In order to see and use the applet, you must be using a Java compatible web browser. Most new browsers, such as the latest versions of Netscape Navigator and Internet Explorer, are suitable. Note that some browsers have the ability to allow or disallow Java applets; check the preferences (probably under "network" or "security") of your browser if you aren't seeing the applet but think you should.
In order to hear the sounds produced by Big Ears, you must have a sound card or built-in sound hardware installed in your system.
Some people have reported problems with the audio playback used in Big Ears. The problem most often experienced is a sort of "double articulation" of each note. Unfortunately this is one of the drawbacks of current Java sound support. Some browsers are able to play Java audio better than others, but they are all improving.
Because I hand-sampled my Yamaha U-1 piano! The samples aren't perfectly consistent, but I think they are quite good given the constraints of Java audio (8 bit, 8000 hz, mono).
"Big ears" is an expression used mostly by jazz musicians. A person with "a good ear" for music is said to have "big ears."
Yes. Sound support in Java is severely limited, but this should change sometime in 1997. When more advanced capabilities are available, Big Ears should get a (sonic) face lift. Further applets may be added to allow users to train their ears in different ways. Suggestions are welcome!
The following enhancements are planned for the near future:
- Interval Driller repeat button will play the exact same interval (it will start on the same note and have the same direction).
- Keyboard will have a control to turn on or off the messages. (Turning them off speeds things up significantly, so that you can actually make something like music with it.)