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A taxonomy of sound sources in restaurants
KTH, School of Computer Science and Communication (CSC), Speech, Music and Hearing, TMH, Music Acoustics. Nanyang Technological University, Singapore.ORCID iD: 0000-0001-8121-9263
(English)In: Applied Acoustics, ISSN 0003-682X, E-ISSN 1872-910XArticle in journal (Refereed) Submitted
Abstract [en]

Restaurants are complex environments where all our senses are engaged. Physical and psychoacoustic factors have been shown to be associated with perceived environmental quality in restaurants. More or less designable sound sources such as background music, voices, and kitchen noises are believed to be important in relation to the overall perception of the soundscape. Previous research publications have suggested typologies and other structured descriptions of sound sources for some environmental contexts, such as urban parks and offices, but there is no detailed account that is relevant to restaurants. While existing classification schemes might be extendable, an empirical approach was taken in the present work. We collected on-site data in 40 restaurants (n = 393), including perceptual ratings, free-form annotations of characteristic sounds and whether they were liked or not, and free-form descriptive words for the environment as a whole. The annotations were subjected to analysis using a cladistic approach and yielded a multi-level taxonomy of perceived sound sources in restaurants. Ten different classification taxa were evaluated by comparing the respondents' Liking of sound sources, by categories defined in the taxonomy, and their Pleasantness rating of the environment as a whole. Correlation analysis revealed that a four-level clade was efficient and outperformed alternatives. Internal validation of the Pleasantness construct was made through separate ratings (n = 7) of on-site free-form descriptions of the environment. External validation was made with ratings from a separate listening experiment (n = 48). The two validations demonstrated that the four-level Sound Sources in Restaurants (SSR) clade had good construct validity and external robustness. Analysis  of the data revealed two findings. Voice-related characteristic sounds including a ‘people’ specifier were more liked than those without such a specifier (d = 0.14 SD), possibly due to an emotional crossmodal association mechanism. Liking of characteristic sounds differed between the first and last annotations that the respondents had made (d = 0.21 SD), which might be due to an initially positive bias being countered by exposure to a task inducing a mode of critical listening. We believe that the SSR taxonomy will be useful for field research and simulation design. The empirical findings might inform theory, specifically research charting the perception of sound sources in multimodal environments.

Keyword [en]
soundscape, sound source, classification, perception, multimodal, restaurant, design
National Category
Other Engineering and Technologies not elsewhere specified Other Humanities not elsewhere specified Food Engineering
Research subject
Art, Technology and Design; Architecture; Technology and Health
URN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-177109OAI: diva2:871443

QS 2015

Available from: 2015-11-14 Created: 2015-11-14 Last updated: 2015-11-18Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Sound perception and design in multimodal environments
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Sound perception and design in multimodal environments
2015 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

This dissertation is about sound in context. Since sensory processing is inherently multimodal, research in sound is necessarily multidisciplinary. The present work has been guided by principles of systematicity, ecological validity, complementarity of  methods, and integration of science and art. The main tools to investigate the mediating relationship of people and environment through sound have been empiricism and psychophysics. Four of the seven included papers focus on perception. In paper A, urban soundscapes were reproduced in a 3D installation. Analysis of results from an experiment revealed correlations between acoustic features and physiological indicators of stress and relaxation. Paper B evaluated soundscapes of different type. Perceived quality was predicted not only by psychoacoustic descriptors but also personality traits. Sound reproduction quality was manipulated in paper D, causing two effects on source localisation which were explained by spatial and semantic crossmodal correspondences. Crossmodal correspondence was central in paper C, a study of colour association with music. A response interface employing CIE Lab colour space, a novelty in music emotion research, was developed. A mixed method approach supported an emotion mediation hypothesis, evidenced in regression models and participant interviews. Three papers focus on design. Field surveys and acoustic measurements were carried out in restaurants. Paper E charted relations between acoustic, physical, and perceptual features, focussing on designable elements and materials. This investigation was pursued in Paper F where a taxonomy of sound sources was developed. Analysis of questionnaire data revealed perceptual and crossmodal effects. Lastly, paper G discussed how crossmodal correspondences facilitated creation of meaning in music by infusing ecologically founded sonification parameters with visual and spatial metaphors. The seven papers constitute an investigation into how sound affects us, and what sound means to us.

Abstract [sv]

Denna doktorsavhandling handlar om ljud i sammanhang. Eftersom informationsbehandling genom sinnena alltid är multimodal så kräver ljudforskning en tvärvetenskaplig forskningsansats. Arbetet i denna avhandling har vägletts av principer såsom systematik, ekologisk validitet, samspel mellan metoder, och integration av vetenskap och konst. De viktigaste redskapen för att undersöka den ömsesidiga påverkan mellan människa och miljö genom ljud har varit empiri och psykofysik.Fyra artiklar handlar om perception. I artikel A återskapades urbana ljudlandskap i en 3D-ljudinstallation. Analys av experimentresultat avslöjade samband mellan akustiska mått och fysiologiska markörer av stress och avslappning.  Artikel B utvärderade olika typer av ljudlandskap. Upplevd kvalitet kunde prediceras inte bara av psykoakustiska mått utan även av personlighetsdrag. Ljudåtergivningskvalitet manipulerades i artikel D och orsakade två effekter på lokalisering av en ljudkälla vilka förklarades av rumslig och semantisk korsmodala kopplingar. Korsmodalitet var huvudpunkten i artikel C, en studie av färgassociation till musik. Ett användargränssnitt utvecklades som använder färgrymden CIE Lab, en nyhet i forskningfältet musik och känslor. En abduktiv metod stödde hypotesen att känslouttryck medierar korsmodala kopplingar, vilket framgick av regressionsmodeller och intervjuer med försökspersonerna.Tre artiklar handlar om design. Fältundersökningar och ljudmätningar utfördes i restauranger. Artikel E kartlade samband mellan akustiska, fysiska och perceptuella särdrag, med fokus på formbara element och material. Detta arbete fortsattes i artikel F varigenom en taxonomi av ljudkällor utvecklades. Analys av enkätdata avslöjade perceptuella och korsmodala effekter. Slutligen, artikel G diskuterade hur korsmodala kopplingar främjade meningsskapande i musik genom att ekologiskt motiverade sonifikationsparametrar samverkade med visuella och spatiala uttryck. De sju artiklarna utgör landmärken i avhandlingens utforskande av hur ljud påverkar oss, och vad ljud betyder för oss.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: KTH Royal Institute of Technology, 2015. 67 p.
TRITA-CSC-A, ISSN 1653-5723 ; 2015:17
sound, perception, design, multimodal, environment, soundscape, music, listening, crossmodal, psychoacoustics, psychophysiology, personality trait, emotion, appraisal, aesthetics, colour, correlation, regression, classification, sonification
National Category
Other Electrical Engineering, Electronic Engineering, Information Engineering Interaction Technologies Music Other Physics Topics Applied Psychology
Research subject
Speech and Music Communication
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-177271 (URN)978-91-7595-771-5 (ISBN)
Public defence
2015-12-11, Kollegiesalen, Brinellvägen 8, KTH, Stockholm, 10:00 (English)

QC 20151118

Available from: 2015-11-18 Created: 2015-11-17 Last updated: 2015-11-19Bibliographically approved

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