2021 in numbers

Hi everyone,

One year more has passed and here we are with our classic year in numbers post in which we give you some statistics about last year’s Freesound activity. We start by showing some general statistics similar to those shown in previous years’ posts, and also extend a bit on a specific topic which, in this year’s post, is about a very commonly asked question: how much disk space do all the sounds in Freesound take?. But let’s start at the beginning. The number of new sounds uploaded during 2020 was…

56,783 new sounds!

which corresponds to…

1075 hours of audio!

About 10,000 more sounds were uploaded in 2021 than in 2020 and 300 more hours of audio! In last year’s post you’ll see that the increase of sounds was not that high, and the average duration of the sounds had significantly decreased (most probably due to the upload of a large short sounds collection), but this year we’re back to the usual average sound duration (which is 66 seconds, by the way), and therefore the hours of audio is big again. We’ve never had this many sounds uploaded in a single year!

What about the license distribution for these 56k newly uploaded sounds? Here it is:

The distribution has shifted a bit compared to previous years’ distribution and we can see that the use of CC-BY has increased, in detriment of CC-BY-NC and CC0. We will see in the future if this consolidates into a trend, but it is most probably just part of the yearly variability in the usage of licenses.

With the new additions from 2021, Freesound now currently hosts an amazing total of 536,763 sounds, for a total audio length of 345 days and 22 hours. Here is the evolution of the total number of sounds since the beginning of Freesound, and our prediction for the future:

As you’ll remember, in May 2021 we reached 500k sounds, and if our prediction is accurate we should be very close to 600k by the end of 2022.

Here is a tag cloud of the tags of the sounds uploaded during 2021:

The usual big tags as still big (field-recording, music, loop, synth, …), but tags like nature, ambience, hand, and drum seem to be much bigger this year when compared to the past year. The exceptional high usage of the tags hand and drum seems to be because of the contributions by stoltingmediagroup, who has uploaded more than 11k sounds this year (see below), including various packs of hand percussion instruments and drum sounds. The increased usage of the tags nature and ambience is probably due to the contributions by klankbeeld, who has also uploaded many more sounds than usual this year. Here are some examples of these sounds uploaded by stoltingmediagroup and klankbeeld:

Do you want to see a chart of the users who have contributed more sounds in 2021? Here it is:

Username# uploaded soundsUsernameuploaded time (hours)

Thanks everyone (not only those appearing in the table) for all the contributions! It is absolutely incredible to see that many new and high-quality sounds being uploaded every year.

And what about downloads? The number of sound downloads (including packs) during 2021 was…


As you can see in the plot below, that number is closer to 2019 than to 2020, when there was a significant increase of downloads (related to the increase of visitors due to COVID-19 lockdowns). All in all, users have downloaded more than 191M sounds and packs from Freesound!

For those curious about what is people searching for in Freesound, here is the cloud of query terms that are used by Freesound users when searching for sounds:

As opposed to the tag cloud that we showed before which can be influenced by particular actions like a user uploading a large collection of sounds, the cloud of query terms rarely changes as it is hard to influence the statistics of the millions of queries made every year. The top 10 queries include: wind, rain, music, explosion, piano, footsteps, birds, whoosh, woosh and fire.

Some extra general statistics: In 2021, you sent 43k messages, wrote 1.9k forum posts and made 63k sound comments. All numbers have gone up significantly with the exception of sound comments, which is very similar to last year (but that had a big increase last year). Again, very similar numbers to those of 2018. The number of sounds ratings has also been quite high, 208k sound ratings in 2021. This is a bit less than in 2020, but 2020 had a huge increase compared to 2019 so we’re doing very well. Last year we observed an increased activity in Freesound which we attributed to the increased visitors due to COVID-19 lockdowns. This year we see that some indicators are getting back to normal but we are still reporting very high numbers which makes us thing that many of the users that joined last year must have liked Freesound and stayed.

Finally, to conclude this blog post we would like to put our focus onto the disk usage of Freesound over the years. This is a question that we get often: how much disk space do you need to store all Freesound sounds? Well, here are some answers! Below you’ll see two plots, the first one showing the new disk space that is taken every year (that is to say, the amount of extra Gigabytes that we need every year to store the newly uploaded sounds and related files). The second one shows accumulated statistics for the total disk space taken by Freesound sounds and related files. The related files include the images that we generate for the sounds, the output of our audio analysis and the file previews that are used by the sound players in the website.

