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Re: Auditory wheel

hi all --

just to stick my head in on this one, the notion that there are color naming universals has been questioned, see Kay and Reiger's "Language, Thought, and Color: Recent Developments" in Trends in Cognitive Sciences 10:2 (2006). for example, cultures near the equator lack separate terms for green and blue, because "excessive exposure to ultraviolet radiation yellows the lenses" (from the article).

i would also add that the color wheel itself works largely because of the way it is represented on the computer screen. RGB and other computer color systems are spherical spaces, and therefore you can create these kinds of "wheels". biologically, there are 4 types of cells in the eye - which is why i used the LMS color space when analyzing my dissertation color data (on sound-color matching).

perhaps _analogy_ is best served by saying the color wheel is like pitch perception... but that oversimplifies both. i always thought timbre was a better thing to relate to color -- as evidenced by a timbre/color synaesthete with whom i'm working at the moment...



On Fri, 19 Mar 2010, Martin Braun wrote:
all the problems with Shepard tones that you mentioned disappear at once and completely, if you take experimental subjects that have absolute pitch (APers). See below:

 I considered Shepard tones in rhythm as well as Risset's variants in
pitch.  From a preliminary trial, it seemed difficult for subjects to
determine consistent perceptual boundaries in the cycle.

APers have perceptual boundaries that are as stable and as automatic as color boundaries in the general population.

We're interested where people innately segregate sensory inputs along the wheel, be it in vision or audition.

Exactly this is what APers do.

With color, these boundary determinations are quite repeatable. With sound, Shepard tones seemed to make the problem quite difficult; it may simply be, however, that subjects were given insufficient exposure.

More exposure would not help. But with APers you will see that the boundaries will probably be even more precisely repeatable than with the color wheel.

Good luck.

matthew mccabe <mccabem@xxxxxxx>
visiting assistant professor / music tech :: columbus state university
ph.d., music composition :: uf college of fine arts
lab member :: reilly cognition and language lab :: uf phhp
http://plaza.ufl.edu/mccabem/     http://www.euph0r1a.net/