Octave Illusion Experiment: Need Help

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Jarathor
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Octave Illusion Experiment: Need Help

Postby Jarathor » Fri Nov 07, 2008 3:12 am UTC

Hey all - I'm kinda new here (I joined a while ago, but never really posted anything). Right now I'm working on a project for my science class and I need some help. My project goal was to determine if there was a correlation between gender and the perception of a certain so-called audio illusion (the "octave illusion" to be specific). I need to expand my sample set, so I thought I would turn towards the internet for help.
If you want to help, just listen to the first file that is linked to on this page:

http://philomel.com/musical_illusions/e ... lusion.php

It's a .WAV file, just in case somebody has problems with it.
All you have to do is listen to the 30 second audio sample with stereo headphones on (kinda important) and post (or PM if you want) your gender, dominant hand, and what you heard. The audio sample is simply an alternation (in both ears) between two tones an octave apart. The majority of people should hear:
(This is hidden so it doesn't corrupt the data - read after you have listened to the file)
Spoiler:
the high tone in the right ear and the low tone in the left ear, even if they switch the headphones. The accepted explanation for this is that the brain will "hear" the higher tone on the dominant side ear, and the lower tone is heard in the other ear. There are many papers that go into much greater detail than that on the Web. Left handed people, apparently, have no such correlation.

Any help you guys could give would be greatly appreciated.

P.S. If you guys feel like being extra-helpful, recruit some friends and family to listen.
Many thanks in advance to those who help.
Last edited by Jarathor on Sat Nov 08, 2008 3:38 am UTC, edited 2 times in total.

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yy2bggggs
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Re: Octave Illusion Experiment: Need Help

Postby yy2bggggs » Fri Nov 07, 2008 4:20 am UTC

Ah, illusions!

I'm male and right-handed, with what I suppose is a negative correlation datum for such a category.

The percepts I get are identical when the headphones are swapped, as follows:

The higher tone alternates from ear to ear. The lower two tones seem fairly balanced--both the higher and lower of the low tones are roughly perceived stereoscopically; that is, the higher of the low tones favor neither ear, nor does the lower.

I'd be interested in a summary of this sampling when you're done.
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SPsnow02
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Re: Octave Illusion Experiment: Need Help

Postby SPsnow02 » Fri Nov 07, 2008 4:31 am UTC

I'm male and right handed;

The first listen (Headphones correct) I heard the High tones in the right ear.
The second listen (Headphones swapped) I heard the High tones in the right ear.

So, I guess I fit the trend ^.^
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qbg
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Re: Octave Illusion Experiment: Need Help

Postby qbg » Fri Nov 07, 2008 4:40 am UTC

I'm male, left handed, and it is really hard to decide which side the higher tone tends to be on. It seems to just barely tend to the right slightly, though as soon as I try pay attention to one side, it goes to that side.

erk070
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Re: Octave Illusion Experiment: Need Help

Postby erk070 » Fri Nov 07, 2008 6:02 am UTC

I'm male and right-handed. It took me a while to actually hear the high tone and, when I noticed it, it seemed like there were actually three tones. But, the highest tone was definitely in my right ear with the headphones in both positions.

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Re: Octave Illusion Experiment: Need Help

Postby Starside » Fri Nov 07, 2008 6:09 am UTC

Kinda hard to tell. I guess more in my right ear, but about halfway through I noticed the pattern, where both tones would alternate between both ears. At that point I could hear the tone wherever I felt like it, or in both.

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Re: Octave Illusion Experiment: Need Help

Postby Bobber » Fri Nov 07, 2008 7:57 am UTC

Very interesting, I will surely listen to it when I get home!

I just wanted to note that another time it might be a bad idea to tell people what they're "supposed" to hear before they actually listen to it, since it might give a placebo effect and skew the results. At least put it in a spoiler tag or something ;)

Also, when you are all done with it, please post your results!
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Re: Octave Illusion Experiment: Need Help

Postby Notch » Fri Nov 07, 2008 12:13 pm UTC

Male, right handed, high note in right ear before and after flipping the headphones. Cool. =D

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Re: Octave Illusion Experiment: Need Help

Postby DanielCopelin » Fri Nov 07, 2008 2:00 pm UTC

Male, left-handed, high note in sort-of in left ear, then in right ear when I switch headphones around. Quite hard to pick out the notes and it seems like I can make the high note be wherever I want it to be.

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Re: Octave Illusion Experiment: Need Help

Postby Xanthir » Fri Nov 07, 2008 2:59 pm UTC

Male, right-handed. High tone was in my right ear both times.
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Charlie!
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Re: Octave Illusion Experiment: Need Help

Postby Charlie! » Fri Nov 07, 2008 7:15 pm UTC

Male, right handed, high tone was on the right side, low on the left.

Editing in a note: I heard both tones on both sides, but it seemed like the low was emphasized on the left and the high on the right. Just being specific I guess.
Last edited by Charlie! on Sat Nov 08, 2008 2:50 am UTC, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Octave Illusion Experiment: Need Help

Postby asad137 » Fri Nov 07, 2008 11:35 pm UTC

Male, right handed.

When I have the headphones on the right way, I hear high on left, low on right.
When I swap the headphones around, I hear high on right, low on left.

Asad

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Re: Octave Illusion Experiment: Need Help

Postby Hexadecimator » Fri Nov 07, 2008 11:59 pm UTC

You're doing the experiment wrong. By telling the subjects the goal of the experiment, you have biased the results towards success (or not, if the subjects here are particularly malevolent). Sorry, stats class must be getting to me.

