Audio has played an important role in interactive entertainment for the majority of its existence. Unfortunately, early home consoles were completely silent as they lacked the processing power to handle both audio and visuals. The first game with audio, seen on american shores, was Taito’s “Gunfight” which used a microprocessor instead of hardwired circuits and a mono amp for gunshot noises. Taito later follows this innovation with the classic “Space Invaders”. By the early 70s, home computers were being released that plugged directly into the TV but still didn’t play sound. The late 70s saw the release of early mono audio machines, from which the tembre was improved until the early 90s, when stereo consoles began releasing. From here, There’s a more complex turn of events involving many releases of PC sound cards and iterations on similar consoles. At this point we see an interesting battle of software and hardware between the major manufacturers. This is where I will explore the specifics of audio solutions, both hardware and software. As well as this, I look forward to discussing the impact these solutions have on the audience. First I will consider the earliest uses of sound.
So comfortable. So very comfortable. Wow, really really comfortable. Had something happened to her bed? Did it magically get better? Overnight? Did she find the right position? Was that all it took? Strange. Better not waste it, she thought, not moving an inch. Then, her back felt a little cold. Why was the bed cold? That’s really unusual. Why would her bed be cold? She twisted around to find her blanket. Still twisting. Still twisting. Still twisting. Or is it turning? She had stopped twisting but she was still turning. Opening her eyes was an admission of defeat. Nothing is wrong. It’s fine. It couldn’t be anything other than her imagination. No. She’s still spinning, for sure. Fine, the final step has arrived. It’s time to wake up.
As a child, The idea of mumbling orders at a computer in darkened room appealed to my little hacker fantasy. Dreams of saying things as vague as "break into the mainframe" or "bypass the firewall" are not only dashed by the knowledge that "mainframe" is really just a cooler sounding word for database but also exasperation with talking to machines. Under what circumstance would it be faster to issue a verbal command rather than pressing a button? or even just typing?