The Register: UK’s National Museum of Computing asks tunesmiths to recreate bleeps, bloops, and parps of retro game music

The Register: UK’s National Museum of Computing asks tunesmiths to recreate bleeps, bloops, and parps of retro game music. “The UK’s National Museum of Computing (TNMOC) is running a competition aimed at recreating the bleeps, whistles, and flatulent squawks of video game music from years gone by. It’s all in honour of the 40th anniversary of the BBC Micro, which, if memory serves, was not really a ball of fire in the sound department when put up against the Commodore 64 Sound Interface Device (SID) chip.”

National Geographic: You can now hear rainforest sounds worldwide—here’s why that matters

National Geographic: You can now hear rainforest sounds worldwide—here’s why that matters. “Gorillas beating their chests, chimpanzees pant-hooting, elephants rumbling—and poachers firing assault rifles—these are some of the more than a million hours of sounds recorded by a grid of 50 microphones in the Congolese rainforest since 2017. The massive acoustic monitoring effort covers about 480 square miles in the Republic of Congo’s Nouabalé-Ndoki National Park—an area about the size of Los Angeles. It’s part of Cornell University’s Elephant Listening Project, established in 1999 to detect communication among forest elephants and pinpoint poaching activity.”

The Conversation: Kapow! Zap! Splat! How comics make sound on the page

The Conversation: Kapow! Zap! Splat! How comics make sound on the page. “From Wolverine’s SNIKT! when unsheathing his claws, to Mozart’s Piano Concerto No. 23 in The Death of Stalin (later made into a film) the use of ‘textual audio’ invites comics readers to hear with their eyes. Fundamental elements such as symbols, font styles and onomatopoeia (where words imitate sounds) mean reading comics is a cross-sensory experience. New and old examples show the endless potential of the artform.”

The Conversation: This is what lockdown sounds like

The Conversation: This is what lockdown sounds like. “Three days after the first lockdown began in the UK, I put out a call via social media to ask for help capturing sounds which had changed as a result of governments’ actions around the world to curb the spread of the virus. It struck me that the extraordinary times in which we found ourselves would be worth documenting as far as the changing soundscape was concerned.”

Bloomberg CityLab: How the Pandemic Changed the Urban Soundscape

Bloomberg CityLab: How the Pandemic Changed the Urban Soundscape. “When cities went on lockdown during the pandemic, things got quieter, but they didn’t fall totally silent. Instead, the hooting of the scops owls became more distinct in Thessaloniki, Greece, where the sound of traffic once drowned them out. Birds in San Francisco sang in softer and clearer tones absent the honking of cars and rumbling of engines. Meanwhile in New York City, the humming of air conditioners from the towering buildings replaced the bustling noise of a once-packed Times Square.”

FAD Magazine: Swiss artist Zimoun to premiere audio performance online

FAD Magazine: Swiss artist Zimoun to premiere audio performance online. “The NYU Abu Dhabi (NYUAD) Art Gallery has announced the rollout of its second digital archive: the ZIMOUN exhibition. Going live on June 9, ZIMOUN is the second in a series of launches inviting the public to reunite with curators and artists as part of TRACE: Archives and Reunions. To mark each launch, The NYUAD Art Gallery will host a reunion with the artist. For this reunion, Swiss artist Zimoun will premiere a new work composed specifically for the Gallery’s online audience: a sound performance, to be experienced at home, with headphones, in the dark.”

The National: Missing the office? This website helps recreate the sound of your workplace from home

The National: Missing the office? This website helps recreate the sound of your workplace from home. “From ringing phones and printers to the distant hum of background conversation, the website allows you to play white noise to help you feel like you are in the office. There is even the odd sneeze and sniff thrown in, as well as the sound of heels clicking as a virtual colleague walks by.”

Popular Science: Inside the extraordinary experiment to save the Stradivarius sound

Popular Science: Inside the extraordinary experiment to save the Stradivarius sound. “Stradivari remains the defining figure in violin-making, a name on par with Chanel or Ferrari. He fashioned instruments for kings and cardinals, and his creations bring their distinctive voice to the repertoires of modern soloists like Itzhak Perlman and Anne-Sophie Mutter. Musicians, luthiers, and scientists have tried for decades to figure out what gives a Strad its beautiful sound, yet no one has ever quite replicated it. And so the dream is to create a digital archive that will survive long after the last Stradivarius falls silent, allowing composers and artists to continue making music with them.”

The MIT Press Reader: A Complete History of Collecting and Imitating Birdsong

The MIT Press Reader: A Complete History of Collecting and Imitating Birdsong. “Twenty-five years ago I sought for the first time to collect, sift, and standardize these wonderful, bizarre words with their anarchic spellings, absurd pronunciations, and uncertain meanings. That project culminated in ‘Aaaaw to Zzzzzd: The Words of Birds,’ the appendice to which is featured below. Here, we see the history of alternative attempts to collect bird songs and sounds, from musical composition through recording devices to duck calls, bird organs, singing bird automata, and varieties of bird clock.”

ABC News: Acoustic observatory will record ‘galaxy of sounds’ to help scientists monitor Australian wildlife

ABC News (Australia): Acoustic observatory will record ‘galaxy of sounds’ to help scientists monitor Australian wildlife. “Hundreds of solar-powered audio recorders are being installed across remote parts of Australia to create a unique ‘soundscape’ as the environment changes. The National Acoustic Observatory project, funded by the Australian Research Council, was a collaboration of academics from five universities.”

Crux: Site records religious sounds, such as bells, birds and U2

Crux: Site records religious sounds, such as bells, birds and U2. “The jaunty sound of a puja bell rings during an offering at the Jain Center of Central Ohio in southern Delaware County. Birds chirp in the background of a Druid ritual at ComFest in downtown Columbus. And the rhythmic harmony made by musicians at St. Patrick’s Episcopal Church performing a U2 song flows during worship at the Dublin Irish Festival. All of these sounds are part of the American Religious Sounds Project, a website and database of audio files from local religious experiences.”

Lifehacker: The Best Free Background Noise Generators for Working, Gaming, and Studying

Lifehacker: The Best Free Background Noise Generators for Working, Gaming, and Studying. “There are tons of background sound sites and apps, but most do the same things. We’ve compiled the best ones, all free online, plus a collection of the best background sound mobile apps. Use them as background noise while you work, read, study, play a tabletop RPG, or even in the background of a party.”