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Abstract

In October 2011 I was nominated by the President of the Audio Engineering Society as Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of the Audio Engineering Society. My responsibility began in November. Due to large workload of new duties, with this issue I will end my work as Editor-in-Chief of Archives of Acoustics. Beginning from the next issue of 2012, the new Editor-in-Chief, professor Andrzej Nowicki, the Director of the Institute of Fundamental Technological Research (IPPT PAN) of Polish Academy of Sciences will take over the editorial duties. His scientific achievements in acoustics will guarantee the quality of the journal's further development towards strong international position. I was fortunate to have followed in the footsteps of such outstanding Editors-in-Chief of Archives of Acoustics as profs. Leszek Filipczy?ski and Tadeusz Powa?owski, and to have served them both as Associate Editor. I will always be grateful for the possibility to learn editorial skills from them, and to continue the valuable work of my predecessors.
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Abstract

This paper presents a relationship between Auditory Display (AD) and the domains of music and acoustics. First, some basic notions of the Auditory Display area are shortly outlined. Then, the research trends and system solutions within the fields of music technology, music information retrieval and music recommendation and acoustics that are within the scope of AD are discussed. Finally, an example of AD solution based on gaze tracking that may facilitate music annotation process is shown. The paper concludes with a few remarks about directions for further research in the domains discussed.
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Abstract

The paper presents a comparative study of music features derived from audio recordings, i.e. the same music pieces but representing different music genres, excerpts performed by different musicians, and songs performed by a musician, whose style evolved over time. Firstly, the origin and the background of the division of music genres were shortly presented. Then, several objective parameters of an audio signal were recalled that have an easy interpretation in the context of perceptual relevance. Within the study parameter values were extracted from music excerpts, gathered and compared to determine to what extent they are similar within the songs of the same performer or samples representing the same piece.
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Abstract

Simultaneous perception of audio and visual stimuli often causes concealment or misrepresentation of information actually contained in these stimuli. Such effects are called the "image proximity effect" or the "ventriloquism effect" in the literature. Until recently, most research carried out to understand their nature was based on subjective assessments. The authors of this paper propose a methodology based on both subjective and objectively retrieved data. In this methodology, objective data reflect the screen areas that attract most attention. The data were collected and processed by an eye-gaze tracking system. To support the proposed methodology, two series of experiments were conducted - one with a commercial eye-gaze tracking system Tobii T60, and another with the Cyber-Eye system developed at the Multimedia Systems Department of the Gdańsk University of Technology. In most cases, the visual-auditory stimuli were presented using a 3D video. It was found that the eye-gaze tracking system did objectivize the results of experiments. Moreover, the tests revealed a strong correlation between the localization of a visual stimulus on which a participant's gaze focused and the value of the "image proximity effect". It was also proved that gaze tracking may be useful in experiments which aim at evaluation of the proximity effect when presented visual stimuli are stereoscopic.
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Abstract

The aim of this work is to present problems related to tinnitus symptoms, its pathogenesis, hypotheses on tinnitus causes, and therapy treatment to reduce or mask the phantom noise. In addition, the hypothesis on the existence of parasitic quantization that accompanies hearing loss has been recalled. Moreover, the paper describes a study carried out by the Authors with the application of high-frequency dither having specially formed spectral characteristics. Discussion on preliminary results obtained and conclusions are also contained.
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Abstract

The aim of this paper is to describe the process of choosing the best surround microphone technique for recording of choir with an instrumental ensemble. First, examples of multichannel microphone techniques including those used in the recording are described. Then, the assumptions and details of music recording in Radio Gdansk Studio are provided as well as the process of mixing of the multichannel recording. The extensive subjective tests were performed employing a group of sound engineers and students in order to find the most preferable recording techniques. Because the final recording is based on the mix of "direct/ambient" and "direct-sound all-around" approaches, a subjective quality evaluation was conducted and on this basis the best rated multichannel techniques were chosen. The results show that listeners might consider different factors when choosing the best rated multichannel techniques in separate tasks, as different systems were chosen in the two tests.
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Abstract

