The Daily Jog

The Daily Jog

Carl Zornes

How Old Are Your Ears?

By Carl ZornesPosted February 14, 2013 11:59am (EST)
Does the sound of gum-chewing make you cringe? Find out why you may not be alone with Sound Uncovered. (Credit: Sound Uncovered)

Does the sound of gum-chewing make you cringe? Find out why you may not be alone with Sound Uncovered. (Credit: Sound Uncovered)


Hi, and welcome to The Daily Jog, GPB’s newest blog from our Education & New Media team. As the name New Media suggests, technology is a big part of our group. Here at The Daily Jog you will see posts from our team about new technology trends and cool things you can do with technology in the classroom and day-to-day life... Basically, if it can be plugged in, turned on or downloaded, it’s fair game!

And that brings me to Sound Uncovered, an iPad app from the Exploratorium, a science/art museum located in San Francisco, CA. This educational app is all about playing tricks on your brain. Each screen has a simple activity and a question... Touch a series of keys and determine which one has the highest note. Want to test your hearing age? Move a knob along a slider until you hear the tone (I’m still young, baby!).

One of my favorite exercises is called Eyes vs. Ears. Once you turn on the virtual TV, a person starts repeating a word. After a few seconds you close your eyes. All of a sudden you hear a different word, thanks to the McGurk effect. (The video was dubbed with a different word than what the person was appearing to say, but since our brain sees certain cues on the speaker’s face, it changes the perception of what we hear.)

Sounds can also make us really happy or could they could drive us crazy. Sound Uncovered delves into the ones that sell - car doors closing and the auditory skeuomorphic turn signal - to the sounds that pierce the ears - loud chewing and silverware clanking.

This fun, free app takes advantage of some of the latest mobile technology and turns learning about tones and frequencies into a truly immersive experience. Download the app today, and tell us how old your ears are in the comments below!

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