TED Talk on Cochlear Implants and Music

I have a lot of work to do this time of year, but wanted to post my first thoughts on this TED video. First – no captions yet! gah! I can understand the main speaker, but the video clips aren’t clear enough to hear. Second – I’m entirely happy with my two CIs. It’s been almost 2 years since the second one was activated and this is definitely my new normal and I wouldn’t go back to hearing aids if given a chance. Third – I’m still playing saxophone in the sax sextet and in the band. We often play music in the house from Pandora, usually classical or jazz. Music I know well sounds the same as I remember it (because I’m remembering it), music that’s new to me starts out a bit muddled but becomes clearer with...

Tagxedo Word Clouds

Tagxedo Word Clouds

I’ve been having fun playing with a site called Tagxedo (that’s like Tuxedo but with Tag). It’s similar to Wordle but has more features, like you can choose the shape you want your word cloud to appear in. This one is a list of all the songs that the saxophone ensemble I play with has performed. (click to embiggen)

Mechanical Piano that “Speaks”

I haven’t gotten to watch this video with sound yet, but I can imagine what it sounds like.  There are captions of a sort that explain what’s going on.  It’s very similar to how our brain learns to hear cochlear implant stimulus as...

NPR interview about CIs

Sometimes I forget that the things I post to the CI mailing lists I’m on might be good to put here too: The transcript of this NPR show looks interesting. I haven’t gotten to listen to this yet (forgot to bring headphones to work, forgot to bring spare battery for CI #1 too! 3 weeks away sure messed with my morning routine). Here’s a snippet: Mr. JOSH STOHL (Doctoral Student): So we’re going to listen to the “Talk of the Nation” theme in its original form, as you and I would hear it. (Soundbite of “Talk of the Nation” theme) Mr. STOHL: Now we’re going to hear it as a cochlear implant patient would hear it. (Soundbite of altered “Talk of the Nation” theme) Mr. STOHL: And here is one of the algorithms...

Saxophone Ensemble Video


5 Months with a Cochlear Implant, Music and Lectures

First things first.  Music with my cochlear implant is way way beyond my expectations. But I had pretty low expectations. Seriously, music sounds great now (5 months from activation).  The CI adds a whole new layer of sounds that I couldn’t hear before.  It helps bring out the lyrics.  It adds the higher frequency percussion, cymbals, drums besides bass, harmonicas, all kinds of things.  Yes, more cow-bell! I’ve been learning to “play” the drums in The Beatles: Rock Band.  My second attempt at a “rhythm game”, the first was DDR which I had trouble with because beats weren’t always apparent to me.  I also tried the Wii Music game but the only instrument I could hear well was the tuba!  Rock Band, at...

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