White House Chimes in on 'Laurel or Yanny' Debate

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Celebs like Ellen DeGeneres and JJ Watt were also talking about it.

We built a tool to gradually accentuate different frequencies in the original audio clip. There's a simple explanation for why people perceive one thing so differently and science can explain it. Within a day, it started spreading on social media like a wildfire.

Here is the scientific explanation to why people are hearing two different words.

Poppy Crum, chief scientist at Dolby Labs in San Francisco, said the environment in which one listens, including whether headphones or a speaker are used, affects the intensity of the frequencies, and hence what one hears.

The audio very clearly said "yanny".

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The debate is this: a distorted audio bite plays and those listening in either hear "Yanny" or "Laurel". What does this mean?

Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders gets told that there are reports that say she hears Laurel. "If you're not picking up on those higher frequencies then it sounds more like Laurel".

If you run it through a High Pass Filter, and isolate Yanny, so that your brain knows what to look for, then it becomes hard to unhear and you start to hear both of them at the same time, so there is perhaps some mental perception involved as well. The word Yanny, the second frequency, has nearly exactly the same pattern as the L, R, L in Laurel.

The white house staff having a little bit of fun there.

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