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Hobby Public Radio

Your ideas, projects, opinions - podcasted.

New episodes Monday through Friday.

The passing of FiftyOneFifty

It is with deep sadness we announce that another of our hosts and friends Donald Grier, known to us as FiftyOneFifty, has passed away.

FiftyOneFifty's frat brother Randy Hall has written an lovely piece. The team at Linuxlugcast are preparing our own tribute if you want to contribute an audio file you can email Honkeymagoo or join the show.

Our thoughts go out to his friends and family at this difficult time.

In-Depth Series

Sound Scapes

Come with us on a journey through sound.

Playing around with text to speech synthesis on Linux - Jeroen Baten | 2019-04-16

Below the script I used to generate a bunch of wav files with different text to speech applications.


string="This is HPR episode 2792 entitled \"Playing around with text to speech synthesis on Linux\" and is part of the series \"Sound Scapes\". It is hosted by Yeroon Bahten and is about 20 minutes long and carries a clean flag."
echo "${string}" > text.txt

espeak -w espeak.wav "${string}" 
espeak -w espeak-ng-v-mb-us1.wav -v mb-us1 "${string}"
espeak -w espeak-ng-v-mb-us2.wav -v mb-us2 "${string}"
espeak -w espeak-ng-v-mb-us3.wav  -v mb-us3 "${string}"
espeak-ng "${string}"
espeak-ng -v en-gb "${string}"
espeak-ng -w espeak-ng-en-gb-scotland.wav -v en-gb-scotland "${string}"
espeak-ng -w espeak-ng-en-us.wav  -v en-us "${string}"

flite -o flite-voice-cmu_us_slt.wav -voice cmu_us_slt  "${string}"

echo "${string}"| festival --language english --tts # same as next line
echo "${string}"| text2wave --language british_english --tts -o festival_british_english.wav
text2wave -o festival_british_english.wav  text.txt

for voice in don_diphone kal_diphone ked_diphone rab_diphone
  text2wave -o festival_voice_${voice}.wav -eval "(voice_${voice} )"  text.txt

# Gnustep say, recorded with audio recorder.
say "${string}"

text2wave -o festival_voice_cmu_us_slt_arctic_hts.wav -eval "(voice_cmu_us_slt_arctic_hts )" text.txt

# merlin

# marytts:

A reluctant dog walk - MrX | 2018-05-28

An explanation of hand stripping

I chopped the recording down a bit as it was originally over an hour long I thought it would just be too monotonous.

Listening back to the recording I can't believe it took me so long to get organised and get out the door.

With all the rhythmic clinking sounds it sounds more like I'm riding a horse than walking the dog, I think the supplied clip-on Dictaphone microphone is a bit on the sensitive side.

As a responsible dog walker, one of the most important pieces of equipment I take with me on every dog walk is the “Toley Bone” mentioned around one minute point.

Toley is a fine Scottish word, you can look it up if you are unfamiliar with it or alternatively just do a simple google search to be enlightened.

An example can be found here.

Listen out for the crinkling sound around the halfway point where it is put to good use.

The second most important piece of kit is a sweet, consumed around the 3 minute point.

The main part of the walk was fairly uneventful and consisted of traffic noise, passing by the local bus terminus where the bus turns at the end of its route, a rather noisy motorbike and a brief encounter with a fellow dog walker on route.

Finally ending with a treat and some light refreshment.

Oh, and in case you're wondering yes the the scones mentioned near the end of the podcast made by Mrs X were wonderful.

Oh and one final thing on listening back to the recording one more time I just realised that for some unknown reason just after the bus noise I started whistling very softly to myself, I don't remember doing that at all, I must have been doing it subconsciously. I could be wrong but it sounds to me like I'm whistling the tune “The animals march in two by two” I guess it was just the right tempo to help me round my one hour walk.

An Evening Subway Ride - MPardo | 2018-02-20

An experiment in background noise.

Having seen so many people fall asleep on subway trains, I wonder if the sound only would also be somniferous.

Using my cellphone I recorded the ride (including boarding and alighting) on the Toronto subway (line 1) from College Station, north to Sheppard/Yonge Station. There was always at least one person sleeping (or at least appearing to be asleep) during the ride.

Google Maps -

So far, listening to the recording has not put me to sleep.

The sound of Woodbrook Quaker Study centre in the Spring - Tony Hughes AKA TonyH1212 | 2017-12-12

This is a recording I made at Woodbrook Quaker Study Centre in Birmingham UK while I was there in April 2017.

I got the idea to release it as a show after listening to hpr2354 :: Night Sounds in Rural Tennessee hosted by Jon Kulp so here it is all 15 minutes of it.

The centre is right by the busy A38 trunk road so hence the constant hum of traffic noise in the background.

Night Sounds in Rural Tennessee - Jon Kulp | 2017-08-10

Upon arriving at my parents' house tonight, I was struck anew by the incredible sounds of wildlife where they live in the woods. I decided to record and share with the HPR audience.

Binaural recording 2 off to work - Quvmoh | 2017-07-19

This is a follow up to show 0785 where I explained how and why I was recording 3d sound using my home made Binaural head phones, this episode is a standard morning commute waiting for Phantom Hawk to pick me up in his big yellow bus, enjoy.

Wildswimming in France - Mark Waters | 2014-06-11

In this episode I take a swim along a section of the Charente river near Chatain in the Poitou-Charente region of France. I start upstream at the bridge and go down as far as the weir, then back. On the way I describe some of the things I am seeing, I pass some cows and a couple of French fishermen.

Apologies for the audio quality and panting, this was recorded by an old MP3 player cable-tied to a woolly hat.

A recliner bike and a wet suit parked by a bridge over a river

Mark Waters

Stanford marshmallow experiment - Zachary De Santos | 2013-10-08

The Stanford marshmallow experiment (wiki) refers to a series of studies on delayed gratification in the late 1960s and early 1970s led by psychologist Walter Mischel, then a professor at Stanford University. In these studies, a child was offered a choice between one small reward (sometimes a marshmallow, but often a cookie or a pretzel, etc.) provided immediately or two small rewards if he or she waited until the experimenter returned (after an absence of approximately 15 minutes). In follow-up studies, the researchers found that children who were able to wait longer for the preferred rewards tended to have better life outcomes, as measured by SAT scores, educational attainment, body mass index (BMI) and other life measures. However, recent work calls into question whether self-control, as opposed to strategic reasoning, determines children's behaviour.

A Stream - Zachary De Santos | 2012-09-27

Back in episode 1058, OggCamp12 Hardware Hackers, ( we met Zack at the hardware village at OggCamp12. He was busy with his project to orchestrate music based on the movement of a Kite.

Today he sent us in a recording of a stream. Ideal to use as ambient noise in the workplace or in your audio dramas. He has uploaded it to but we will also host the flac version of the original and of the edited show

hpr1085 flac version:
Zack's original: