Thursday, 5 May 2011

bats ears, owls ears and human ears

I'm only really thinking about ears.
Managed to see the ossicular chain in situ today, delicate and hard to find and also slightly worse for wear. Feeling pretty good about my project so far (The anatomy and physiology of the auditory pathway) but also a little out of my depth with very learned tutors both intimidating and inspiring. I had intended to look further into the emotional influence of music and tonality but there is little room for such an advanced subject.

One great fact I recently added to my limited repertoire, from the excellent Professor John Peters, University of Dundee:
The owl, has two ears which are assymetrical, that is to say, they sit at different heights on each side of the head. As we humans generally have ears at the same height on both sides of the head, we can locate the source of sound in one plane. Sound reaches one ear before the other.
An owl can detect source on both a horizontal and vertical plane! I think that is pretty great.

Another fact I read about which I like:
A decrease in the duration of a waveform increases energy splatter (spread of spectral energy) and the tone is therefore perceived as a click rather than a pitch...

Need to read more about the pinna and whole outer ear. I had dismissed its role in hearing completely.

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