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Wild Sounds of Google Earth & the Ultimate Cold Call

For the past week or so, I’ve been indulging in a little sonically enhanced virtual travel courtesy of the new sound layer now available for Google Earth (and Google Maps). Using the Wild Soundscape Tour, you can listen to field recordings made on site, while viewing, say, the Amazon rainsforest or the glaciers of Antarctica. At the moment, there are thirty field recordings (complete with field notes) collected by bioacoustician, Bernie Krause. And you can hear a whole lot more of Krause’s recordings (he is an extraordinarily prolific field recordist) at Wild Sanctuary. It’s fascinating and also a bit sobering, as there are some stark “before” and “after” sonic snapshots, documenting the effects of such human activities as logging. For a more complete story, check this article from the Christian Science Monitor online.

For those who wish dial up nature directly, you can place a call to the Vatnajokull glacier in Iceland to hear the sound of its slow demise. It’s an expensive proposition for those not in the UK, since you have to connect to a British mobile number: +44 (0) 7758 225698. Cheap yankee that I am, I’ve yet to brave the fees, but am curious to hear from any RF readers/listeners who choose to make this cool connection. For more, check out BLDG BLOG or this article in the Guardian online.


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