Audition and Vestibular Function
This chapter describes the major structural components of the auditory and vestibular systems. The information provided by the vestibular system serves several critical functions including the maintenance of balance and the sense of spatial orientation and motion. Gamers who play popular video games like Modern Warfare or Halo sometimes experience motion sickness. In fact, it may be argued that modern technology has significantly expanded the range of stomach-churning situations one might encounter. The loudness of a tone also depends on its frequency. This can be demonstrated by having participants perform a loudness matching task wherein they vary the loudness of a sound to match the loudness of a reference sound. The chief challenge in designing or selecting an auditory alarm is ensuring that it is detectable in the environment where it is to be used. Vision is the primary sensory system used to present information to human operators.