Saturday, 9 May 2015

Chirpomatic: automatic birdsong identification!

We are delighted to announce our latest app, Chirpomatic, an automatic birdsong identifier!

Chirpomatic works rather like Shazam® does for music. When you hear a bird, quickly hold up your phone and start recording. After 10 seconds, the app will start analysing the sound, and will show you the top matches along with photos of the birds and notes to tell you  how varied the sound can be. You can compare your recording with the reference samples to check the identification.

The first version of the app covers bird calls and songs of parks and gardens in north-west Europe, and is currently available in English, German (Zwitschomat) and Swedish (Kvitteromat). We are already working on versions for North America, starting with backyard birds of the west coast USA, particularly California. If you would like to be told when the US versions are ready, you can sign up here.

The app works entirely off-line so you can use it wherever you are without worrying about network connections. The recordings you make are stored in the app so you can listen again, you can email them, or upload them to us. The recordings that you send us will be used to improve the app, and will also be made available to researchers.

As with all the iSpiny apps, Chirpomatic has been developed by myself and Alex Wilson. Alex is a specialist in machine learning and is currently completing his PhD at Oxford University. We also had advice from Dr Phil Howard, data scientist at a major games company.

We've been working on Chirpomatic since the end of 2013, but the road to a Shazam-style app for bird sounds is littered with highly publicised projects that failed to be completed, so we didn't announce it until we were absolutely sure that we would be able to finish it! And now we can celebrate!

If you would like to find out more about Chirpomatic, tap here for the App Store.

Shazam® is the registered trademark of Shazam Entertainment Limited and is not affiliated with iSpiny in any way.

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