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We investigated production of lexical stress in children with and without autism spectrum disorders (ASD), all monolingual Italian speakers. The mean age of the 16 autistic children was 5.73 years and the mean age of the 16 typically developing children was 4.65 years. Picture-naming targets were five trisyllabic words that began with a weak–strong pattern of lexical stress across the initial two syllables (WS: matita) and five trisyllabic words beginning with a strong–weak pattern (SW: gomito). Acoustic measures of the duration, fundamental frequency, and intensity of the first two vowels for correct word productions were used to calculate a normalised Pairwise Variability Index (PVI) for WS and SW words. Results of acoustic analyses indicated no statistically significant group differences in PVIs. Results should be interpreted in line with the exploratory nature of this study. We hope this study will encourage additional cross-linguistic studies of prosody in children's speech production.
This chapter outlines the recent development of short front vowel lowering in South African English as it is used in Cape Town by white speakers. Using the latest acoustic and statistical methods, the chapter shows how the KIT, DRESS and TRAP vowels are lowering and retracting in the speech of young speakers when compared to older speakers. The change that has had the most profound influence on the Reverse Vowel Shift is the extreme lowering and retraction of TRAP, which causes the lowering of DRESS in a pull chain. The FOOT vowel is well established as a centralised vowel which, because of its unrounded nature in South African English, overlaps with certain retracted KIT allophones. This can be seen as the impetus for the lowering of KIT as evidenced in the chapter. The Reverse Vowel Shift is an externally motivated, prestige-driven change due to the virtual contact with particularly American Englishes.
Finite element analysis is carried out to investigate the characteristics of Rayleigh, Sezawa and Love surface acoustic modes travelling along c-axis tilted ZnO layer on Si (001) half-space. The phase velocity dispersion curves, electromechanical coupling, reflectivity and mass loading sensitivity are studied for different electroacoustic coupling configurations and c-axis tilt angles θ. The behavior of Rayleigh and Sezawa modes operating as gas sensor, was simulated under the hypothesis that the ZnO free surface is covered with a thin polyisobutylene (PIB) film, 0.2 μm thick, able to selectively adsorb volatile gases at atmospheric pressure and room temperature. The sensor sensitivity to gas concentration in air, i.e. the frequency shifts per unit gas concentration, is studied and compared to some common materials used in literature. The obtained results, demonstrate the feasibility of high-frequency multimode micro-sensor based on the c-axis tilted ZnO piezoelectric thin film and operating in both liquid and gaseous environments.
What does ‘an opera of mankind’ sound like? It depends on what mankind sounds like, and what sounds the ‘prose’ prevents us from hearing. For Francois Villon, on whom Pound based his first opera, it sounded like the brothel, the street, the tavern, the sounds of ‘theft, murder, whoring, and praying’ and the rhythms of everyday language. It is of no small importance that Pound’s primary musical curator is R. Murray Schafer, the Canadian composer who edited Ezra Pound and Music (1977), and who helped Pound prepare Le Testament for a revival radio performance. In The Soundscape (1993), Schafer reads many of the sounds in Pound’s Cantos – the sea, the woodcutter and the machine. In establishing a new cultural-scientific-aesthetic ‘interdiscipline’ of soundscape design, Schafer found that Pound, for whom all disciplines were interdisciplines, exemplified this tendency in poetry.
Nonlinear propagation of ion acoustic waves has been studied in unmagnetized quantum (degenerate) plasma in the presence of an ion beam using the one-dimensional quantum hydrodynamic model. The Korteweg–de Vries (K–dV) equation has been derived by using the reductive perturbation technique. The solution of ion acoustic solitary waves is obtained from the K–dV equation. The theoretical results have been analyzed numerically for different values of plasma parameters and the results are presented graphically. It is seen that the formation and structure of solitary waves are significantly affected by the ion beam in quantum plasma. The solitary waves will be compressive or rarefactive depending upon the values of velocity, concentration, and temperature of the ion beam. The critical value of ion beam density for the nonexistence of solitary wave has been numerically estimated, and its variation with velocity and temperature of ion beam has been discussed graphically. The results are new and would be very useful for understanding the beam–plasma interactions and the formation of nonlinear wave structures in dense quantum plasma.