In this article some key events concerning founding Polish Section of the Audio Engineering Society were presented. In addition, the history covering International Symposia on Sound Engineering and Mastering was outlined. Also, papers contained in this issue were shortly reviewed.
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Abstract

Due to an increasing amount of music being made available in digital form in the Internet, an automatic organization of music is sought. The paper presents an approach to graphical representation of mood of songs based on Self-Organizing Maps. Parameters describing mood of music are proposed and calculated and then analyzed employing correlation with mood dimensions based on the Multidimensional Scaling. A map is created in which music excerpts with similar mood are organized next to each other on the two-dimensional display.
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Abstract

In the paper, a noise map service designated for the user interested in environmental noise is presented. Noise prediction algorithm and source model, developed for creating acoustic maps, are working in the cloud computing environment. In the study, issues related to the noise modelling of sound propagation in urban spaces are discussed with a particular focus on traffic noise. Examples of results obtained through a web application created for that purpose are shown. In addition, these are compared to results obtained from the commercial software simulations based on two road noise prediction models. Moreover, the computing performance of the developed application is investigated and analyzed. In the paper, a flowchart simulating the operation of the noise web-based service is presented showing that the created application is easy to use even for people with little experience in computer technology.
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Abstract

This article presents a study on music genre classification based on music separation into harmonic and drum components. For this purpose, audio signal separation is executed to extend the overall vector of parameters by new descriptors extracted from harmonic and/or drum music content. The study is performed using the ISMIS database of music files represented by vectors of parameters containing music features. The Support Vector Machine (SVM) classifier and co-training method adapted for the standard SVM are involved in genre classification. Also, some additional experiments are performed using reduced feature vectors, which improved the overall result. Finally, results and conclusions drawn from the study are presented, and suggestions for further work are outlined.
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Abstract

The aim of this paper is two-fold. First, some basic notions on acoustic field intensity and its measurement are shortly recalled. Then, the equipment and the measurement procedure used in the sound intensity in the performed research study are described. The second goal is to present details of the design of the engineered 3D intensity probe, as well as the algorithms developed and applied for that purpose. Results of the intensity probe measurements along with the calibration procedure are then contained and discussed. Comparison between the engineered and the reference commercial probe confirms that the designed construction is applicable to the sound field intensity measurements with a sufficient effectiveness.
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Abstract

The primary aim of this research study was to model acoustic conditions of the Courtyard of the Gdańsk University of Technology Main Building, and then to design a sound reinforcement system for this interior. First, results of measurements of the parameters of the acoustic field are presented. Then, the comparison between measured and predicted values using the ODEON program is shown. Collected data indicate a long reverberation time which results in poor speech intelligibility. Then, a thorough analysis is perform to improve the acoustic properties of the model of the interior investigated. On the basis of the improved acoustic model two options of a sound reinforcement system for this interior are proposed, and then analyzed. After applying sound absorbing material it was noted that the predicted speech intelligibility increased from bad/poor rating to good category.
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Abstract

The main goal of this research study is focused on creating a method for loudness scaling based on categorical perception. Its main features, such as: way of testing, calibration procedure for securing reliable results, employing natural test stimuli, etc., are described in the paper and assessed against a procedure that uses 1/2-octave bands of noise (LGOB) for the loudness growth estimation. The Mann-Whitney U-test is employed to check whether the proposed method is statistically equivalent to LGOB. It is shown that loudness functions obtained in both methods are similar in the statistical context. Moreover, the band-filtered musical instrument signals are experienced as more pleasant than the narrow-band noise stimuli and the proposed test is performed in a shorter time. The method proposed may be incorporated into fitting hearing strategies or used for checking individual loudness growth functions and adapting them to the comfort level settings while listening to music.
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Abstract

The paper shows a study on the relationship between noise measures and sound quality (SQ) features that are related to annoyance caused by the traffic noise. First, a methodology to perform analyses related to the traffic noise annoyance is described including references to parameters of the assessment of road noise sources. Next, the measurement setup, location and results are presented along with the derived sound quality features. Then, statistical analyses are performed to compare the measurement results and sound quality features. The included conclusions are focused on showing that the obtained loudness values, regardless of the used system, are similar in a statistical sense. Contrarily, sharpness, roughness and fluctuation strength values differ for the tools employed.
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Abstract

