1. Introduction
  2. Basics
  3. Vibration
  4. Resonance
  5. Wave Types
  6. Wave Speed
  7. Wave Behavior
  8. Pitch
  9. Fourier
  10. Perception
  11. Strings
  12. Tubes
  13. Percussion
  14. Voice
  15. Musical Scales
  16. Acoustics
  17. Electricity and Magnetism
  18. Electronics

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1: Introduction

K. Forinash, professor of physics
School of Natural Sciences
Indiana University Southeast
New Albany IN 47150

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This is an interactive, on-line eText on the physics of sound. It is designed as an introductory course text and requires no previous physics exposure; I am using it in my physics of sound course for non-science majors in place of a hardcopy text. Brief introductions to physics concepts are provided as they are needed (and can be skipped if they are familiar to the reader). There is a little bit of algebra involved but not much.

If you see any errors or have ideas for topics that should be included, please contact me: You are welcome to use anything you find here although a few of the images are restricted by the Wikimedia Commons license.

NOTE: These Applets and scripts have been tested to work on with the usual browsers and operating systems but they cannot be guaranteed to work with all browsers on all platforms and forever. In the current version of Java you have to set security to "medium" in the Configure Java control pannel for the simulations to work. You may be able to work on an iPhone or iPad with some of the simulations using Cloud Browse or AlwaysOnPC. Someday (maybe) I may try to convert the Java applets to JavaScript and HTML5.

If you are interested in more detailed explanations of wave behavior you may wish to see my eText/tutorial on Waves.

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