Little is known about the long term (greater than 10 years) quality of life in patients with vestibular schwannoma. This study aimed to evaluate long-term outcomes in patients with vestibular schwannoma.
A retrospective cohort study was performed across 2 academic institutions, with patients followed at least 10 years after vestibular schwannoma surgery (2000 to 2007). Telephone interviews were used to assess quality of life using the Glasgow Benefit Inventory and short form 12 item (version 2) health survey.
A total of 99 out of 110 patients were included. Increasing age and symptom burden were associated with poorer quality of life (p = 0.01 and 0.02, respectively). The presence of imbalance, headache and facial nerve dysfunction were all associated with poorer quality of life scores (p = 0.01, 0.04 and 0.02, respectively).
Identifying and managing post-operative symptoms may improve quality of life in vestibular schwannoma patients and can guide clinical decision making.
This article overviews the ultrasonic welding process, a solid-state joining method, using the example of welding of a magnesium alloy as well as the joining of magnesium alloys in general. In situ high-speed imaging and infrared thermography were utilized to study interfacial relative motion and heat generation during ultrasonic spot welding of AZ31B magnesium (Mg) alloys. A postweld ultrasonic nondestructive evaluation was performed to study the evolution of local bond formation at the faying interface (contact surface of the joint between the top and bottom Mg sheets) at different stages of the welding process. Two distinct stages were observed as the welding process progresses. In the early stage, localized reciprocating sliding occurred at the contact faying interface between the two Mg sheets, resulting in localized rapid temperature rise from the localized frictional heating. Microscale (submillimeter) bonded regions at the Mg–Mg faying surface started to form, but the overall joint strength was low. The early-stage localized bonds were broken during the subsequent vibrations. In the later stage, no relative motion occurred at any points of the faying interface. Localized bonded regions coalesced into a macroscale joint that was strong enough to prevent the Mg–Mg interface from further breakage and sliding. With increasing welding time, the bonded area continued to increase.
To review the literature regarding screening for vestibular schwannoma in the context of demographic changes leading to increasing numbers of elderly patients presenting with asymmetric auditory symptoms.
A systematic review of the literature was performed, with narrative synthesis and statistical analysis of data where appropriate.
Vestibular schwannomas diagnosed in patients aged over 70 years exhibit slower growth patterns and tend to be of smaller size compared to those tumours in younger age groups. This fact, combined with reduced life expectancy, renders the probability of these tumours in the elderly requiring active treatment with surgery or stereotactic radiotherapy to be extremely low. Vestibular schwannomas in the elderly are much more likely to be managed by serial monitoring with magnetic resonance imaging. The weighted yield of magnetic resonance imaging in the diagnosis of vestibular schwannoma in all age groups is 1.18 per cent, with almost 85 scans required to diagnose 1 tumour.
An evidence-based approach to the investigation of asymmetric hearing loss and tinnitus in the elderly patient can be used to formulate guidelines for the rational use of magnetic resonance imaging in this population.
We are in the midst of a transformation in the way that biodiversity is observed on the planet. The approach of direct human observation, combining efforts of both professional and citizen scientists, has recently generated unprecedented amounts of data on species distributions and populations. Within just a few years, however, we believe that these data will be swamped by indirect biodiversity observations that are generated by autonomous sensors and machine learning classification models. In this commentary, we discuss three important elements of this shift towards indirect, technology driven observations. First, we note that the biodiversity data sets available today cover a very small fraction of all places and times that could potentially be observed, which suggests the necessity of developing new approaches that can gather such data at even larger scales, with lower costs. Second, we highlight existing tools and efforts that are already available today to demonstrate the promise of automated methods to radically increase biodiversity data collection. Finally, we discuss one specific outstanding challenge in automated biodiversity survey methods, which is how to extract useful knowledge from observations that are uncertain in nature. Throughout, we focus on one particular type of biodiversity data - point occurrence records - that are frequently produced by citizen science projects, museum records and systematic biodiversity surveys. As indirect observation methods increase the spatiotemporal scope of these point occurrence records, ecologists and conservation biologists will be better able to predict shifting species distributions, track changes to populations over time and understand the drivers of biodiversity occurrence.
