Wednesday, 30 September 2009

Simon Mayo and the Bittern

As I have mentioned before I am a huge fan of Simon Mayo, the BBC radio presenter, and am thrilled that he is a fan of Chirp! So when he requested the Bittern as an addition, I rushed to the sound files (and the translators) to add it straight away. It is a great sound and a fascinating bird, but what I hadn't taken into account is that because the Bittern's call is so low in frequency, it is very hard to hear it through the small speakers of the iPhone or iPod. The deep booming call, that can carry for half a mile or more in the wild, sounds great on the computer but when I added it into Chirp and tried it out on the iPod it was completely inaudible, and if I increased the volume it simply distorted. Ho hum. After much experimentation I think I have an acceptable sound and it is in the latest update of Chirp! Europe. But you may just need to turn the volume up.....

Saturday, 5 September 2009

Current state of play

Rather alarmingly, the summer is almost over and I'm reviewing how much we've achieved. Updates have been very slow over the past couple of months - Apple are routinely taking longer than they used to, so the days of the weekly updates are over, and on top of that we had all the problems with the Wikipedia link.

But we have managed to get some new features and new birds in. I'm pleased to say that the Corncrake has now been added to the European version - what a great sound. The US version now includes 110 birds, and the next update will add a new feature - sorting by song style. This groups the sounds into categories such as Hoots and Coos, High Pitched, or Long and tuneful. This will be coming to the European version soon.

Don't forget to let us know what you think of the new features and continue to ask for new birds!