As of today, all Freesound sounds and related files take about 7 Terabytes of data. Surprised? Normally people say that they thought it would have been a lot more! But actually this is quite a lot πŸ™‚ Note that many uploaded sounds are very short, and also that some are uploaded in compressed formats. So even if we’re hosting more than half a million sounds, the requirements in terms of disk space are not crazy. This can be seen as all the information that has been uploaded to Freesound. If we look however at the amount of information that we transfer every day mostly in the form of downloads, we see that we transfer around 1 Terabyte per day to users downloading sounds, packs and playing sounds from the browser. Oh wow!

That’s it for 2021 in numbers post! Thanks for reading and we hope you enjoy a 2022 full of sounds πŸ™‚

frederic, on behalf of the Freesound Team

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New Freesound interface public beta!

Hi everyone,

Finally! As some of you will know, we have been mostly silently working on a new UI for Freesound during the last years. Even though it is not completely finished yet, we are extremely happy to announce that, from today,  you can start using the new beta UI and give us some feedback so we can make it better, finish it, and eventually replace the current UI.

Just as a brief bit of context, in mid 2017 we contacted product designer Marc Ruaix and invited him to design a new Freesound UI to give it a fresher look. What initially was only going to be a small update of the UI, ended up becoming a full rebuild of the Freesound frontend and parts of the backend. We have now ported most of Freesound pages to the new UI and now ready to open it for for beta testing. While we call the current UI (now old!)Β Nightingale (NG), the new UI is calledΒ Beast Whoosh (BW). We expect to continue working in the new UI during the first half of 2022, porting the missing pages and incorporating your feedback, andΒ we expect to completely replace NG with BW at some point in 2022.

Do you want to participate in the beta? Everyone can do it, right now! You’ll find instructions in this forum post. Please read the instructions carefully, and keep in mind that you’ll most likely find some things not working as expected. Please use this forum to provide feedback.

We hope you enjoy Freesound with the new fresher look. I’ve been already using it for a while and I’m really enjoying it πŸ™‚ Also, let me take this opportunity to wish you all a happy new year!!!

on behalf of the Freesound Team

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Online workshop on composition with Freesound

The Music Technology Group and Phonos will offer the workshop ?Composing with Freesound? with Laura Llaneli & Frederic Font, from 12 to 16 July 2021 online.

In this workshop, participants will explore in depth the possibilities of Freesound as a creative tool for music composition and sound design. The workshop will cover the basics of free licenses, downloading sounds, recording, editing and uploading sounds, as well as advanced features unleashed with the Freesound API, including text and similarity advanced searches. Also, the workshop will show the potential of the Freesound API with applied examples in audio mosaicing and loop generations and cover other advanced applications towards machine intelligence. Sessions explaining theoretical concepts will be followed by sound and music composition labs. At the end of the week, students working in groups are expected to prepare a radio show using Freesound content, that will be aired on teslaFM during the summer.

Duration of the workshop: 15 hours (Mon. to Fri. 14?17h CET)

Format: Online (zoom + slack)

Language: English

More information and registration: https://www.upf.edu/web/phonos/workshops#freesound

This is one of the workshops of the Phonos Summer Camp, a series of workshops on music and technology for musicians, composers and creators in general.

Find more information on the Phonos Summer Camp here: https://www.upf.edu/web/phonos/workshops

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Issues with the search server [Fixed]

[EDIT: we’ve been able to stop some bots that were abusing the Freesound search and now search is working for everyone again. We’re implementing some measures to stop this from happening again.]

Hi everyone,

Yesterday we had some issues with the search server that were fixed at some point, but last night the issues started again and still persist. We’ll work to fix these as soon as possible and let you know when done. Thanks for your understanding!

Meanwhile you can still to some browsing by navigating user profiles and/or using the random sound feature: https://freesound.org/browse/random/ πŸ™‚


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We just reached 500k sounds… and Freesound got faster!

Hi everyone,

In our recent 2020 in numbers blog post we predicted that we would reach 500k sound uploads at some point in 2021 and… it has just happened! At some point during the past weekend, the number of sounds which are available for download in Freesound has surpassed half a million. Note that by sounds which are available for download we mean sounds that have been already moderated and approved, and here I am not counting sounds that were deleted in the past. Huge congratulations to the whole Freesound community! This is a remarkable achievement, and we could have not imagined at the beginning of Freesound that one day it would host more than 500k Creative Commons sounds uploaded by thousands of people around the world (and downloaded by millions!).

