Quantisation theory


What is quantisation?

The explanation that follows is deliberately non-scientific. If you would like to read a white paper on digital audio, I wrote one for Quantum Data Storage Solutions in 1996, you can probably find it in their archives.

The following description is representative because it explains another theory I have.

Traditionally scientists have always measured audio vibrations as continuous frequencies using an oscilloscope.

Modern digital audio music systems “sample” audio frequencies generally taking 44,100 snapshots every second.

When played back the “samples” appear to be a continuous signal and represent the waveform again.

Film works in a similar way, between 24 and 30 still images are played every second in quick succession and fool the eye into believing it is seeing continuous movement.

These still images are called frames.

To make digital audio work alongside image compression methods such as MPEG, audio sampling is broken up into grains or segments.

In traditional analog recording systems when you slow down the media (a record, or a tape) the pitch of the recording gets lower. Macy Gray ends up sounding like Barry White.

In digital systems however it is possible to slow down the music without changing the musical pitch. In fact it is even possible to freeze audio permanently and repeat it forever using looping.

To recap the most important part of what I just said. Digital audio systems break sound down into samples because the logic system needs to make measurements to understand and represent it. The audio signal is quantised to the clock speed of the processor.

I have been talking to people about consciousness and recreational drugs.


Because some of these people’s experiences (whatever moral attitude you take towards them) may hold the answers to the Universe and everything.

Imagine the red tape around a scientific program that suggested “we are going to give you an overdose of a veterinary drug and measure what happens to you”. It would never happen. Maybe the real lab is on the dancefloor?

In my podcast last week I interviewed a friend who had an experience with such a drug.

Am I condoning it? Let’s just say I don’t envy him the experience.

My Aspergers mind however is starting to pull information from various areas of my life experience and has come up with an interesting analogy.

The human brain is a logic system. We know this. We can measure some of the activity that takes place within it and we are starting to understand it more and more.

When my friend was tranquillised (for want of a better word) what if his central processor speed was slowed right down.

His perception of audio was that sound was slowing down and freezing in the same way that digital audio systems do when we deliberately time stretch audio to make it longer.

What this tells me is that his logic system is processing information in frames.

In other words, our logic systems are DIGITAL.

We ARE computers!

I actually wonder what scientists know that they don’t tell us.

Where do they get the ideas for pixels and quantisation from in the first place?

Perhaps we are slowly replicating ourselves in computing and entertainment systems and one day your DVD player will simply get up and kiss you?

As I said yesterday, I am exploring this idea further and request people contact me if they have any interesting experience in consciousness they wish to share.

The experience doesn’t have to be drug related and you can remain anonymous.

See you on the other side of the looking glass,

creative thinker | innovator | visionary