To examine when cochlear fibrosis occurs following a translabyrinthine approach for vestibular schwannoma resection, and to determine the safest time window for potential cochlear implantation in cases with a preserved cochlear nerve.
This study retrospectively reviewed the post-operative magnetic resonance imaging scans of patients undergoing a translabyrinthine approach for vestibular schwannoma resection, assessing the fluid signal within the cochlea. Cochleae were graded based on the Isaacson et al. system (from grade 0 – no obstruction, to grade 4 – complete obliteration).
Thirty-nine patients fulfilled the inclusion criteria. The cochleae showed no evidence of obliteration in: 75 per cent of patients at six months, 38.5 per cent at one year and 27 per cent beyond one year. Most changes happened between 6 and 12 months after vestibular schwannoma resection, with cases of an unobstructed cochlear decreasing dramatically, from 75 per cent to 38.5 per cent, within this time.
The progress of cochlear obliteration that occurred between 6 and 12 months following vestibular schwannoma resection indicates that the first 6 months provides a safer time window for cochlear patency.
To assess the effect of topical betahistine on Eustachian tube function in subjectively abnormal subjects in a hyperbaric chamber.
Active and passive Eustachian tube function was examined using tympanometry in a pressure chamber.
Active Eustachian tube function was tested against the negative middle ear pressure induced by increasing the chamber pressure to +3 kPa. One voluntary swallow decreased middle-ear pressure by a mean of 1.36 kPa. Passive Eustachian tube function was tested by measuring spontaneous Eustachian tube openings as the chamber pressure dropped from +10 kPa to ambient. Four distinct patterns of Eustachian tube behaviour were seen, three of which indicated Eustachian tube dysfunction. Betahistine had no positive effect on Eustachian tube opening, although previous animal studies had suggested a beneficial effect.
Topical betahistine had no effect on Eustachian tube function. Combining a hyperbaric chamber with tympanometry proved ideal for evaluating Eustachian tube function.
Recent research on the acoustic realization of affixes has revealed differences between phonologically homophonous affixes, e.g. the different kinds of final [s] and [z] in English (Plag, Homann & Kunter 2017, Zimmermann 2016a). Such results are unexpected and unaccounted for in widely accepted post-Bloomfieldian item-and-arrangement models (Hockett 1954), which separate lexical and post-lexical phonology, and in models which interpret phonetic effects as consequences of different prosodic structure. This paper demonstrates that the differences in duration of English final S as a function of the morphological function it expresses (non-morphemic, plural, third person singular, genitive, genitive plural, cliticized has, and cliticized is) can be approximated by considering the support for these morphological functions from the words’ sublexical and collocational properties. We estimated this support using naïve discriminative learning and replicated previous results for English vowels (Tucker, Sims & Baayen 2019), indicating that segment duration is lengthened under higher functional certainty but shortened under functional uncertainty. We discuss the implications of these results, obtained with a wide learning network that eschews representations for morphemes and exponents, for models in theoretical morphology as well as for models of lexical processing.
Human alteration of the planet’s terrestrial landscapes for agriculture, habitation and commerce is reshaping wildlife communities. The threat of land cover change to wildlife is pronounced in regions with rapidly growing human populations. We investigated how species richness and species-specific occurrence of bats changed as a function of land cover and canopy (tree) cover across a rapidly changing region of Florida, USA. Contrary to our predictions, we found negligible effects of agriculture and urban development on the occurrence of all species. In contrast, we found that a remotely sensed metric of canopy cover on a broad scale (25 km2) was a good predictor of the occurrence of eight out of ten species. The occurrence of all smaller bats (vespertilionids) in our study increased with 0–50% increases in canopy cover, while larger bats showed different patterns. Occurrence of Brazilian free-tailed bats (Tadarida brasiliensis) decreased with increasing canopy cover, and Florida bonneted bats (Eumops floridanus) were not influenced by canopy cover. We conclude that remotely sensed measures of canopy cover can provide a more reliable predictor of bat species richness than land-cover types, and efforts to prevent the loss of bat diversity should consider maintaining canopy cover across mosaic landscapes with diverse land-cover types.
