Automated sonification of non audio files

The sonification of non-audio files is a well known data bending technique that can generate interesting and abrasive noises. Often its done in programs such as Audacity that can open raw files and interpret them as audio.

I wanted to find a way to automate this process as I was getting bored of clicking around Audacity when trying out a handful of files.

After looking at the code in Audacity that is responsible for importing raw files it was nice to see nothing magic was happening: most of the code is setting up a dialog and guessing default values for it. The main part simply opens the file with libsndfile with a major format of SF_FORMAT_RAW and sets sub formats based on the result of the dialog.

So I wrote a small command line program that does the same thing: it takes an input file, opens it with libsndfile (providing options for available formats) and writes the result out to a seperate file.

Here is a couple of example outputs from the program, the first is a small selection from a 2gb virtual box file and the second is the .Framework file from node-webkit.