If you’ve ever put on one of those nature soundtracks in hopes of chilling out, you know most of them can be tinny, repetitive, and usually sound pretty fake. What if you could tune directly into the actual sounds of nature, happening live at sites around the world? The thundering splash of a waterfall in Hawaii, the drum of hoofbeats at a watering hole in Africa, or the song of tropical birds in Costa Rica are all at your beck and call with a new device and mobile platform that’s launched on Kickstarter.
Terra has two components. One is a listening and tracking device, the other allows you the ability to connect to the Terra network and enjoy real natural sounds in your own home.
One half of Terra is the listening and enjoyment, essentially white noise or rain forest sounds on steroids. Using the Terra app gives you the ability to listen in and pipe the sounds of the natural world into your home, right to your smartphone and headphones, or to a connected speaker. Terra has a unique ability to filter out human-caused sounds too, so if someone’s dirt bike or nattering chatter is in range, it wouldn’t make it into your circle of serenity.
The second piece is a saucer-shaped sensor that you plug in somewhere in your own backyard. The sensor not only listens for the wildlife in your neighborhood and tracks things like bird calls but, using a radio receiver, it will be able to track tagged birds too. Then all that data is compiled, allowing conservationists to track migration patterns. Terra is — in essence — crowdsourcing conservation, and aims to create a global network of sensors and trackers that scientists will use for research into wildlife and migration.
You might be wondering why you wouldn’t just open the window if you wanted to hear the sounds of nature. Truth is, many of us live in busy cities where the call of the natural world is masked by trucks, jackhammers, lawnmowers, loud tailpipes, and general human noise. Terra gives you the soothing relaxation elements of nature, without the canned playback. It’s like a live webcam for your ears. Plus, by buying into Terra’s promise, you’re helping create that global research web. But don’t stop at natural audio, there are options for natural lighting too, like Nanoleaf Elements, which you could call smart lighting from the forest.
As with any Kickstarter campaign, it’s important to be aware of the potential risks associated with crowdfunding campaigns. This might include products that take longer to ship, aren’t as described, or don’t arrive at all. If you still want to get involved, head to Terra’s Kickstarter page to make your pledge. Down the road, Terra will also add more connected sensors for things like weather and soil moisture monitoring, and flood alerts. Terra will retail for $179. Shipping is currently set for summer 2022.
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