Monday, February 14, 2022

The Chinese translation: 

Human and Machine Hearing: The Meaning of Hearing Sound 

is now available at Amazon and other sellers.  I haven't seen one yet.  Please comment  here if you get one.

Saturday, February 27, 2021

The Japanese translation ("Human Ear Mechanical Ear...") is now out, available on Amazon and other booksellers

Professor Iku Nemoto and Associate Professor Keita Tanaka of Tokyo Denki University have done a great job (I hear).  They even translated the legends and axis labels in the figures and things like that.  See Tanaka's twitter blog for their comments.  

Saturday, April 27, 2019

More bugs, more apologies ...

... and some translations in progress. 

Japanese and Chinese translations are being worked on.  My Japanese translator, Professor Iku Nemoto, has been really great at digging into things that are unclear, or in some cases downright wrong.

The worst one is where I seem to have dropped some text between saying "The physical model of Liu and Neely (2009) ..." and proceeding to describe the model of Wen and Boahen (2003).  I'll work on reconstructing what I meant to say, and apologizing to the authors.

These are less important, but I wish I had got them right:

p.340 says "90 degrees at 1/32 of the sample rate (that is at 687 Hz…".  Should be 22050/32 = 689.0625, or just 689 Hz.

p.269 "the fluid moves down the scala tympani, ... and back down the scala vestibuli" – I got the scala names reversed here, though I had them right elsewhere.

Wednesday, August 29, 2018

Apologies to John Herschel

Sir John Herschel is my hero.  In 1839, the same year as the invention of the Daguerreotype, he coined the word "photography" and the photographic terms "positive" and "negative", invented the use of sodium thiosulfate (hyposulfite of soda as it known at the time, or hypo as I grew up with it) as a photographic "fixer", and made the first glass photographic negative.  During 1833–1838 he made a trek to Southern Africa to complete the panoramic survey of astronomical nebulae, a survey his father William Herschel had done well already for the northern hemisphere.  To celebrate his panoramic and photographic contributions, I proposed the name Herschel for the new Street View camera that replaces the one I helped design and build 10 years ago – and the team adopted it.

In his 1830 Preliminary Discourse on the Study of Natural Philosophy, Herschel had written on all aspects of science, including the bit on a time-domain explanation of harmony that I quoted in the book.

So I'm bummed that I somehow misspelled his name, and that my BibTeX file had the wrong century for the source (see the errata post).  The printed book has both 1831 and 1830 in its front pages; either one would have better than the 1930 that I used.  These errors are still there in my free 2018 corrected author's draft.  Apologies to Herschel.  Hopefully we'll get to a second printing and get this fixed.

Tuesday, February 27, 2018

PROSE Award – almost

The 2018 PROSE Award, in the Engineering & Technology category, goes to ... not my book.  But I got the "honorable mention" in that category.  See winners – congrats to Prof. Singh of Texas A&M, the first college I enrolled in.

Tuesday, January 2, 2018

Free Online PDF Version

Happy New Year!  My "author's draft" final manuscript, with corrections of all errata found in 2017, is now freely available as a PDF, from my web site. Of course, I'd still want you to buy the hardcover, too, if you like it.

Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Discounts again

For whatever reason, prices are down again.  Amazon at $68.23Barnes & Noble at $69.15.  Book Depository at $68.22 with free shipping worldwide.  And you can still get 20% off at the publisher with code LYON2017 (that's $64 or £44, plus shipping).

Still looking for more reviews on any site where you might have bought one, please.

Update: those discounts didn't last; but maybe they'll be back.

Nov. 9 update – Amazon's and Book Depository's lowest price yet:  $62.05.

Jan. 1 update – The publisher has sent an updated code good for 20% off through 2018: [not surprisingly] LYON2018 at checkout at their UK or US site.  Amazon's price is only 10% off today.

Jan. 30 update – New low: 30% off at Amazon: $56.36

March 2018 update – New low: 32% off at Amazon: $54.63

Friday, September 8, 2017

Saturday, July 22, 2017

CARFAC cochlear model in Python

AndrĂ© van Schaik has implemented the CARFAC cochlear model in iPython Jupyter notebooks, on Github, complementing the C++ and Matlab versions.  Check it out.