To celebrate this achievement, we are also very happy to say that, as part of the changes in the Freesound infrastructure we’re making these weeks, we’ve managed to significantly increase Freesound speed, including downloading speed. In fact, our monitoring tools indicate that Freesound is now very fast, and our subjective experience using the website also says so. We have just barely started all the infrastructure changes that we’ll carry out in the next months, so many things still need to be changed and improved and you can expect some issues here and there. But the most processing intensive part of Freesound has already been moved to a new environment of the University IT infrastructure that we can scale much easily and will allow us to adapt much better to the future needs of Freesound. Hurray!

We could not be happier to bring you these news πŸ™‚
We hope you enjoy browsing more than 500k Creative Commons sounds with the new super-fast Freesound!

frederic, on behalf of the Freesound Team

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Community update April 2021

Hi everyone,

Welcome to a new community update post! If you remember in the last community update post (from December 2020), we mentioned that, among other things, in 2021 we’d be spending efforts in migrating Freesound to a new, faster and more scalable infrastructure, and in advancing the implementation of the new Freesound UI. Well, we’ve been working very hard in these two fronts for the first months of 2021, and will continue to do so in the coming months. Here is an update about the things that have been happening:

  • Migration to new infrastructure: during the last year, we’ve experienced increasing page load times and general slowdowns which, in some moments, made Freesound hardly usable. This has been due to the increase of traffic and also because of limitations of Freesound’s shared infrastructure. In the last weeks, we’ve finally been able to start migrating some of the Freesound services to a new infrastructure which will allow us to scale better. The migration is still a work in progress and will still take several weeks to be fully completed, but you should have already noticed some significant speed improvements in page loads. We’re still having slowdowns (and will continue to happen in the next weeks), but in general Freesound has been much faster this week than what it was the past week and it will keep getting better. We also have planned improvements that will increase download and upload speeds and that will be applied shortly. We’ll keep you posted through this community updates!
  • New UI: the development of the new UI is also advancing at a great speed. The most important Freesound pages (front page, search, user profile, sound page, pack page) have already been implemented and they look awesome. Also while implementing the new pages we took the time of adding some nice small new features that you’ll like. We hope to start a sort of public beta as soon as the few important remaining pages are implemented, most probably before summer. Aaaaand just in case you don’t believe us because we’ve been promising this for so long, below you’ll find a screenshot of the user profile of one of Freesound classic users πŸ™‚

And that?s it for now, we’re very excited with all the improvements that we’ll be able to bring to Freesound this year πŸ™‚

the Freesound Team

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Sustainability Report 2020

Dear Freesounders,

Welcome to our 2020 Sustainability Report! Here we give an update on how 2020 went for Freesound in terms of sustainability, and present our plans for 2021. You’ll see that most of the information is very similar to previous years’ posts, but still, we think that this will be interesting for you. As usual, the report is split in a number of sections discussing specific aspects that contribute to the sustainability of Freesound, and a final section with a summary, conclusions and future perspectives.

Sound uploads

Sound uploads are an essential part of the sustainability of Freesound. Now that Freesound is reaching 500k sound uploads, it becomes even clearer its immense value, making Freesound an extremely useful resource, attracting many new users every year (both downloaders and uploaders) and certifying the world-wide impact of the Freesound website. Such a big impact is also a great motivation for the research we (and others) carry out around Freesound, and for helping us obtain funding to support it. In 2020, 46,441 new sounds were uploaded. That number is quite similar to previous years (check the evolution of total number of sounds uploaded from the 2020 in numbers blog post). Other related statistics of activity around sounds (ratings, comments, posts) also feature numbers similar to previous years. All in all, we can conclude that Freesound follows a stable (and healthy!) trend in terms of sound uploads.

