Saturday, September 10, 2016

Magical Musical Maps

Let the map be your instrument and the sounds of the city be your inspiration and muse. It's time for a little map music.

Cinco Cidades is a fascinating project documenting the soundscapes of Portuguese cities. The  Folk Songs Project has recorded the ambient sounds at a number of locations in five different cities in Portugal. Using the Cinco Cidades soundmap you can can select and mix together any of these recordings to create your own musical composition from the sounds of Portugal's city streets.

To add a sound to your mix just select a marker on the map and click on the 'add sound to mix' button. You can adjust the levels of your mix by using the volume control on each sound recording that you have added to the mix.

If you don't want to create your own mix then click on the 'Load Mix' link instead, where you can listen to mixes created and saved by other users.

Ohio has 88 counties. A piano has 88 keys. So obviously Ohio is a piano!

Cartogrammar has mapped each county in Ohio to a different piano key. This means that on this map Ohio is a Piano, where each Ohio county is one of 88 piano keys. The map has 'The Entertainer' already programmed in. So, even if you never learnt to play the Ohiophone, you can still listen to a composition played on the map of Ohio.

This map was made with a now deprecated version of the Google Maps API. Therefore the background Google Map no longer loads. However the map overlay still works and you can still play tunes on the Ohio piano.

The GBIG Soundscape is another interactive map which allows you to create a mix from recorded sounds. This map allows you to recreate the soundscape of different locations around the world by creating your own mix of bird and frog songs recorded at specific locations.

The Global Biodiversity Information Facility has recently started to add rich media (sound, images, and video) to their open global biodiversity records. GBIF Soundscape has created a Leaflet map which allows you to reconstruct the 'soundscapes' of particular regions around the world by mixing the various bird and frog sounds that can be heard in those regions.

Select a region from the map and you can listen to a mix of all the bird and frog sounds which have been added to the GBIF data records at that location. At each location you can listen to all the recordings playing at once or listen to just the bird or frog songs. You can also click on the 'random' button to listen to a random mix from that location's sound recordings.
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