Sound

At what point does your brain perceive sounds as music?

Psychologist zeros in on when sound becomes music.

Medical Xpress examines the work being done by Adam Greenberg, an assistant professor of psychology at University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, who is using a type of brain imaging called imaging to study how the brain recognizes and responds to music.  Professor Greenberg found that “some of [the] brain regions that process the basic properties of sound are shared with regions that are involved in processing low-level properties of visual information.”  He adds that the “finding has implications for the kinds of things that we sometimes experience, like when you’re listening to music and you get visual imagery popping into your head or feelings of wanting to dance.”  In short, because the activity of sight and sound regions overlap, “the experience of may be much more than just an auditory phenomenon.”

Link via @HyperacusisCure.

A fascinating look at “sound hunters”:

London, as You’ve Never Heard It Before.

And a question to readers: would you be interested in sound surveys of New York City?  In an effort to broaden the scope of Silencity, we hope to offer a few sound surveys of our own in the coming months.  We will keep you posted.

Need some white noise to help you sleep? You’re in luck:

White Noise 7 is out, and wants to be like Instagram for restful sounds.

When the White Noise app first went live in 2008, it went from being one of the first mobile apps to go live in the Apple store to the number one app in the fitness and health category.  Eight years later and the White Noise app remains popular and now allows users to upload sounds from around the world.  White Noise 7 is ad-supported, so no cost to download.

Turning Down The Background Noise

Could Help Toddlers Learn.

NPR reports on a recent study published in the journal Child Development that found that “[]loud background noise may make it harder for toddlers to learn language.”  NPR adds that “[m]any other studies have already found that background noise can limit children’s abilities to learn. Television noise, in particular, is ubiquitous in American homes and may negatively affect a child’s ability to concentrate.”

And there’s more.  Click the first link for the full story.

The Sounds Of Summer:

Worrying About Noise In The Sultry Season.  Joanna Weiss reflects on the sounds of summer and asks, “where is the line drawn, when someone’s joy is someone else’s nuisance.”

Link via @jeaninebotta.

Can Sound Kill You?

The short answer is “yes,” theoretically.  The long answer, thankfully, is that “it would be difficult, and perhaps impossible, to artificially generate a noise loud enough to kill a person.”  Wondering how loud a sound must be to kill and how sound alone could kill a human?  Here are your answers:

[I]’s been speculated that 195 decibels would do the trick. (By comparison, normal conversation registers at 60 dB; an ambulance siren at 10 feet is about 115 dB). At that volume, air pressure fluctuations would be severe enough to damage your lungs, creating lethal air bubbles in the blood or simply causing the lungs to pop like balloons.

Now you know what your nightmare will feature tonight!

Link via @QuietMark.

This really is a must read:

The Loudest Sound In The World Would Kill You On The Spot, by

The article is a tour de force about sounds we can hear, sounds we can’t hear, and sounds that can kill.  Ok, the last bit is a passing reference, but the article is fascinating.  Click the link.  You’re welcome.