User donations

In terms of user donations, 2020 has seen a significant increase with respect to 2019. We explained in our 2020 in numbers post that in 2020 the donations increased by around 30%, and that this number correlated very well with the increase of daily visitors that we had right after the COVID19 lock-downs that happened around the world. In 2020, we received 8149 donations (2302 more than in 2019), totaling 69,000? (around 21,000? more than in 2019). These are extremely good news for us. On the one hand, this consolidates the donations model that we introduced in 2017. On the other hand, this shows that Freesound has been a specially useful resource in those strange pandemic times. We thank everyone who donated to Freesound. This is a very important pillar for the sustainability of Freesound and is allowing us to invest more efforts into its maintenance and further development. Most of the development efforts carried out with resources coming from user donations were outlined in the recent December 2020 Community Update post. Due to the increase of donations in 2020, we will be able to boost our development efforts in 2021.

Contribution from UPF

Freesound is an initiative of the?Music Technology Group, a research group of the?Universitat Pompeu Fabra?(UPF) in Barcelona, Spain. In 2020, the UPF contributed to Freesound similarly to previous years. UPF provides the necessary IT infrastructure and basic maintenance (15 servers, 4 TB monthly data bandwidth, IT support staff). As we calculated for the past edition of the sustainability report, the expected cost of such infrastructure if Freesound was hosted in external services (such as Amazon Web services or similar), would be over 20,000?/year (only for hosting costs). Researchers from the university also dedicate time to Freesound related activities (either research, development or administration) and are paid by the university. In 2021, we plan to move all our servers to a new infrastructure also provided by UPF. This should allow us to deploy a much faster and stable Freesound, and solve some of the availability and speed issues we’ve been experiencing in the last year. As you can see, the contribution from UPF is huge, and it is only thanks to the combination of the different aspects discussed in this post that Freesound is sustainable.

Contribution from research grants

Research is at the very core of the Freesound philosophy and, in fact, it is where it all started. We have carried out lots of research activities around Freesound (see some details below), but in 2020 we did not get any new big research grant with a primary role for Freesound (like the AudioCommons project that we coordinated a few-years ago). However, we recently received a 36,000$ grant from the Grant for the Web call to experiment with the application of Web Monetization technologies in the Freesound Licensing project that we’re starting and discussed in a previous blog post. This is funding for development of a prototype, and so it’s not like the projects that we normally do, but we still consider it a research grant. If you’re interested in learning about the research that happens around Freesound (i.e. using Freesound data) not only at the MTG but also around the world, be sure to check the papers section of the Freesound Labs website. But, summarizing, the main research activities that we carried out in 2020 in relation to Freesound are:

  • Further development of the FSD50k dataset and publication.
  • Further development and maintenance of Essentia, the audio analysis library that powers Freesound sound analysis.
  • Research on methods for automatically classifying audio events.
  • Research on the analysis of urban soundscape sounds from Barcelona.
  • Further research on clustering methods to be potentially applied to Freesound search results. This is getting much closer to release now.

Commercial usage of the Freesound API

Freesound has an API endpoint which allows third parties to develop applications that incorporate Freesound content. Usage of this API is free for non-commercial purposes, while commercial use of the API requires a commercial license. In this way we make sure that commercial applications using Freesound also contribute back to the community. Note that this is independent from the license of the sounds themselves, which need to be respected regardless of the API usage agreement. In 2020 we slightly increased the number of license agreements and the income they generate (~3,000?). We spent this money in the same development efforts described in the?User donations?section above. We’ve observed growing interest for the API so we expect this number to grow in 2021.

Summary and perspectives for 2021

As you can see, in 2020 we improved, in terms of sustainability, compared with previous years. This was been mainly due to the increase in user donations. Thanks to that, we have already started spending more efforts in Freesound development and that will allow us to greatly improve the platform during this year. Freesound is more sustainable than ever, and we have plans to further consolidate our model with the addition of the Freesound Licensing sister-project (which should advance considerably during 2021).

We?d like to finish this post by saying thank you to everyone who contributed to Freesound during 2020, in particular to those who donated and those who uploaded and moderated sounds. We?ll let you know how things go next year in the 2021?s sustainability report.

frederic, on behalf of the Freesound Team

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2020 in numbers

Hi everyone,

Welcome again to our traditional year in numbers post in which we give you some statistics about last year’s Freesound activity. As usual, we will show some general statistics similar to those shown in previous years’ posts, and also extend a bit on a specific topic which, in this year’s post, is about… you guessed it… COVID19 and Freesound! But let’s start at the beginning. The number of new sounds uploaded during 2020 was…

46,441 new sounds!

which corresponds to…

772 hours of audio!