Are speakers okay? The right ear in my headphones is broken.
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Re: Octave Illusion Experiment: Need Help

Postby ++$_ » Sat Nov 08, 2008 1:30 am UTC

I'm right handed, and I have absolute pitch (if that matters). I heard a single low tone that flipped from side to side.

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Jarathor
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Re: Octave Illusion Experiment: Need Help

Postby Jarathor » Sat Nov 08, 2008 3:36 am UTC

Wow, a lot more replies than I expected so soon. Thanks all of you who've replied so far; and as well to those of you who reminded me to not ruin the data with telling people the results... *sheepish look* I guess to my awake-too-long brain it made sense at the time. So I put that in a spoiler tag to prevent further bias-ing. It's interesting how many different ways people have been percieving this - there was variety mentioned in the papers I read, but I didn't expect it to vary this much. Once again, thanks to all of you who've helped so far.
To those who mentioned it, I'll post a summary of the project when it's finished - this isn't my only method of collecting data, and I'm planning on a sample size of about 50-100, so that should be enough (for high school anyway), although I'd love to have 200.

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Re: Octave Illusion Experiment: Need Help

Postby The-Rabid-Monkey » Sat Nov 08, 2008 5:00 am UTC

Male, Ambidextrous.
To me it sounds like it's in both ears. So sounds quite Mono. Once I've flipped, sounds mono still.

Might I point out you might want to direct link the file, as I noticed after listening that the site also has spoilers.
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Re: Octave Illusion Experiment: Need Help

Postby yy2bggggs » Sat Nov 08, 2008 2:59 pm UTC

The-Rabid-Monkey wrote:Male, Ambidextrous.
To me it sounds like it's in both ears. So sounds quite Mono. Once I've flipped, sounds mono still.

Might I point out you might want to direct link the file, as I noticed after listening that the site also has spoilers.

There's one spoiler the site does not have (at least easy to get to), and that involves the characteristics of the waveform. $++_ has an interesting percept, especially in light of the claims (which I've no reason to doubt) of absolute pitch. Lacking knowledge of the actual sounds produced, there's good potential reason for me to reanalyze my percepts--specifically, to determine which ear the higher pitch is in when the higher of the two lower tones is perceived. Note that if this is considered interesting, it is a counterexample to the notion that the experiment is corrupted by suggestion.

I don't think it's a problem to describe what goes into the test--it may very well corrupt the data, but it would measure something different. If you really wanted to remove bias, though (based on what you want to test for), then the requests should specifically require PM responses rather than a thread, as posting of percepts in itself provides bias.

Furthermore, at a minimum, it's still a necessity to describe at least what one should listen for. (This, for example, is one reason you may want bias--to help you gauge what the potential percepts are in order to develop better tests).
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mattdude
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Re: Octave Illusion Experiment: Need Help

Postby mattdude » Sat Nov 08, 2008 3:49 pm UTC

Male, Right handed, High tone in left ear both times.....


sorry to break the curve :p

i'm also goofy footed while snowboarding, as well as many other opposites from "general" natural preferences that people have... that is to say, i am completely backwards :p

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Re: Octave Illusion Experiment: Need Help

Postby Ashi » Sat Nov 08, 2008 4:02 pm UTC

Female, right-handed.

I started to get confused, because I always heard the high tone in my left ear. Guess that makes me an alien?
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Re: Octave Illusion Experiment: Need Help

Postby arkady » Sat Nov 08, 2008 7:54 pm UTC

I heard two tones, swapping between my ears.

I am a left handed male, and should probably also declare that I am a sound engineer as well.
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Re: Octave Illusion Experiment: Need Help

Postby kellsbells » Sat Nov 08, 2008 8:26 pm UTC

Female, Left-Handed. I heard the higher tone in my left ear, mostly. When I switched the headphones I couldn't really tell where it was coming from... And yeah, it would be really interesting to see the results of this when you're done!
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Jarathor
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Re: Octave Illusion Experiment: Need Help

Postby Jarathor » Wed Nov 12, 2008 11:46 pm UTC

Hey everyone - thanks for all of the help. So far I have enough data to start getting it all together, but if you still want to contribute, go ahead. I should be able to post the results by Friday, at latest Monday. Anyway, thanks to all of you who helped.

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DrProfessorPhD
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Re: Octave Illusion Experiment: Need Help

Postby DrProfessorPhD » Thu Nov 13, 2008 1:52 am UTC

Male, right, high right, low left
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roflcopter
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Re: Octave Illusion Experiment: Need Help

Postby roflcopter » Thu Nov 13, 2008 2:18 am UTC

Okay I am male, right with my right hand but do everything else with my left including writing(although not as fast as with my right). I did not hear any distinction to begin with but found that I could control what side it was on by will during the entire .wav and I could do that no matter which way I had the headphones.

This is interesting to me because in the past all of the left brain/right brain illusions or tests did not work on me, I have always been able to control which way the object is spinning or what I see in a picture at will, I normally see both things from the beginning and then can focus on it happening one way or the other.

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Re: Octave Illusion Experiment: Need Help

Postby Simius » Thu Nov 13, 2008 7:03 pm UTC

I'm male and right-handed. The high tone seemed to come from the left, whichever way around I was wearing the headphones. The tapping sound was coming from both sides equally.


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