Earth Notes: Yearly Electricity Grid Flows Sonified

Updated 2024-04-23 12:59 GMT.
By Damon Hart-Davis.
Sonification: total electricity imports and exports 2009 to 2023 #podcast #audification #house
water sounds GarageBand screenshot
No voiceover: another mini "house" track built with data from to inclusive.
131s "20230710 V5p2p5 house flow Y" (captions) Uploaded . Downloads:
Transcript:
[Yearly total 16WW grid electricity flows (imports plus exports), house percussion and bass, converted to audio via GarageBand and Audacity.]

Show Notes

MIDI generated via V5.2.5 of the V5 Java statsHouse implementation on GitHub, run through GarageBand as-is and bounced to SoundCloud in lossless format (AIFF), and converted in Audacity to FLAC and MP3.

The CSV data file and MIDI outputs including the house style are here.

Here is a copy of that source CSV:

#YYYY,device,coverage,flow,comment
#collapse,"MtoY"
#input,"data/consolidated/energy/std/flow/M/synth/flow-M-synth.csv"
2009,synth,0.25,551.8
2010,synth,1,4278.5
2011,synth,1,4575.5
2012,synth,1,4309.4
2013,synth,1,4308.7
2014,synth,1,4537.7
2015,synth,1,4409.5
2016,synth,1,4392.8
2017,synth,1,4429.3
2018,synth,1,4349.4
2019,synth,1,3682.7
2020,synth,1,3813.1
2021,synth,1,3361.4
2022,synth,1,2591
2023,synth,0.5,1448.3

File sizes note

Starting with ~400 bytes of CSV source data containing 15 data points, the full 'house' MIDI file is ~10kB, but compresses back down to ~0.5kB with zopfli in this case. On-the-fly compression by a Web server will likely be close. (The brotli-compressed version is smaller than the source CSV.)

The AIFF uncompressed lossless file at the other extreme, as sitting in SoundCloud, is ~35MB, thus ~65,000 times larger! The FLAC is ~14MB, the best MP3 ~3MB and a mono lo-fi MP3 ~900kB. The mono lo-fi Opus is ~400kB.

For most uses, with a decent synthesiser, there will be little effective difference between the compressed MIDI and the 'good' MP3 at a ratio of ~6,000x or nearly four orders of magnitude!

     422 csv

     410 mid.br
     529 mid.gz
   10732 mid

  405442 opusL
  868020 mp3L
 3305395 mp3
14334364 flac
34626370 aiff
~248 words.