Woot! Off to the AES Headphone Technology Conference!
In case you haven't noticed, headphones are undergoing a radical evolution. We audiophiles think of them as just another way to enjoy our music, but the rest of the world wants something more...much more. They want an immersive Pokemon hunting experience...or some such crap. They want to hear to call of the Poke from around the corner; they want language translation on the fly; they want to cancel the noisy bar but hear their name called when the table is ready. Yeah, the headphone world is changing rapidly...very, very rapidly.
So rapidly, in fact, that the Audio Engineering Society figured it's high time to get a bunch of headphone engineers together to swap thoughts and get a grip on what's the heck is going on and how the heck to address it. From the conference page introduction:
More than 300 million pairs of headphones were sold in 2015, and people are using headphones everywhere. The popularity of "smart and wearable" devices has driven developments in low-power processors and sensors that are enabling the augmentation of headphones with features more typically associated with hearing aids or smartphones. Therefore, this conference will focus on technologies for headphones with a special emphasis on the emerging fields of Mobile Spatial Audio, Personal Assistive Listening, and Augmented Reality. This conference will assemble scientists, developers, and practitioners who are involved in any head-worn hearing technology, be it in theory, technical design, application or evaluation. The conference will enable an interdisciplinary dialogue across the headphone and hearing aid industries.
Well geez, this sounds like something that I ought to be aware of...and I are aware...and I'm there! For the next few days I'll be attending and reporting on presentations of interest at the 2016 AES International Conference On Headphone Technology in Aalborg Denmark. It'll take me a week or so to complete the coverage, but I will try to update daily as I'm here.
Please have a look at the conference technical program and let me know if there's anything in particular you'd like me to focus on...but I will try to attend pretty much everything.