How Noise-canceling Headsets Work?

There are two main methods of noise cancellation (although a third shall also be detailed a bit later on) with regards to headsets, earphones and other portable devices. Here’s a bit about them and how they work… 

The first type of noise cancellation basically occurs whenever anything obstructs the inner ear; this has the effect of dulling our ability to hear whatever’s going on around us. If you put your hands over your ears right now, or you stick your fingers in your ears, the background noise will diminish. This, in a very real sense, is a form of noise cancellation. In this regard, any set of headphones that cover the ear, or even the types that sit inside the ear, effectively cancel out background noise and are therefore ‘noise cancelling’.

The second type of noise cancellation is a little bit more complicated. Typically, these headphones cost more money, but they offset this cost by being rather clever and also very effective. The second type of headphones are those that generate a low-level of white noise around the vicinity of the speaker. The white noise, largely inaudible to the Human ear, creates a sort of ‘sound vacuum’ that eliminates all background noise, allowing you to focus purely on whatever you are listening to.

There is also one more type of noise-cancelling headset, which is the bone-conduction headset (sometimes known as ‘bonephones’), these headphones actually bypass your outer ear entirely and go instead to vibrate the tiny bones in your inner ear. Your brain still understands this every bit as much as it would if you were listening through your outer ear (or pinna) but you now have the added option of chucking good old fashioned ear plugs into the equation, whilst at the same time still continuing to use your headphones.

With gadgets like tablet computers, smartphones and MP3 players becoming more and more prevalent in modern society, headphones and earpieces are becoming increasingly commonplace. People are now trying to have conversations, listen to music or even hold video conferences in traditionally loud places.

From busy streets to crowded trains, it has never been more important for people to be able to hear content clearly and easily whilst they are ‘on the go’ – it is for this reason that noise cancelling headsets have become such a popular consumer item in the early 21st century. 

How does an aeroplane’s ‘black box’ work?

After doing a little research, I can now tell you (basically) everything you ever wanted to know about black boxes…

In the average commercial aircraft, you’ll find the presence of multiple (usually four) microphones in the cockpit at any given time. They are located in the pilot and co-pilot’s headsets, as well as in the cockpit itself. Not only do these microphones record conversations between the pilots and cabin crew, they also record any ambient noise (such as switches being thrown or sounds generated by technical issues). The microphones all connect to the cockpit voice recorder (CVR), a master unit that stores the last 30 minutes of sound. The tape operates on a loop, essentially erasing itself every half hour. Continue reading

Truly Communication? The Modern Communication : A Normative Critique.

