There is not a hard coded limit to the number of sound areas you can include in a SonicMaps project. However, if you are planning to use the SonicMaps Player in offline mode, there is a limit to the amount of data you can store in your browser’s Cache Storage. We recommend splitting very large projects into smaller ones that you can save and edit independently. This will improve the performance of the Editor and Player apps and the final user experience.
You should try not to overlap more than 3 or 4 sound areas at a single location. Having a larger number of overlapping sounds may not pose a problem when working on a desktop or laptop machine with enough resources, but it might cause glitches (e.g. clicking noises, etc.) when trying to playback those audio files simultaneously on a lower-end mobile device with limited CPU power. Sometimes, a possible solution is to "downmix" some materials into a single audio file so the audio engine needs to play fewer simultaneous sounds.
Also, when using GPS location services there is a slightly higher CPU overhead given that sound areas need to be checked every time there is a position update (which might happen every second or so). In this case, we recommend you always test your projects on-site using different devices (including some older models) to ensure everyone will have a satisfactory experience.
Currently, the maximum upload size for an audio file is 300 MB. All major audio file formats are accepted (MP3, WAV, AIFF, etc). Once uploaded, audio files are internally converted to the OPUS codec format which delivers nearly transparent sound with very low bandwidth usage. This format also ensures compatibility with most browsers and platforms. Therefore, our recommendation is to upload uncompressed files with the best possible audio quality that can be preserved after conversion.
The reason why some sound areas are not visible when playing a sound map is because those areas are using the conditional playback feature ("Enable if.... has ended") so they will only become active and visible once the sound selected in this property has finished playing. This feature can be useful to ensure your audience experiences your sound map following a particular order/sequence.
In addition, sound areas also have an "invisible" property which, when enabled, also hides a sound area while listening in the Player, but unlike the conditional playback property, an invisible area will still be active and sounds will be triggered when you enter them. Invisible areas are shown in the Editor as a semi-transparent layer. They are normally used in treasure hunt games or when you want to focus the user attention on other visible areas while playing sounds in the background without a visual presence.
There are two options, depending on whether the project is to be experienced on-site (GPS enabled) or not:
The first option, when GPS tracking is required, is to invite your visitors to use the SonicMaps Player where your project will be listed once it's made public. To make it even easier, you can obtain a direct link to your work from the SonicMaps Editor ("My projects" window). If anyone clicks on the link, that project will be presented in the SonicMaps Player ready to be experienced.
A second option is to embed your sound map into a website so it can be navigated by simply dragging a human icon on the map (simulated walk). Embedding codes can also be obtained from the SonicMaps Editor.
An internet connection is required to fetch a project’s data from the SonicMaps servers before it can be experienced by a user. However, once a project is loaded in the SonicMaps Player, it is possible to download all the project's data—including audio files and relevant map tiles—to the browser’s Cache Storage so it can later be experienced without an internet connection. Even if a cellular internet connection is available, you might still want to pre-download your project while on WIFI to avoid data charges and reduce loading times.
Once a project is downloaded all project data will remain in the browser cache storage for at least two weeks unless you manually clear the browser history/cache. Data is very rarely automatically cleared by the browser. However, Safari will automatically purge cache assets after 7 days for web apps that have not been added to the home screen, so downloaded projects will no longer be available.
The easiest way to share a project is to use the "Share" button located at the bottom right corner of the SonicMaps Player after a project has been loaded. This method generates a unique URL for the project that can be sent via email or social media.
When you first open the SonicMaps Player app you should see a pop-up window asking for permission to use your precise location. Once you accept and a GPS fix is obtained, your location should be displayed on the map as a small blue circle. If that is not the case, please make sure GPS and Location Services are enabled and your browser has permission to use this service. On some operating systems (e.g. iOS) permissions are now granted on a “per app” basis instead of being a global setting. Please check this troubleshooting guide for further information.
The GPS signal is independent from a cellphone tower signal, so your position should be accurate even if a cellular network is not available. Accuracy will mostly depend on number of satellites available and the proximity of large structures (buildings, etc.)
SonicMaps uses Location Services in your device to retrieve your location, which internally uses different methods to improve accuracy depending on the device and OS. These methods include using databases of cellular or WiFi networks near you, but the main source of accuracy is GPS. In optimal conditions a consumer-grade GPS sensor will generally provide between 2 and 5 meters horizontal precision. Take into account this limitation when designing your project by providing enough "padding" in your sound areas and avoid drawing areas which are too small.