The Im­por­tance of sound

Put the power of sound to work in your sites and ap­pli­ca­tions

Web Designer - - Awesome Audio -

“sound, even more than vi­su­als, is ca­pa­ble of mak­ing our mind believe we are in an­other world. It com­mu­ni­cates on a deep level, di­rectly tap­ping into our brains.” richard mat­tka award-win­ning in­ter­ac­tive di­rec­tor, de­signer and de­vel­oper

Sound is a crit­i­cal el­e­ment when mak­ing ex­pe­ri­ences en­gag­ing and com­pelling. If you need proof, try play­ing your favourite game or watch­ing your favourite movie with the vol­ume off. Am­bi­ent city noises, dis­tant sirens, and low rum­bling hums, drop you into the scene, even with­out the vi­su­als. Sounds cre­ate the mood and set the pace of an in­ter­ac­tive ex­pe­ri­ence. Mu­sic en­hances the sus­pense, ramps up the in­ten­sity, and ul­ti­mately trig­gers an emo­tional re­sponse, much more pow­er­fully than vi­su­als alone. Sound is ca­pa­ble of trans­port­ing us to an­other world as it com­mu­ni­cates on a deep level, di­rectly tap­ping into the brain. Psy­chol­ogy stud­ies have found mu­sic and sound con­nect on a in­stinc­tive level in the brain, into our most pri­mal selves. Im­mer­sive sites, such as world build­ing mod­els, in-world web ex­pe­ri­ences and games are greatly en­hanced with great sound ef­fects and mu­si­cal scores. Sites and ap­pli­ca­tions with en­gag­ing an­i­ma­tions, dy­namic vi­su­als or 3D, de­pend on solid sound de­sign. But, even the sim­plest sites can ben­e­fit from user feed­back and mean­ing­ful sig­nals through au­dio. In your projects, sounds can form part of the re­ward sys­tem in com­plet­ing tasks. For ex­am­ple, sound ef­fects that trig­ger with com­plet­ing a puz­zle make the act much more sat­is­fy­ing. A pleas­ant chime as a bar fills up, or as the user achieves a spe­cific goal – these all work to­gether to give short-term re­wards, while the user works to­wards a larger goal. Sound can pro­vide feed­back, to com­ple­ment vis­ual feed­back. But­tons make noises when clicked, a click­ing metronome can count you in be­fore record­ing. Sounds can help re­in­force that some­thing was done as a fur­ther way to ac­knowl­edge the user’s ac­tions. A way to say ‘yes’ your in­ter­ac­tion was re­ceived. In some cases, sounds can call out some­thing in a vis­ually busy land­scape. In time crit­i­cal ap­pli­ca­tions, they can more rapidly com­mu­ni­cate some­thing faster than vi­su­als might alone. User in­ter­faces (UIS), since the ear­li­est days of the com­mand-line, have used sound ef­fects in the form of sim­ple au­di­ble beeps, to warn of er­rors. And to­day, apps such as Twit­ter or Face­book use well-placed sounds for no­ti­fi­ca­tions and alerts. Skype uses au­dio to fa­cil­i­tate com­mu­ni­ca­tions. As we move into tech­nolo­gies away from screens, speech and ges­ture in­ter­faces are in­creas­ingly de­pen­dent on au­dio in­put and feed­back. As­sis­tant soft­ware and tools such as Alexa and Siri give au­dio feed­back fu­elled by pow­er­ful ar­ti­fi­cial in­tel­li­gence. Au­dio cues and speech recog­ni­tion can also be used to cre­ate a bet­ter ex­pe­ri­ence for those with dis­abil­i­ties or learn­ing dif­fi­cul­ties. With ever in­creas­ing sup­port, band­width and net­work­ing power, now is the time to put the power of sounds and mu­sic to work in your sites and ap­pli­ca­tions, through solid sound de­sign.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.