Communication is the activity of conveying information through the exchange of thoughts, messages, or information, as by speech, visuals, signals, writing, or behavior. It is the meaningful exchange of information between two or more living creatures.
One definition of communication is “any act by which one person gives to or receives from another person information about that person’s needs, desires, perceptions, knowledge, or affective states. Communication may be intentional or unintentional, may involve conventional or unconventional signals, may take linguistic or non-linguistic forms, and may occur through spoken or other modes.”
Communication requires a sender, a message, and a recipient, although the receiver doesn’t have to be present or aware of the sender’s intent to communicate at the time of communication; thus communication can occur across vast distances in time and space. Communication requires that the communicating parties share an area of communicative commonality. The communication process is complete once the receiver understands the sender’s message.
Communicating with others involves three primary steps:
Thought: First, information exists in the mind of the sender. This can be a concept, idea, information, or feelings.
Encoding: Next, a message is sent to a receiver in words or other symbols.
Decoding: Lastly, the receiver translates the words or symbols into a concept or information that a person can understand.
There are a variety of verbal and non-verbal forms of communication. These include body language, eye contact, sign language, haptic communication,and chronemics. Other examples are media content such as pictures, graphics, sound, and writing. The Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities also defines the communication to include the display of text, Braille, tactile communication, large print, accessible multimedia, as well as written and plain language, human-reader, augmentative and alternative modes, means and formats of communication, including accessible information and communication technology. Feedback is a critical component of effective communication.
Verbal communication
Human spoken and pictorial languages can be described as a system of symbols and the grammars by which the symbols are manipulated. The word “language” also refers to common properties of languages. Language learning normally occurs most intensively during human childhood. Most of the thousands of human languages use patterns of sound or gesture for symbols which enable communication with others around them. Languages seem to share certain properties although many of these include exceptions. There is no defined line between a language and a dialect. Constructed languages such as Esperanto, programming languages, and various mathematical formalisms are not necessarily restricted to the properties shared by human languages. Communication is the flow or exchange of information within people or a group of people.
Nonverbal communication
Nonverbal communication describes the process of conveying meaning in the form of non-word messages. Some forms of non verbal communication include chronemics, haptics, gesture, body language or posture, facial expression and eye contact, object communication such as clothing, hairstyles, architecture, symbols, infographics, and tone of voice, as well as through an aggregate of the above. Speech also contains nonverbal elements known as paralanguage. These include voice lesson quality, emotion and speaking style as well as prosodic features such as rhythm, intonation and stress. Research has shown that up to 55% of human communication may occur through non verbal facial expressions, and a further 38% through paralanguage. Likewise, written texts include nonverbal elements such as handwriting style, spatial arrangement of words and the use of emoticons to convey emotional expressions in pictorial form.
Oral communication
Oral communication, while primarily referring to spoken verbal communication, can also employ visual aids and non-verbal elements to support the conveyance of meaning. Oral communication includes speeches, presentations, discussions, and aspects of interpersonal communication. As a type of face-to-face communication, body language and choice tonality play a significant role, and may have a greater impact upon the listener than informational content. This type of communication also garners immediate feedback.
Business communication
A business can flourish only when all objectives of the organization are achieved effectively. For efficiency in an organization, all the people of the organization must be able to convey their message properly.
Written communication and its historical development
Over time the forms of and ideas about communication have evolved through the continuing progression of technology. Advances include communications psychology and media psychology, an emerging field of study.
The progression of written communication can be divided into three “information communication revolutions”:
# Written communication first emerged through the use of pictographs. The pictograms were made in stone, hence written communication was not yet mobile.
# The next step occurred when writing began to appear on paper, papyrus, clay, wax, etc. with common alphabets. Communication became mobile.
# The final stage is characterized by the transfer of information through controlled waves of electromagnetic radiation and other electronic signals.
Communication is thus a process by which meaning is assigned and conveyed in an attempt to create shared understanding. This process, which requires a vast repertoire of skills in interpersonal processing, listening, observing, speaking, questioning, analyzing, gestures, and evaluating enables collaboration and cooperation.
Misunderstandings can be anticipated and solved through formulations, questions and answers, paraphrasing, examples, and stories of strategic talk. Written communication can be clarified by planning follow-up talks on critical written communication as part of the every-day way of doing business. A few minutes spent talking in the present will save valuable time later by avoiding misunderstandings in advance. A frequent method for this purpose is reiterating what one heard in one’s own words and asking the other person if that really was what was meant.
Effective communication
Effective communication occurs when a desired effect is the result of intentional or unintentional information sharing, which is interpreted between multiple entities and acted on in a desired way. This effect also ensures the messages are not distorted during the communication process. Effective communication should generate the desired effect and maintain the effect, with the potential to increase the effect of the message. Therefore, effective communication serves the purpose for which it was planned or designed. Possible purposes might be to elicit change, generate action, create understanding, inform or communicate a certain idea or point of view. When the desired effect is not achieved, factors such as barriers to communication are explored, with the intention being to discover how the communication has been ineffective.
Barriers to effective human communication
Barriers to effective communication can retard or distort the message and intention of the message being conveyed which may result in failure of the communication process or an effect that is undesirable. These include filtering, selective perception, information overload, emotions, language, silence, communication apprehension, gender differences and political correctness
This also includes a lack of expressing “knowledge-appropriate” communication, which occurs when a person uses ambiguous or complex legal words, medical jargon, or descriptions of a situation or environment that is not understood by the recipient. Continue reading

Say I’m in a high-speed car chase, what’s the best way to escape the police?

(Asked by Nick from Kent)

In my experience, the weapons cheat usually works a treat. I find that a roadblock is considerably less of an issue if you’re armed with a rocket launcher and twin uzis…

As for the real world, one wonders just why you’re asking me, Nick? (I really don’t want this article popping up as evidence at your trial while I go down for aiding an abetting you). Still, I must answer the questions my editor selects for me, so I’ll give this one a go (but don’t come crying to me if you end up serving several consecutive life sentences, OK?) Continue reading

The Long Road Home: Radios used on Transport Systems and Fleets

According to the UK Government, there were an estimated 5.2 billion bus passenger journeys undertaken on our roads in 2011/2012. Public and private transportation is not only big business; it is also of massive importance to the smooth running of the country.

Whilst only 14% of the UK’s 25 million commuters travel to work by bus or train, this still accounts for over 1.7 million people. In order for a country this reliant on public transport to survive and thrive, it is absolutely imperative that transport workers can communicate with each other in a quick, efficient manner, fuelling an industry that, by necessity, spans the length and breadth of the nation. Continue reading

Music and biking: match built in heaven

One can find an excellent the number of positives that come with regular biking. It is great training, it helps you to empty your head and unwind and it lets you explore some of the more fascinating natural surroundings in the local area.

Biking can also be economical, environmentally friendly (assuming you do not have a bloke on the road behind you hauling your briefcase along with a suit and tie like a certain Prime Minister who will stay nameless) and good for all elements of the body, from aerobic exercise to cardio vascular work out. Continue reading

Are Earphones Destructive to Your Ears?

In fact the answer is sure, earphones may be very harmful to your ears. 

A group with the University of Leicester lately proved that noises louder than a hundred and ten intensity cause damage to some special sort nerve cell outside layer, which in turn may cause tinnitus (basically a active or whining within the ears – and here’s me thinking that it simply made everything sound ‘a little tinny’) and also temporary deafness in some instances.  Continue reading

How to find the top headphones for use when exercising?

Hi and welcome to a modern group of assistance to the headset inquiries. Ever wanted to find out about something headphone, earpiece or receiver linked? Now’s your chance. Due to the large amount of questions we are so repeatedly asked, we’ve reached into our mailbox and chosen the 9 most relevant (and most often submitted) questions. Enjoy.

Oh, by the way, if your inquiry is not here, then merely mail us an communication and come back in a few… you could find it featured in the later series. Cheers. Continue reading