other primates, researchers hypothesize in new research. From birds, the researchers say, we derived the melodic part of our language, and from other primates, the pragmatic, content-carrying parts of speech. Sometime within the last 100,000 years, those capacities fused into roughly the form of human language that we know today.

 

The expressive layer and lexical layer have antecedents, the researchers believe, in the languages of birds and other mammals, respectively. For instance, in another paper published last year, Miyagawa, Berwick, and Okanoya presented a broader case for the connection between the expressive layer of human language and birdsong, including similarities in melody and range of beat patterns.

 

Birds, however, have a limited number of melodies they can sing or recombine, and nonhuman primates have a limited number of sounds they make with particular meanings. That would seem to present a challenge to the idea that human language could have derived from those modes of communication, given the seemingly infinite expression possibilities of humans.

 

Reference:

Shigeru Miyagawa, Shiro Ojima, Robert C. Berwick, Kazuo Okanoya. The integration hypothesis of human language evolution and the nature of contemporary languages. Frontiers in Psychology, 2014; 5 DOI:10.3389/fpsyg.2014.00564


Via Dr. Stefan Gruenwald
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Cochlear Implant Users Can Now Hear Music with New Strategies

Cochlear Implant Users Can Now Hear Music with New Strategies | Science, Technology, and Current Futurism | Scoop.it
Bionics University of Washington scientists have developed a new way of processing the signals in cochlear implants to help users hear music better. The technique lets users perceive... [[ This is a content summary only.
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Pop Music Getting Sadder and Sadder - The Science of Society

Pop Music Getting Sadder and Sadder - The Science of Society | Science, Technology, and Current Futurism | Scoop.it
New research finds Top 40 hits increasingly convey a complex mix of feelings.

 

excerpt: "Over the past half-century, pop hits have become longer, slower and sadder, and they increasingly convey “mixed emotional cues,” according to a study just published in the journal Psychology of Aesthetics, Creativity and the Arts."

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Getting brands into brains using bone conduction

Getting brands into brains using bone conduction | Science, Technology, and Current Futurism | Scoop.it
Just when you thought it was safe to have a nap on a train, the window you’re resting your head on might try to sell you a new app, skin cream or tickets to the theatre. Sky Deutschland has announced a…
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This bit (heh) alone blows the mind about sound and hearing: "One team of researchers has demonstrated that we can hear even when sound is transmitted through the eyeball. This seems to work because the eyeball and inner ear are connected through the plumbing within your head. Beethoven famously composed some of his most important pieces of music when he was deaf. Apparently, he would bite on a rod connected to his piano in order to use bone conduction to overcome his deafness. Two hundred years later, hearing via the teeth is being exploited in a new hearing aid, called the SoundBite."

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Auto-Tune - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Auto-Tune is an audio processor created by Antares Audio Technologies, which uses a proprietary device to measure and alter pitch in vocal and instrumental music recording and performances through use of a phase vocoder.[2][not in citation given] It was originally intended to disguise or correct off-key inaccuracies, allowing vocal tracks to be perfectly tuned despite originally being slightly off-key.

The processor slightly bends pitches to the nearest true semitone (to the exact pitch of the nearest tone in traditional equal temperament). Auto-Tune can also be used as an effect to distort the human voice when pitch is raised or lowered significantly.[3] The overall effect to the discerning ear can be described as hearing the voice leap from note to note stepwise, like a synthesizer.

Auto-Tune is available as a plug-in for professional audio multi-tracking suites used in a studio setting and as a stand-alone, rack-mounted unit for live performance processing.[4] Auto-Tune has become standard equipment in professional recording studios.[5]

Sharrock's insight:

It appears that auto-tune is used WITH video editing mash up to produce the new art form "auto tune mashup". 

 

from the article: "Despite its bad reputation, some critics have argued that Auto-Tune opens up new possibilities in pop music, especially in hip-hop and R&B. Instead of using it as a crutch for poor vocals—its originally designed purpose—some musicians intentionally use the technology to mediate and augment their artistic expression. "It’s neither a fight with technology nor love of it; it’s more like glossy coexistence, a strange new dance of give-and-take," writes Jayce Clayton. "The plug-in creates a different relation of voice to machine than ever before. Rather than novelty or some warped mimetic response to computers, Auto-Tune is a contemporary strategy for intimacy with the digital. As such, it becomes quite humanizing. Auto-Tune operates as a duet between the electronics and the personal. A reconciliation with technology."[46]

 
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