There are no definite guidelines regarding the most adequate steroid regimens for acute acoustic trauma.
To elucidate the dose-dependent differing benefits of oral steroids on hearing improvement following acute acoustic trauma.
Twenty-nine patients treated with oral steroids following a diagnosis of unilateral acute acoustic trauma were retrospectively reviewed. Patients were sorted into two groups with an oral steroid regimen. Group 1 received a 14-day course of treatment: 60 mg prednisolone daily for 10 days, tapering off over days 11–14. Group 2 received prednisolone for a total of 10 days: 60 mg for 5 days, tapering down each day for the remainder. Multivariable linear regression analysis was performed to evaluate the factors associated with the hearing gain.
In the multivariable regression (R2 = 0.51, p < 0.001), patients in group 1 showed more significant improvement in the degree of hearing gain compared to group 2 (p = 0.03).
After comparing the differing benefits of oral steroids on hearing improvement by dosage, we recommend a high dose of prednisolone (60 mg per day) for 10 days, tapering over the remaining 4 days, for better hearing recovery following acute acoustic trauma.
To investigate whether oxytocin can prevent ototoxicity related to acoustic trauma.
Twenty-eight rats were divided into four groups: noise (group 1), control (group 2), noise plus oxytocin (group 3), and oxytocin (group 4). Intratympanic oxytocin was administered on days 1, 2, 4, 6, 8 and 10 in groups 3 and 4. Groups 1 and 3 were exposed to acoustic trauma. Distortion product otoacoustic emission and auditory brainstem response testing were performed in all groups.
In group 1, auditory brainstem response thresholds increased significantly after acoustic trauma. In group 3, auditory brainstem response thresholds increased significantly on day 1 after acoustic trauma, but there were no significant differences between thresholds at baseline and on the 7th and 21st days. In group 1, significant differences were observed between distortion product otoacoustic emission signal-to-noise ratios measured before and on days 1, 7 and 21 after acoustic trauma. In group 3, no significant differences were observed between the distortion product otoacoustic emission signal-to-noise ratios measured before and on days 7 and 21 after acoustic trauma.
Oxytocin had a therapeutic effect on rats exposed to acoustic trauma in this experiment.
Ultrasonic sonochemistry and pulsed laser ablation in liquids (LAL) are modern techniques for materials synthesis that are in different ways linked to the formation and collapse of cavitation bubbles. We provide an overview of the physics of laser-induced and acoustically driven bubble oscillations and then describe how the high pressures and temperatures associated with ablation and bubble collapse, as well as emitted shock waves, take part in material synthesis inside and around the bubble. Emphasis is placed on the mechanisms of sonochemical synthesis and modification, and on a step-by-step account of the events from laser ablation through interaction of ablation products with the surrounding liquid up to the modification or aggregation of particles within the bubble. Both sonochemistry and LALs yield nanostructured materials and colloidal nanoparticles with unique properties. The synthesis process has been demonstrated to be scalable.
This article focuses on the acoustic-wave enhancement of chemisorption and surface reactions. Acoustic waves generated by a piezoelectric phenomenon on ferroelectric crystals by the application of radio frequency electric power produce periodic lattice distortions at the surface. The effects of surface acoustic waves (SAWs) and the resonance oscillation (RO) of bulk acoustic waves on thin films of metals or metal oxides are described herein. Both SAWs and RO can modify the work functions of thin Ag, Au, or Pd films, and this effect is highly dependent on the surface structures. These changes in the work function can, in turn, affect the adsorptive characteristics of the metals as well as surface reactions and properties such as catalysis. The importance of periodic lattice displacement vertical to the surface is examined in this article, and the acoustic-wave enhancement of metal and metal oxide surfaces as a means of tuning electronic states and chemical properties is discussed.