Been a while…

So it has terrible that I haven’t been blogging a while, but let us move on.

Our project involves the year one in BCT and we had three chance to record and experiment on their experience within the test. we had three stories

The Doves and the Hunter

The Traveler and the Purse

The Gnat and the Bull

in that order.

Each story is short and is self-contained with a meaning. I recorded me reading the story to replicate the what the final product should be. Each reading the people are prompted to discuss and like the mechanic in our proof of concept, there is an indicator (a coin) that travels around the table, in front of the year ones to travel around.

What we changed is how we asked the people after the reading.

The first experiment, we asked them to discuss and that is it. I vague open-ended question that allowed depth but there was one person that didn’t participate at all. From what I can perceive the person is shy. Although she saw the indicator moving around the table she still didn’t feel inclined enough to participate in the conversations. For the rest of the people participating in the experiment did converse well with depth.

The second experiment focussed on asking a much more specific question, what did you learn. Each person did partake with no one not speaking but there was something lacking. There was no depth in any of the three discussions, just one-word answers.

We modified the question for the first question to be specific, and the other two were open-ended questions. This is the golden ticket. The first question focussed on a specific question, which prompted each person to partake in quick short answers and makes them comfortable which opens them to answer more and have depth in their answers for the other two stories, which is the goal of our project.


Form of storytelling to be shared

One major component of our final product is to have some sort of story to be the central focus of the discussion with the theme of sharing and being within groups.

Story vs parable.

Story : noun – “… story is a sequence… a sequence of real or fictional events; or an account of suck a sequence…”

Parable : noun – “… parable is a short narrative illustrating a lesson (usually religious/moral)”

Parables are usually used as analogy to focus to the lesson that is present in the parable. Another key feature of a parable is that is short. Even though it is still up for debate, some say it can be as short as 8 seconds but can vary from people to people. Which can be a problem for our final project because we need the users to pay attention to the story as it needs to be discussed. So we made it a point that our stories not too long, nothing over a minute.

Story vs Parable – What’s the difference? (2013, August 17). Retrieved April 03, 2017, from
Cornish, David; Dukette, Dianne (2009). The Essential 20: Twenty Components of an Excellent Health Care Team. Pittsburgh, PA: RoseDog Books. pp. 72–73. ISBN 1-4349-9555-0. OCLC 721335045


Mic Directionality

There is the severe lack of internal microphone directionality specifications or any sort of descriptions. They always speak about the battery, the internet and other irrelevant phone specifications. It is very problematic to our project but there are workarounds it but before, that I want to talk about microphone directionality

There are many types of directional mics

A mic that picks up signals from the front and back. useful for interview situations

A mic that is better for the front and sides, can give more directionality in 3 degrees with a little signal coming from the back

Another mic that has three degrees of the signal with none coming from the 180 degrees, captures front and side well.

The ideal microphone for our final project with wide angle for signals to come from to determine the directionality of the person speaking. In terms of applications, this is the most useful one for us.

But like mentioned in the beginning of this post, many companies doesn’t post much about the strength of their mics. In the previous post, I found out that there are many variation in mics even from phones in the same model, as it isn’t needed to be beefed up like a studio mic.

This is a $5 directional microphone from the website above. Cheap with the sound sensitivity of -30dB which might seem short but it is only on a table and might be enough for a table discussion.

Technical data

Category Speech microphone
Transfer type Direct
Frequency response 100 – 20 000 Hz
Characteristics Cardioid
Features incl. pop filter
On/off switch No
Weight 34 g
Length 80 mm


  • Compact and lightweight (8 cm/34 g)
  • Integrated TRRS plug to connect with the headset socket
  • Fitted for primary camera or selfie mode
  • Integrated 3,5-mm headphone jack allows play-through of audio while recording
  • 1/2“ condenser capsulel, Polar pattern: Cardioid
  • Frequency range: 100 Hz – 20 kHz
  • Sensibility: 22 mV
  • Equivalent Noise Level: 20 dBA
  • Maximum SPL: 140 dB.

It has more details and magnitude more expensive compared to the other one but it has higher sensitivity and high sensitivity.

In terms of prices, we can leave it to the budget of colab and could provide microphone for this activity.


Highlights & details

What is a Directional Microphone? (n.d.). Retrieved from

Mic Sensitivity

I would use APA but it is just a discussion forum for electronics and people have vetted each others answer so I trust it enough to a certain degree.

The biggest problem smartphone microphones is that it has automatic gain control, active noise cancellation and other processing functions that having a mic sensitivity spec useless.

It also doesn’t help that there are large variation from phone to phone even in the same model  because that level of isn’t required for the normal use of a smart phone and could have up to 6dB of variance between them. Even if a phone’s microphone is run with test to determine the values want could potentially not have a uniform data set or consistent.

There are also difference in speaker mode, camera and video mode for the input signal.

Although all these things are not that important to our project, sensitivity of the mic is important in determining how loud or quiet a person when they are talking. It is for the best to use an external microphone with 360 capabilities to determine the location of people talking