Gordon Reid of CEDAR Audio talks spectral editing and his three-decade CEDAR career

Not that long ago, the promise of being able to remove the squeak of a piano stool from the recording of a piano recital – without apparently disturbing a molecule of said recital – would have sounded like some form of alchemy and, in rural Cambridgeshire, might well have got you burned at the stake. Yet this, and other sonic miracles from CEDAR Audio’s Cambridge-based armory of audio processes have been improving upon reality for 30 years now. Managing director of CEDAR, Gordon Reid, gives us the low down... 

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Source: PSN Europe

Source: PSN Europe

Scientists at CU Denver help journalists independently confirm identify of masked ISIS militant

The school’s National Center for Media Forensics recently helped the New York Times independently confirm the identity of a war criminal who claimed to be the narrator in a series of ISIS propaganda videos and recordings.

In the video, the masked English-speaking narrator gloats about the capture of Syrian fighters.

"And we're here with the soldiers of Bashar,” the masked-man says. “You can see them here - digging their own graves in the very place where they were stationed."

The New York Times reached out to scientists here in Denver to help identify the ISIS militant.

"We specialize in analyzing that material and determining where it came from," said Jeff Smith, director of CU Denver’s National Center for Media Forensics. "The process that we apply is highly technical."

35-year-old Mohammed Khalifa, who partially grew up in Toronto, Canada, claims to be the ISIS narrator. Khalifa made the claim from a Syrian jail where he is being held. He was captured earlier this year by an American-backed militia.

The video was released in 2014 and became known as "the flames of war."

"And the flames of war are only beginning to intensify," the narrator is heard saying.

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Source: The Denver Channel

Source: The Denver Channel


Recording of "sonic attacks" on U.S. diplomats in Cuba spectrally matches the echoing call of a Caribbean cricket

Beginning in late 2016, diplomats posted to the United States embassy in Cuba began to experience unexplained health problems including ear pain, tinnitus, vertigo, and cognitive difficulties which reportedly began after they heard strange noises in their homes or hotel rooms. In response, the U.S. government dramatically reduced the number of diplomats posted at the U.S. embassy in Havana. U.S. officials initially believed a sonic attack might be responsible for their ailments. The sound linked to these attacks, which has been described as a high-pitched beam of sound, was recorded by U.S. personnel in Cuba and released by the Associated Press (AP). Because these recordings are the only available non-medical evidence of the sonic attacks, much attention has focused on identifying health problems and the origin of the acoustic signal. As shown here, the calling song of the Indies short-tailed cricket (Anurogryllus celerinictus) matches, in nuanced detail, the AP recording in duration, pulse repetition rate, power spectrum, pulse rate stability, and oscillations per pulse. 

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Source: Biorxiv.org

Source: Biorxiv.org