Projects in Computer Music

Learning Data Sonification

Links for my computer music students

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What is Sonification?

  1. Wikipedia entry {WP}
  2. Kramer, et al., Sonification Report {ICAD} (Kramer, et al. 1997)
  3. Burk, et al., "Sonification," in Music and Computers (Burk et al. 2011)
  4. Strickland, "Sonification: The Music of Data," from Two Minute Music Theory {YouTube}

TED and TEDx Talks

  1. Wanda Diaz Merced, How a blind astronomer found a way to hear the stars, TED 2016 {TED}
  2. Margaret Anne Schedel, Making data sing, TEDxSBU 2016  {YouTube}
  3. Lily Asquith, Listening to data from the Large Hadron Collider, TEDxZurich 2013 {YouTube}
  4. Mark Ballora, Opening Your Ears to Data (2011), TEDxPSU 2011 {YouTube}
  5. Honor Harger: A history of the universe in sound, TEDSalon London 2011 {TED}
  6. Janna Levin, The sound the universe makes, TED 2011 {TED}
  7. JoAnn Kuchera-Morin, Stunning data visualization in the AlloSphere, TED 2009 {TED}

Sonfication using SuperCollider

  1. Till Bovermann, Julian Rohrhuber, and Alberto de Campo, "Laboratory Methods for Experimental Sonification" (Hermann 2011 et al., Ch. 10)
  2. Alberto De Campo, Julian Rohrhuber, Till Bovermann, and Christopher Frauenberger, "Sonification and Auditory Display in SuperCollider" (Wilson, et al. 2011, Ch. 13)
  3. Mark Ballora, "Sonification, Science and Popular Music: In search of the 'wow'" (Ballora 2014)
  4. See also: Learning SuperCollider

Other Tools for Sonification

  1. Chuck
  2. Csound
  3. Pure Data
  4. Max
  5. Python
For a recent survey of tools for data sonification, see Ch. 5 Towards a Data Sonification Design Framework, in David Worrall's Sonification Design: From Data to Intelligible Soundfields (Worrall 2019, 151-180).

Sonfication Projects

  1. DNA Sonification Toolkit {} (Temple 2017)
    An auditory display tool for DNA sequence analysis
  2. Sonifyer {Sonifyer}
    Supports audification, FM-based parameter mapping, and the sonification of EEG, fMRI, and seismological data
  3. Sonification Sandbox {}
    A simple, multi-platform, multi-purpose toolkit for sonifying data, the Sonification Sandbox allows the user to map data to multiple auditory parameters and add context using a graphical interface
  4. SoniPy {Home; Source Forge} (Worrall 2019)
    A heterogeneous software environment for data sonification research & auditory displays
  5. xSonify {Source Forge}
    A Java-based sonification data analysis tool for displaying science data as sounds, with an emphasis on supporting visually-impaired researchers


  1. CERN, ATLAS Open Data
    Open access to proton-proton collision data at the LHC for educational purposes
    The home of the U.S. Government's open data
  3. NASA/IPAC, Extragalactic Database {NED}
  4. NASA, Space Physics Data Facility
    Data from most NASA Heliophysics missions
  5. NCBI, GenBank
    he NIH genetic sequence database, an annotated collection of all publicly available DNA sequences

Misc. Links

  1. International Community for Auditory Display {ICAD}
  2. Georgia Tech Sonification Lab {}
  3. Manaris and Brown, Sonification and Big Data {Jython Music}
  4. deCampo, et al., SonEnvir {}
  5. Worrall, Sonification Workshops and Tutorials: Data Sonification using Python and Csound {ICAD 2016}


Ballora, Mark. 2014. "Sonification, Science and Popular Music: In search of the 'wow'." Organised Sound 19/1: 30–40. {Cambridge Core}

Bovermann, Till, Julian Rohrhuber, and Alberto de Campo. 2011.  "Laboratory Methods for Experimental Sonification." In the The Sonification Handbook, edited by T. Hermann, A. Hunt, and J. G. Neuhoff. Berlin: Logos Publishing House. Available online at: <>.

Burk, Phil, Larry Polansky, Douglas Repetto, Mary Roberts, and Dan Rockmore. Music and Computers: A Theoretical and Historical Approach, Archival Edition. Available online at: <>.

Cabrera, Andrés. "Interactive Sonification with Csound." The Third International Csound Conference (ICSC2015), St. Petersburg, Russia, 2-4 October 2015. {Zenodo}

deCampo, Alberto, Julian Rohrhuber, Till Bovermann, and Christopher Frauenberger. 2011. "Sonification and Auditory Display in SuperCollider." In The SuperCollider Book, edited by Scott Wilson, David Cottle, and Nick Collins. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.

Hermann, Thomas. 2008. "Taxonomy and Definitions for Sonification and Auditory Display." Proceedings of the 14th International Conference on Auditory Display. Paris, France. {SMARTech}

Hermann, Thomas., Andy Hunt and John G. Neuhoff, eds. 2011. The Sonification Handbook. Berlin: Logos Publishing House. Available online at: <>.

Kramer, G., B. Walker, T. Bonebright, P. Cook, J. Flowers, N. Miner, and J. Neuhoff. 1997. “Sonification Report: Status of the field and research agenda,” Technical Report. International Community for Auditory Display. {ICAD}

Manaris, Bill and Andrew R. Brown. 2014. 
Making Music with Computers: Creative Programming in Python. Boca Raton: CRC Press. {GB; CRC; Companion Website}

Schedel Margaret. 2014. "Sounds of Science: The Mystique of Sonification." Sounding Out! (October 9, 2014). Available online at: <>.

Temple, Mark. 2017. "An Auditory display tool for DNA sequence analysis." BMC Bioinformatics 18/221.
Available online at:

Wilson, Scott, David Cottle, and Nick Collins, eds. 2011. The SuperCollider Book. Cambridge: MIT Press. {GB}

Worrall, David. 2019. Sonification Design: From Data to Intelligible Soundfields. New York: Springer. {GB}

Updated: May 7, 2021

Reginald Bain | University of South Carolina | School of Music