Here are some recent audio-related items that caught my eye:
Fast(er) Fourier Transform: MIT researchers have developed a new algorithm that claims to improve on the original Fast Fourier Transform's efficiency in calculating discrete Fourier transforms. This could mean being able to process audio and other data more efficiently than ever before, with potentially significant implications in the areas of compression and other processing applications.
Tin-Eared Teens: A study a while back that received a lot of attention found that younger music listeners preferred low-quality MP3s to higher-quality formats - presumably the result of a new 'iPod' generation of listeners having grown up listening to, and becoming acclimated to, the sound of compressed music. A new study, however, suggests otherwise. Conducted by audio company Harman, the latest study found that high-school students preferred lossless music to MP3s (and flat-response loudspeakers to those with distorted or unbalanced sound).
'Circuit' Diagram: An amusing 'circuit' diagram at webcomic site xkcd reminds me of some DIY audio "designs" I've seen, and the lengths to which some audiophiles will go to achieve the 'ultimate' sound!
Young Listeners and LPs?: Once again CNET's audio blog is a source of amusement and frustration. This time it's a poll that supposedly asks "Why do young people play LPs?" The poll itself does nothing to answer the question, but if you don't already know the answer (hint: because "it's cool"), you can figure it out from the comments. Meanwhile, the blog author himself once again leaves us with another nugget of audio wisdom. In this case, after observing that "most people rarely listen to digital music without doing something else" he concludes that "apparently, digital music isn't compelling enough to give your undivided attention." Oh, so that explains why people don't listen to LPs on the go!
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