An innovative system designed for the continuous monitoring of acoustic climate of urban areas was presented in the paper. The assessment of environmental threats is performed using online data, acquired through a grid of engineered monitoring stations collecting comprehensive information about the acoustic climate of urban areas. The grid of proposed devices provides valuable data for the purpose of long and short time acoustic climate analysis. Dynamic estimation of noise source parameters and real measurement results of emission data are utilized to create dynamic noise maps accessible to the general public. This operation is performed through the noise source prediction employing a propagation model being optimized for computer cluster implementation requirements. It enables the system to generate noise maps in a reasonable time and to publish regularly map updates in the Internet. Moreover, the functionality of the system was extended with new techniques for assessing noise-induced harmful effects on the human hearing system. The principle of operation of the dosimeter is based on a modified psychoacoustic model of hearing and on the results of research performed with participation of volunteers concerning the impact of noise on hearing. The primary function of the dosimeter is to estimate, in real time, auditory effects which are caused by exposure to noise. The results of measurements and simulations performed by the system prototype are depicted and analyzed. Several cases of long-term and short-term measurements of noise originating from various sources were considered in detail. The presented outcomes of predicted degree of the hearing threshold shift induced during the noise exposure can increase the awareness of harmfulness of excessive sound levels.
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Abstract

The results of long-term continuous noise measurements in two selected schools are presented in the paper. Noise characteristics were measured continuously there for approximately 16 months. Measurements started eight months prior to the acoustic treatment of the school corridors of both schools. An evaluation of the acoustic climates in both schools, before and after the acoustic treatment, was performed based on comparison of these two periods of continuous measurements. The autonomous noise monitoring stations, engineered at the Multimedia Systems Department of the Gdańsk University of Technology were used for this purpose. Investigations of measured noise, especially its influence on hearing sense, assessed on ground of spectral analyses in critical bands, is discussed. Effects of occupational noise exposure, including the Temporary Threshold Shift simulation, are determined. The correlation of the above said measurement results with respective instantaneous noise levels is discussed, and concluding remarks are presented. Some additional indicators such as air pollution or video analysis aiming at the analysis of corridor occupancy are also measured. It should be remembered that excessive noise, or air pollution may be evidence of a dangerous event and may pose health risks.
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Abstract

A system setup for measurements of acoustic field, together with the results of 3D visualisations of acoustic energy flow are presented in the paper. Spatial sampling of the field is performed by a Cartesian robot. Automatization of the measurement process is achieved with the use of a specialized control system. The method is based on measuring the sound pressure (scalar) and particle velocity(vector) quantities. The aim of the system is to collect data with a high precision and repeatability. The system is employed for measurements of acoustic energy flow in the proximity of an artificial head in an anechoic chamber. In the measurement setup an algorithm for generation of the probe movement path is included. The algorithm finds the optimum path of the robot movement, taking into account a given 3D object shape present in the measurement space. The results are presented for two cases, first without any obstacle and the other - with an artificial head in the sound field.
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Abstract

The paper presents functionality and operation results of a system for creating dynamic maps of acoustic noise employing the PL-Grid infrastructure extended with a distributed sensor network. The work presented provides a demonstration of the services being prepared within the PLGrid Plus project for measuring, modeling and rendering data related to noise level distribution in city agglomerations. Specific computational environments, the so-called domain grids, are developed in the mentioned project. For particular domain grids, specialized IT solutions are prepared, i.e. software implementation and hardware (infrastructure adaptation), dedicated for particular researcher groups demands, including acoustics (the domain grid “Acoustics”). The infrastructure and the software developed can be utilized mainly for research and education purposes, however it can also help in urban planning. The engineered software is intended for creating maps of noise threat for road, railways and industrial sources. Integration of the software services with the distributed sensor network enables automatic updating noise maps for a specific time period. The unique feature of the developed software is a possibility of evaluating auditory effects which are caused by the exposure to excessive noise. The estimation of auditory effects is based on calculated noise levels in a given exposure period. The outcomes of this research study are presented in a form of the cumulative noise dose and the characteristics of the temporary threshold shift.
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