As part of the ongoing project, we are now looking at sounds and how they can convey different, and sometimes difficult, aspects of interactivity. Some of these particular aspects are not normally associated with audial representations, and this presents us with some unique challenges (aren’t they all?). One good example is distance. How can we create audio icons that express the distance to a target object, and yet can still work independently of normal visual stimulus?
To this end, we are conducting user tests to determine the parameters that are most widely judged to represent a sense of ‘far away’, or ‘near’. This will help us use such parameters efficiently and economically, major concerns when placing sound in mobile devices.