Showing posts tagged
#facts

Science: Why Does Your Voice Sound Different on a Recording?

Greg Foot tells us exactly why we hate the sound of our own voice on answering machines and such like in this science video.

When we make a recording of our own voice then play it back, we are hearing it more or less as other people do. The sound waves travel as a series of vibrations through the air and meet our ear drum. The ear drum in turn sets three tiny bones vibrating - the incus, malleus and the stapes and they send vibrations into the cochlea. The cochlea translates the vibrations into nerve signals and those are sent to the brain. Why then does that sound so different to what we perceive as our own voice?

When you speak you hear your own voice in two different ways. The first is as above, vibrating sound waves hitting your ear drum. The second way is via vibrations inside your skull actually set off by your vocal chords. Those vibrations travel up through your bony skull and again set the ear drum vibrating. However as they travel through the bone they spread out and lower in pitch, giving you a false sense of bass. Then when you hear a recording of your voice, it sounds distinctly higher and the comparison can be quite surprising.

Is it OK to Pee in the Ocean? [Reactions]

Peeing in the ocean: many have done it, but few admit to it.

Fortunately for beachgoers everywhere, our latest episode of Reactions explains why, from an environmental perspective, it is absolutely OK to pee in the ocean.

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How Home Air Conditioning Triumphed Over the Open Air Movement

Bill explains how the rise of home air conditioning had to battle the open air movements in public school: They regarded it as only for factories where it was first introduced. Only when movie theatres added air conditioning in the 1930 and 1940s did it become popular for the home.

7 Things You Didn’t Know About Terminator

We are fans of Arnold Schwarzenegger’s overall body of work. Terminator: Genisys piques our interest, even if it’s spelled wrong.

Here’s 7 things you didn’t know about the killer time-traveling robot franchise!

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How Do Languages Change and Evolve?

Over the course of human history, thousands of languages have developed from what was once a much smaller number. How did we end up with so many? And how do we keep track of them all?

Alex Gendler explains how linguists group languages into language families, demonstrating how these linguistic trees give us crucial insights into the past.

Lesson by Alex Gendler, animation by Igor Coric.

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