Archive for the ‘scientific’ Category
Invented by Michael Callahan: Three pill-size electrodes on the throat pick up electrical signals generated between the brain and the vocal cords. A processor in the device then filters and amplifies the signals and sends them to an adjacent PC, where software decodes them and turns them into words spoken through the PC’s speakers. By placing the electrodes on the neck and “speaking” silently through vocal-cord movements (but without moving the mouth), the wearer generates enough neural activity to trigger this chain of events.
Audeo is capable of more than just giving a voice to those physically impaired though. It could be used to speak on the phone without ever actually vocalizing anything, opening up the possibilities to fantastical spy or military applications. That and it could one day get rid of that is-he-talking-to-me-or-someone-on-the-phone confusion around people wearing BlueTooth headsets.
Because white noise contains all frequencies, it is frequently used to mask other sounds. Why does white noise drown out voices? Here is one way to think about it. Let’s say two people are talking at the same time. Our brain can normally “pick out” one of the two voices and actually listen to it and understand it. However, if 1,000 people are talking simultaneously, there is no way that your brain can pick out one voice. It turns out that 1,000 people talking together sounds a lot like white noise. So when we turn on a fan to create white noise, we are essentially creating a source of 1,000 voices. The voice next-door makes it 1,001 voices, and our brain can’t pick it out any more.
apparently, different parts of our brain are used to process information involving different senses. smell and taste are chemoreceptions, closely related to the limbic system, an ancient part of the brain. touch, sound and sight are related to the cortices.
vision is processed in the occipital lobe (back of the head);
audition is processed in the temporal lobes (sides of the brain);
sensation is processed in the parietal lobe (top of the brain, slightly towards the back of the head);
taste is processed in the insular cortex (middle of the temporal lobe);
smell in the orbitofrontal lobe (front and bottom, near the eyes and nose)