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Timing and event segregation

Pierre Divenyi writes:
Thus, the problem to be solved is to establish units of
t i m i n g  -- for the sake of musical meaning and perceptual

I'd like to add the demands that auditory display (AD) places upon usas
regards understanding this same phenomena.  If multiple independent units are
perceived as a single unit (presumably of a more complex timbre, as the onsets
become part of the overall texture), the information to be conveyed by the
display could be corrupted.  It is possible to avoid this design problem by
disallowing such small fast units or, I suppose, by training the system user
what 'fused' events sound like and what that means in terms of the data
driving the system.

One of the sonification systems I designed uses pulse onsets in the range of
50 to 250 milliseconds.  Speed and duration (as a percentage of on time) can
both be used as display variables.  We found, informally, that below 50 ms.
that display resolution was weak, and beyond 250 ms. the gaps between events
disrupted the information-conveying ability of the sonification display.  But,
at 50 ms. it is easy to perceive a single event, particularly with longer
durations.  If other continuous auditory streams were employed simultaneously
with the one described, confusion, not to mention masking, could become an

Gregory Kramer