Image by bschmove via FlickrRealizing that learning echo location when it is not an everyday necessity can be a long and arduous process, I’d like to apologize for not having posted here for a while. I’m am still striving to understand this phenomenon and I’m currently working to refine my beacon.
The Problem with Echolocating using the Mouth Click
I’m finding that making a clicking noise with my mouth presents several issues that I would like to avoid. I’m attempting to adjust my beacon method to something a bit more amenable to echolocation and modern social situations. Below is a list of downfalls I’ve identified about the mouth click:
- It creates a sound source that is too close to my ears, making it harder to hear the echo over the source.
- Less socially acceptable – not that that will stop me, but in an effort to offer the best solution to the inquisitive general public, I’d prefer something a bit less socially intrusive.
- It denies you the use of your mouth for things like eating on-the-go, swallowing, talking, etc.
- The time in between clicks is dead space and does not provide any data. In order to increase the resolution the clicks must get closer together.
- Having the mouth open for long periods can cause dryness and discomfort.
- Not a preferable method in quiet places, like the library.
What I’ve been using recently has proven to be very effective. I would even say more effective than the blade pop or any other click I have tried. It is also non-intrusive to my environment – meaning it does not startle others and is acceptable to use in a quiet setting. The one negative observation I would make about this technique is that it is much better for sensing objects up close (up to 5-7 feet away) rather than far away. Objects that are farther than 5-7 feet away will most likely be difficult to pick up with this technique.
- Place the thumb and forefingers together in traditional “sock puppet” position.
- Slowly rub the thumb in circles on the fingers to create a high pitched rubbing sound.
- To isolate the source from your ears turn your hand away from you so that the thumb and forefingers are on the opposite side of your hand. Your hand will act as a barrier and will direct the sound away from you and toward your target. Remember, you want to hear the echo just as well, if not better than the source.
Anyhow, give this a try and let me know what you think about it.