That is roughly 5,000 more sounds than 2019, but 30 hours less of audio. This can be explained because the average sound is about 8 seconds shorter compared to sounds uploaded in 2019. I have an idea about why this might be the case, I’ll let you know below.

What about the license distribution for these 46k newly uploaded sounds? Here it is:

Again, this is similar to previous years distribution, and Creative Commons 0 is still by far the most used license. However, the percentage of CC-BY-NC has increased a bit with respect to previous years. We’ll see in coming years if this is indeed a tendency or just normal variations.

With the new additions from 2020, Freesound now currently hosts an amazing total of 483,213 sounds. 🎉 Here is the evolution of the total number of sounds since the beginning of Freesound, and our prediction for the future:

In 2019, our prediction for the number of sounds showed that we would reach the 500k mark at some point in 2020. As you can see we are very close to the 500k mark but we’re still not there. However this was to be expected because, as I explained in previous year post, our prediction was biased by the upload of large sample libraries in previous years.

The topics of the newly uploaded sounds from 2020 can be summarised with the following tag cloud:

The tag cloud is again very similar to last years’ one, with the big tags (field-recording, ambient, synth, music, loop, effect, …) remaining unchanged. However the interesting thing is to look into the the tags that come after those big ones. Last year I found a big number of sounds being uploaded as part of some assignment in an educational programme in The Czech Republic. This year however, the unusually big tags are yamaha-cs80 and cs80 (and some others related to this). This is because user mogigrumbles uploaded a collection of 1,800 samples of the almighty Yamaha CS80 polyphonic analogue synthesiser introduced in mid 70s. Thank you! I think this is the reason why we see the average sound duration to be shorter this year. The CS80 collection of 4 second long samples seems to be affecting our general statistics. And this is actually interesting because it means that, even if Freesound is huge, individual contributions can still make a big impact on the community.

Here are a few sound examples from the aforementioned sound collection:

And now to another classic statistic from this series of posts: to listen to the whole Freesound recordings would now require 302 days and 20 hours of your life. If any of you is planning on taking a sabbatical year to listen to all Freesound, be ready for a year full of wind, explosions, birds, synthesisers and loops! Ah, and you’ll still get 2-months of vacation after πŸ™‚

Also, those planning a sabbatical, you can take the opportunity to record many sounds so that next year you might enter the rankings of uploaders:

Username# uploaded soundsUsernameuploaded time (hours)

Thanks everyone for all the contributions, you’re truly making the world a better place upload after upload!

And what about downloads? The number of sound downloads (including packs) during 2020 was…


That’s, again, a new record, 1.7M more downloads than last year:

All in all, users have downloaded more than 171M sounds and packs from Freesound! Here is the cloud of query terms that are used by Freesound users when searching for sounds:

It does not really change from year to year, but it is always nice to see these word clouds right? wind, music, explosion, rain, birds, fire, that’s what people need!

Some extra general statistics: In 2020, you sent 22k messages, wrote 1.1k forum posts and made 65k sound comments (18k more than last year!). Again, very similar numbers to those of 2018. The good news is that sound ratings maintain the increasing tendency of last years, with a total of 214k sound ratings in 2020, 45k more than last year. This is really great! In fact, what all of this seems to indicate is that, even though the number of sound uploads is similar to last year, it looks like there has been more activity around the sounds (ratings, comments, downloads…). I wonder if that is because, for some reason, this year Freesound has had more “casual” visitors. And well, could maybe this be a consequence of COVID19 and lockdowns? Let’s dig into that!

In the plot below you’ll see a comparison of the number of Freesound visitors per month in the last 4 years:

As you can see, in 2020 there have been significantly more visitors than in the previous years, specially during the – almost worldwide – lockdown periods of Spring and Autumn. This makes sense, because some people might all of a sudden have found themselves with more free time and decided to spend it on Freesound. In those cases, we could not be happier to have been able to provide a service in these complicated times πŸ™‚ Furthermore, if we look at the number of donations, we also see that this year we got ~30% more donations than the previous year, which correlates very well with the increase of visitors and suggests that people have found Freesound to be a useful resource for them. Let me take this opportunity to thank again everyone who donates to Freesound and, in general, to everyone who makes it possible!

