Auditory graphs: The effects of redundant dimensions and divided attention
Peres, S Camille
Lane, David M
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An experiment is presented comparing the effectiveness of three parameters of sound for the auditory presentation of statistical data or auditory graphs. The dimensions of pitch, loudness, and time were used alone and redundantly to map the values of a box plot to an auditory graph. While previously, temporal mappings had resulted in better performance than mappings using pitch, panning, or loudness, these benefits were not consistently found in the current paradigm. Furthermore, to investigate possible benefits of mappings using two dimensions redundantly over mappings using one dimension, this experiment, compared mappings using integral and separable dimensions of sound - specifically, pitch and loudness (integral) and pitch and timing (separable). There was a benefit of a redundant design when the dimensions of sound used were integral whereas there was no benefit when they were separable. Finally, a task closer to a real-life application of auditory graphs was used where two sources of information were monitored simultaneously. The results support the argument that auditory graphs can be used effectively in ``eyes busy'' situations where more than one source of information is being monitoring.