Cochlear Consciousness ear-training software for Amiga computers


Greetings, music lover:

I began to develop the Cochlear Consciousness ear-training software for my own use, because I recognized that interactive software would enable me to gain a deeper comprehension of music more rapidly and more easily than I could through any other means.

When friends saw me using early versions of the software that I was creating, they said others would want it. They were right!

This software makes learning easy and fun. Just start the games and play them. You will easily see that you are gaining something from these "games" that makes your musical life richer.

The software delivers, bug-free, all of the features just as described in the clear and informative manual. The manual for the software was extensively tested right along with the software itself.

The manual also has a more theoretical section, for those who are interested. It describes the origins of scales and chords and tuning systems. It's the only source I know of that offers such information all in one place.

If you haven't had other ear-training, that's fine! You can start as a complete beginner with this software, and save the time you would otherwise have wasted on less efficient methods of learning.

If you have ever done any other ear-training, you will recognize that the features of this software are unique and powerful. You won't find them elsewhere, not in other programs for any computer.

I designed the Cochlear Consciousness software to have lasting value and great scope. Beginners can easily use this software, and I know young children who do use it (including some who were "playing the games" during the software development). I also provided advanced levels, information, and flexibility, for those who want it. This software has all the stepping stones to take you from the beginning to advanced levels.

It's as simple as this:

- If you want to hear intervals, chords, and chord progressions well enough to reproduce them, to write them down, or to improvise upon them...

- If you want to correctly tune an instrument such as a piano or a guitar...

- If you want to hear what the masters heard...

Join the musically enlightened. When you understand the music you love, you'll love it even more!


Julius Pierce


The Cochlear Consciousness software is a suite of six programs. Each program provides you with an environment to explore some aspect of musical sound, and a game or quiz to refine your perception and knowledge. The games analyze your personal performance, adjusting the strategy so you make swift progress.

The "chords" program teaches you to recognize of intervals, chords, and chord progressions. You can use it with the supplied database of intervals, chords, or the harmonic extracts of over 100 Bach chorales. All database files are standard text files, so you can alter them if you want to. You can also create new ones with the built-in recording feature, or with a text editor. To enable you to achieve chord recognition in real-time, MIDI is supported. You can also access all features without MIDI.

The next four programs, (1) "harmonics", (2) "beats", (3) "just", and (4) "temper", are a sequence that teaches you the aural skills necessary to tune an instrument.

The "harmonics" program teaches you to recognize individual harmonics of a tone.

The "beats" program teaches you to recognize (nearly) coincident harmonics of two tones, and their beat rates.

The "just" program teaches you to tune so that the coincident harmonics of two different tones are beatless. This is "just" tuning.

The "temper" program provides an environment in which the skills of the previous three programs are consolidated. You can create or modify tunings (or temperaments) with a graphical user interface, and hear the changes instantly. You can load two different tunings and listen to the difference with a click of the mouse. The "temper" program can show you a graphical indication of the difference between two loaded tunings; or it can show you a numerical display of frequencies, beating harmonics, and beat rates (which is especially useful for those who are interested in designing tunings, or in studying beat rates in chords and intervals). A quiz mode is provided (as in all of the programs) so you can assess how well you tune to a reference tuning. The program comes with a great variety of temperaments and tunings. You can easily create or import other tunings either with the graphical user interface, or with any text editor, because the tuning files are just (editable ASCII) frequency tables. The tunings you create can also be used with the "chords" and "absolute" programs.

The "absolute" program teaches recognition of tones without the use of relative pitch. A testing mode eliminates relative-pitch feedback, so you can assess your progress with absolute pitch. The "absolute" program uses extensions of ideas discussed in two articles for the scientifically inclined: Lola L. Cuddy's "Practice Effects in the Absolute Judgment of Pitch" (from "The Journal of the Acoustical Society of America" vol. 43, #5, 1968), and Paul T. Brady's "Fixed-Scale Mechanism of Absolute Pitch" (JASA vol. 48, #4, part 2 1970). According to Cuddy's research, the method used in the "absolute" program of the Cochlear Consciousness software is effective, but the method used in another much-hyped commercial course in "perfect pitch" is not effective.

Cochlear Consciousness software implements a microtunable wavetable synthesizer on the Amiga. This synthesizer has better frequency precision than do many dedicated-hardware commercial synthesizers that claim to be microtunable. Such high-resolution tuning makes things possible that were not previously available on an affordable platform: you can learn the aural skills necessary to tune a piano, or you can even use the software for microtonal ear-training.

Cochlear Consciousness software runs on any Amiga with 500KB of RAM or more (and probably even much less), and AmigaDOS 1.3 or later.

Stereo speakers, or speakers with higher fidelity than speakers that are built into into a video monitor are recommended. Headphones are fine.

Cochlear Consciousness is not copy-protected, and includes installation software for hard disk drives. Cochlear Consciousness is commercial software.

Julius Pierce wrote the Cochlear Consciousness software and holds the copyright.

Cochlear Consciousness costs $150.00 (US Dollars, shipping is included, even international shipping), and is distributed by:

375 North Quince
Salt Lake City, UT 84103-1641
telephone: (801) 521-7215