2020 developed in rather unexpected ways for many people around the world, and 2021 seems to be full of uncertanity as well. However, looking at our stats, we can be quite confident that Freesound will remain strong and that, at some point during 2021, we will definitely surpass the 500k uploaded sounds mark! That’s it for this year’s post. Thanks for reading and we hope you enjoy a 2021 full of sounds πŸ™‚

frederic, on behalf of the Freesound Team

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Community update December 2020

Hi everyone,

Welcome to a new community update post! We just realised that we didn’t do any community update posts for the last year πŸ™ However, we’ve had some activity in the blog through the guest blog posts (and we’d like to give thanks to the authors!). And well, what a year 2020 has been! Surely not the best of all times. In any case, time has come for a new update about how things are going in the Freesound world. Here is a summary of the things we’ve been working on during the last months and some plans for 2021:

  • Bug fixes, general maintenance and software updates: as usual, lots of work that happen without any glory but that are necessary to keep Freesound up and running.
  • New infrastructure: some of you will have noticed that the servers have been misbehaving a little recently, making the upload of large files quite difficult and generating some general slowdowns. The fact is that Freesound continues to grow and our current infrastructure is not easily scalable. In 2021 we’ll start to move Freesound to a new infrastructure that should allow us to scale much better and hopefully get rid of the performance problems we’ve been having this year.
  • New frontend: We’ve slowly been working on the new interface, but now we have a developer working exclusively on the implementation of the new frontend and we’re finally advancing at a good speed. If we are able to keep working at the same speed, I think it is safe to say that we can expect the new frontend to be finished during the first half of 2021 πŸ™‚
  • New features: we’re also working on new features, and have so many ideas in mind! Together with the new interface, we expect to release a new feature that will perform automatic clustering of search results based on sound similarity. This will provide an alternative facet with which to explore search results and find the sound you’re looking for (maybe that other sound that you were not really looking for but sounds similar and is actually amazing!)

In addition to all of the above, we would like to announce that Freesound has been awarded a Grant for the Web award which will provide us with some funds to explore ideas related to a Freesound-sister project that we call Freesound Licensing. The idea of Freesound Licensing is to provide a service to Freesound uploaders that will allow them to re-license the sounds to 3rd parties that need to use the sounds under terms not allowed by the original Creative Commons licenses. The goal is to provide a solution to the typical problem of someone wanting to use a CC-BY-NC sound from Freesound in a commercial project. Freesound Licensing will mediate between that someone and the sound author to generate a new license in exchange for a payment. This will benefit both uploaders and downloaders, but also, by keeping a small share of the license payments, Freesound Licensing will contribute to the sustainability of Freesound. More news regarding this project will come during 2021.

And that’s it for now, happy new year to everyone!

the Freesound Team

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SIAS project: Sound Art in Colombia

[Guest Blog post by?Jorge Mario D?az Matajira, director of the SIAS project]

SIAS stands for ?Information System about Sound Art in Colombia? (from the spanish ?Sistema de Informaci?n sobre el Arte Sonoro en Colombia?). SIAS (http://uan.sainethost.com/)  is a project that studies sound art and its cultural development in Colombia. This project was born as a research of the Master’s program in Sound Art (MAS) of the Faculty of Arts of the Universidad Antonio Nari?o (UAN), based in Bogot?, and due to internal calls from the Institution and its Vice President Department for Science, Technology and Innovation (VCTI). An important collaborator of this project has been the Pontificia Universidad Javeriana (PUJ), in particular the Industrial Design program. SIAS uses Freesound to host and share some of the sounds recorded within the project.

In 2016, a first stage of research was carried out which consisted in characterizing the state of the art of the artistic productions made in Colombia since the 1990s classified as Sound Art. During this process, we collected detailed information about more than 1000 works related to sound, and made 32 interviews to different sound artists who are present in the most relevant artistic circuits of the country, identifying the multiple conceptions of sound art and its relationship with experimental music.

Because the project gathered enough information, we decided to continue with a second stage to create an open information system accessible to the public interested in the field of study. Thus, we established a plan to design, develop and implement a prototype information system about Sound Art in Colombia, as an academic and technological tool for information management. This stage was expanded to the following lines of work: 

  • first, a large database with information about works and artists was created, including information about their circulation, creation, research and education; 
  • second, the creation of a catalog (still in development), which visualizes and disseminates the works of sound art, from a component of joint creation with the artists; 
  • third, the creation of an interactive Colombian sound map allowing to look at  the city as an object of study based on listening. This last line of work has been taking advantage of the Freesound platform for the classification, organization and analysis of the soundscape.