Sunday, July 16, 2017

Prices vary

The price on Amazon moves up and down, seemingly randomly.  See the various links in previous posts, for them and other sellers that might have good deals in your part of the world.

What's certain is that the publisher will give you 20% off (of the $79.99 in the USA or the £ 54.99 in the UK, if you use the code LYON2017 at checkout, through 2017.  But there will be some shipping cost and tax, so compare.  Let us know what you find, and please do review it wherever you buy it.

Tuesday, July 4, 2017

The "Kindle Companion" free PDF

I've made a PDF of all the figures and boxes, which can be a useful companion if you're reading the text on an e-reader, for example.  Feel free to use, but keep in mind that it's copyrighted, so please don't redistribute; point people here to get it.

Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Five-star reviews

You can tell who my friends are:  check out the nice 5-star reviews on Amazon

Reviewer Jordan Cohen is referenced in the book as probably the first to show a big improvement in speech recognition performance by moving to a more auditory front-end, at IBM in the 80s (after he turned down my job offer that he alludes to in his review). 

Reviewer Lloyd Watts did a lot of great work on cochlear modeling, as a grad student at Caltech, and later founded Audience to apply those ideas to valuable machine hearing problems such as noise suppression in mobile phones; I reference a number of his results, and use one of his figures.  Thanks, guys!

Of course, big thanks also to friends Roy Patterson, Bill Yost, and Dan Levitin, who wrote the "advance praise" blurbs on the back cover, and who have encouraged this line of work for decades.

More reviews, wherever you got the book, are good for me, for the field, and for the market.  Thanks, readers!

Monday, June 19, 2017


  • First bug report, by Erick Gallun: in first sentence of section 6.2, "to an output function to time" should be "to an output function of time." He gets the first bug bounty dollar, and my thanks (note that I edited this post after he commented below; hope that's not confusing).
  • Jeff Rector earns a dollar for spotting "simultaeous", which should be "simultaneous", in section 4.5, page 55. 
  • Tomek Maka earns a buck for the misformatted equation (paren in wrong place) in the box "Example: Delay Lines and Moving-Average Filters" in chapter 12, page 220.  Should be H(s)=\frac{Y(s)}{X(s)}=\exp(-sT). 
  • Tomek Maka finds one more stray paren:  "h(t))" has an extra close paren, middle equation on page 123.
  • Responding to my challenge to readers on section 17.2, AndrĂ© van Schaik reported the typo on page 311, second paragraph, where "a sampling term" should be "a damping term".
  • Two bugs from Wan-Teh's comment below: 
    • P.128, Sec. 7.5: In the second-to-last equation on this page: H(z)X(z) = Z{h(k) * x(k)} should have square brackets for indices, as H(z)X(z) = Z{h[k] * x[k]}.  
    • P. 132, Sec. 7.7: In the box "Detail: Zeros at the Origin", the last paragraph says: "s-domain points that would map to z = 0 are infinitely far to the right side in the s plane" – "right" should be changed to "left".
  • Roy Patterson reports a flubbed wording in the last paragraph of Chapter 20, p. 354: "continue to get away with ignore" should be "continue to ignore", or possibly "continue to get away with ignoring".  I'll add a dollar to the envelope I'm taking to give him in Cambridge.
  • A few errors and nits that I've found myself, that I'll fix in a later printing if I can.
    • Section 2.2 p. 26 "introduced below as" should really refer to a section: "introduced in section 2.5 as".
    • Section 2.3 p. 27 "as "Cooper et al. (2008) summarizes", should use the plural verb "summarize" (because in my style, I interpret the subject here as the authors, plural, not the paper, singular).
    • Figure 3.4. The dotted lines connecting the parts of the figure are too light to see.
    • Before the lower box on p. 224, "we studies" should be "we studied".
    • In the Physics Connection box on p. 228, "nonmoving sinusoidal spatial envelopes" should be singular.
    • In the box "On Quasi-Linear Filters" on p.240, "auditory filters models" should be "auditory filter models".
    • Figure 16.6 caption refers to "the middle damping" where it should say "the lowest damping"; or I could change the figure to match the caption.
    • Section 18.3, p. 328, "input to the ICS." should be "input to the IHCs."
    • In the box "History Connection: From IPD to ITD", p. 382, Figure 22.1 and caption have been placed badly, between the sentence introducing a quote and the quote.
    • Figure 25.1 caption, p. 443, "possbiility" should be "possibility".
I expect we'll find more.  Respond here or email me.

