Friday, March 28, 2008

Woah...first recorded sounds of a human voice

Wow. There's been a discovery of a recording of a human voice from 1860 (1860!!!!) in a French patent office. The oldest known recording of a voice - and there was no way to play it back until now!!! It was recorded on a soot-covered piece of paper, but until modern scanning and computer tech came about, there was no way to recover the sound traced into the paper. It's amazing, really, to think about people creating a device to record sound, knowing they'd have no way to play it back, but doing it anyway.

It's a wonderful piece of history. My favorite aspect of anthropology (my major in University) was linguistics, and I still have a soft spot for it. Sound recordings really aid in the study of languages and how they change: and although this clip is of a well-known song, and not common speech, it's still really interesting. A piece of the past coming alive.

Read the CBC article to learn how all this came about, here.

Listen to the recording here, it's creepy, but amazing.

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