Our study of the soundscape has been developing its own methodology through immersion in the city, listening, recording, classifying and analyzing sounds. We use the term sound object (from a Schaefferian perspective) to designate audio recordings that do not exceed 10 seconds, and the term soundscape to designate recordings and sound routes that exceed 10 seconds. We developed an instrument to collect data that allows the basic analysis and classification of each object and soundscape. It was structured based on listening as a mode of knowledge, taking as a reference the types of listening defined by Pierre Schaeffer and Michel Chion: reduced, causal and semantic listening.

We have taken advantage of the visualization of the sound maps from the platform My Maps where we establish routes and categories that classify the sound objects according to the perspective of the landscape recorders. In this way, the categories can vary between animals, machines, voices, background music, vehicles, etc. The following figure shows an example of our soundscape work shown in a sound map:

Figure 1: General view of the sound map

The purple lines represent the recorded sound routes with a duration greater than 10 seconds (what we denominate soundscapes). Along these routes, you can see icons of different colors, which represent sound objects. On the left side, there is the name of the map with its description: in this case, the city of Bucaramanga, Colombia; below is a list with the exact names of each of the colored icons (sound objects) and the respective categories that classify the sounds on the map.

Figure 2: View over icons or routes

In this other figure, it is shown that when clicking on each of the colored icons or the routes, a popup appears and shows the name of the sound and the Freesound URL so that the sound record can be listened to (with all the features that the Freesound provides). Here are some maps from Palomino, Bogot?, Ipiales and Pasto that you can check.

The SIAS project, from its soundscape line of work, has registered more than 30 maps of different cities in Colombia: Bogot?, Bucaramanga, Pasto, Palomino, Palmira and Ipiales. The sounds from these maps are uploaded as packs in Freesound, and include a  approximately 1273 sounds. All sounds are uploaded under the proyectosonidosias user account. Here you can find the sound packs organized by city.

It is worth mentioning that the soundscape line of research also works from three fronts: the first, takes recordings of city-based sound environments as a study object. Second, it considers a heritage perspective which works on the hypothesis that there are sounds that could be valued by the community, both in the field of sound art and cultural heritage. Thus, not only places cataloged as national cultural heritage are valued, but other places not cataloged as such but that its context has that valuation potential given by communities that recognize it. The last sub-line of work consists in the recording of objects that we call sound artifacts, which highlights the sound artifact as sound matter within usability contexts, from an industrial design perspective. The recordings from this line of work are also hosted in Freesound, in the pack Objeto Sonoro. For this pack, we have started with the bicycle sounds as an initial case of study.

Currently, the SIAS project is developing its own platform as an integrated information system that allows open consultation on sound art in Colombia to all those people interested in sound. Finally, I want to thank the Freesound platform, which has allowed us to work openly with all our sound records and has been the repository hosting all our soundscape audios, facilitating open listening for all our researchers and students who have been interested in the project.

About Jorge Mario D?az Matajira:

Jorge Mario D?az Matajira is a University professor and researcher in the areas of education, humanities and arts. Master and specialist in university teaching, and, Professional Musician. Jorge Mario D?az Matajira is the coordinator and curator of the Master in Sound Art at the Universidad Antonio Nari?o in Bogot?, Colombia.

About the SIAS team:

General direction and state of the art: Jorge Mario D?az Matajira (UAN)

– Alexander Orejuela Susa (UAN)
– Elio Higinio Cables P?rez (UAN)

– Expert advisor: Roberto Cuervo Pulido Ph.D., researcher at the Pontificia? Universidad Javeriana (PUJ).
– offices outside bogota: Sandra Cecilia Mesa Garc?a and Juan Carlos Floyd Llanos (UAN)
– Sound Object Sub-line: Juan Fernando Parra Castro (UAN)
– Heritage Sub-line: Liliana Fracasso and Bernardo Mu?oz (UAN)

– David Andr?s Carrascal G?mez (UAN)
– Rodrigo Iv?n D?az S?nchez (UAN)

Bibliography, Master’s Degree and News: Jorge Mario D?az Matajira
Contact us at?direccion.arte.sonoro@uan.edu.co


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