On Wed, 30 Jun 1999, Herman Miller wrote:

> You can use different levels of compression when creating MP3 files, just
> as with RealAudio. Still, anything less than 56Kbps isn't all that good,
> while 40Kbps RealAudio files sound just fine. I haven't done many
> comparisons yet, but it seems from my preliminary testing that 56Kbps is
> the minimum quality that is usable for conlang samples, which is 1.4 times
> the size of comparable RealAudio files. So I'll probably stick with
> RealAudio for the near future.

I'm using the very lowest quality wav files for my grammar - I think those
are the smallest files I can generate, even smaller than realaudio or mp3
files of the same length. The noise, crackle and distortion just adds the
authentic fieldwork flavour - recordings made with a grotty dictaphone,
which runs on batteries that are overcharged from the generator of the
local travelling bhidiyo (video - civilisation comes everywhere) theatre.

I've been looking around yesterday night real hard around real's website
(which I found as chaotic as the government structure of the European
Union) and found that they have a realproducer for Linux, too. But it's an
11 meg download, and you need another 5 meg dowload to fix the bugs! And I
still can't play .ra or .rm files that I find on my harddisk with the
realplayer - can that be done with the recording kit, too?

I've still the intention to provide every example in grammar in a spoken
form, but the 72 examples I've so far take 1892 kb - I think the Grammar
of Denden will become a CD-only production! Does anyone know of another
multimedia grammar on the web or on the market? I've been pondering about
how technology could support a linguistic description (see my essay at, but I can't imagine
I'm the first person to have thought in that direction.

Boudewijn Rempt  |