Here are bugs found in 2018, after the corrected PDF was out:

  • Binary logarithmss has an extra "s"; Chapter 3, box The Mathematics of Logarithms and Power Laws, second paragraph (p.34 in hardback); reported by Ben Caswell-Midwinter
  • Hershel is a misspelling of Herschel, and the Herschel 1930 ref should be 1830, in section 4.8 (p.67 in hardback).

Friday, June 16, 2017

Available in "UK and Europe"

Human and Machine Hearing is now launching in Europe.  Publisher says "Cambridge University Press is delighted to confirm that Human and Machine Hearing will publish on 15 June 2017 in the UK and Europe."

  • Book Depository has a great price (£51.05, €58.38, $65.37), all currencies, and free shipping worldwide.
  • has it for £48.99 (that's 11% off the £54.99 list price).  June 17 update: the discount appears to have gone away; it's now listed at full price; keep an eye on it.
  • Blackwell's has it at £48.99 with free UK delivery.
  • has a modest discount, to match and at EUR 66.99; looks expensive.
  • Cambridge University Press is offering a 20% discount at their UK site; use discount code LYON2017 at checkout; this work for pounds and dollars – haven't tried Euros.
  • I don't know what other book sellers are big in Europe; let me know. 

Monday, May 22, 2017

Discounts available

Some good deals off the book's $79.99 list price as of May 22:   

    • Amazon has dropped the price to $69.86.
    • Barnes and Noble has it for $68.81.
    • Use code LYON2017 at checkout to get 20% off (making it $63.99) at Cambridge University Press.
    • Google Books has a free preview drawn from Parts I & II
    • If you are interested in the book for a course, contact providing details and ask for a free examination copy; let me know and I'll bug them for you.
    Let me know if you are able to get it outside the US or have other good deals to report.
      May 26 update:  Amazon is following Barnes&Noble with daily price drops.  Now both at $65.75.
      May 28 update:  B&N continues to drop the price, a dollar per day, with Amazon following.  Now $63.77!
      June 10 update:  Amazon didn't quite follow B&N down to $62.77, but compromised at $63.13; now B&N is on the way back up – will Amazon follow?

      Monday, May 8, 2017

      It ships!

      The book is shipping!  I got my first copies Friday, and Amazon pre-orders are expected to be delivered tomorrow.  It looks and feels great – hefty at nearly 600 pages, but not too fat.

      Want a discount?  Email me.  Cambridge has a code good for 20% off (but maybe with Amazon's price and free shipping, you're as well off ordering there).  I look forward to signing copies for anyone who gets one.

      I've found a few minor bugs already. I'm still offering $1 per bug reported.  I'll start an errata list soon.

      And if you'd  like to consider the book for a course, the publisher might send you a free examination copy.  Let me know if interested.

      Saturday, January 14, 2017

      Coming soon:

      Seven years in the making, my book:
      Human and Machine Hearing: Extracting Meaning from Sound,
      from Cambridge University Press, is "on press" and scheduled to be available by the end of April 2017.

      Pre-order or buy:
      from Cambridge University Press
      from Amazon
      from Target

      This site – – will host errata, links to code, this blog, etc.

      Included in Part III of the book is a detailed description of the CARFAC (Cascade of Asymmetric Resonators with Fast-Acting Compression) cochlea model, corresponding to the open-source Matlab and C++ implementations on github.