Click the Listen button to understand the pattern of the line chart. The audio is around one minute.
Chrome browser, and headphones recommended.
Here is another example. This audio represents the above Bar Chart. The audio is binaural in nature. The value of a category is encoded as the length of that sound in the mix.
Inferring insights and understanding patterns that are otherwise hard to untangle is the primary reason behind employing data visualization. But, how to enable such data analysis that employs visualizations for people with visual impairments? One possible solution to make charts accessible is to use text readers to read the charts to the visually impaired. This solution is contradictory in terms of why the visualizations were employed in the first place. Understanding and inferring insights and patterns from such voice-based text readers are difficult even for people with no disability due to the inherent lack of short-term memory of the human's cognition system. We are exploring a new communication medium for making charts accessible by exploiting the human's intrinsic ability to distinguish natural sounds. We are motivated by the fact that visually impaired persons are generally good at understanding and identifying natural sounds, and thus, sonification techniques have great potential in this matter. In particular, we are interested in binaural sound environments where data would be converted to a mix of natural sounds.