3 posts tagged with alexandergrahambell.
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Speaking Machines: the history of synthesizing speech

Replicating the sound of human voices with any sort of control goes back to Vox Humana, one of the oldest organ stops, dating back at least as far as the late 1500's. Then there's a dip into the uncanny valley with Joseph Faber's Euphonia, before we got to Perfect Paul and beyond, to building custom voices. BBC's Radio 4 had a half-hour special on this topic, titled Klatt's Last Tapes - History of Speech Synthesis, and you can read more, plus a transcript, here. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief on Mar 12, 2016 - 14 comments

Listening to the past, recorded on tin foil and glass, for the first time in over a century

Towards the end of the 1800s, there were three primary American groups competing to invent technology to record and play back audio. Alexander Graham Bell worked with with Charles Sumner Tainter and Chichester Bell in at their Volta Laboratory in Georgetown, Washington, D.C., while Thomas A. Edison worked from his Menlo Park facilities, and Emile Berliner worked in his independent laboratory in his home. To secure the rights to their inventions, the three groups sent samples of their work to the Smithsonian. These recordings became part of the permanent collections, now consisting of 400 of the earliest audio recordings ever made. But knowledge of their contents was limited to old, short descriptions, as the rubber, beeswax, glass, tin foil and brass recording media are fragile, and playback devices might damage the recordings, if such working devices are even available. That is, until a collaborative project with the Library of Congress and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory came together to make 2D and 3D optical scanners, capable of visually recording the patterns marked on discs and cylinders, respectively. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief on Feb 10, 2012 - 21 comments

You have to have some manners, baby can't you see?

Telephone Manners For Kids (SLYT WTF)
posted by yellowbinder on Jun 1, 2011 - 20 comments

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