Bark’n Mad

Usage Guide

Introduction Initial Control Screen Monitor Settings Monitoring Reviewing and Copying to iCloud for Emailing Options Feedback and Support Remote Monitoring over iCloud Colour Audio Analysis Information Display Device location tracking while monitoring Use of bluetooth speakers

Introduction

Bark’n Mad is designed to monitor barking dogs. This could be to monitor barking activity when you leave your dog(s) home without supervision or alternatively to gather evidence regarding the barking of a neighbour’s dog. Bark’n Mad monitors the noise level and visually highlights barking periods which you can quickly play back to review what has been going on. Bark’n Mad colour codes the barking such that the same noise at different times of the day can be visually identified. The primary focus of the app is towards the dog owner with facilities to manage and control dog barking activity. For instance Bark’n Mad can play a pre-recorded quiet command to your dog(s) when barking is detected as well as a praise message when they stop.

Initial Control Screen

Monitor Settings

Microphone settings on the iPad are just the single  microphone. On the iPhone (below) it is a bit more interesting with three microphones to choose from. The audio output settings allow you to select the volume for reprimands and praise as well as the in- built speaker or an airplay speaker. Bluetooth speakers and microphones are not supported. Available recording space and battery life are also displayed. Normally this form will be displayed only once before the initial monitoring session. Provided the app can restore the previous settings it won’t display it again unless there are limits on how long the app can record due to limited space or a partially charged battery.

Monitoring

The first time the Monitor button is touched the Monitor Settings form above will show. The elements of the monitoring form are described below. There are only four potential user interactions on the screen while monitoring, these are: The ‘Stop Monitoring’ button The snapshot email icon button which takes a screen snapshot as currently displayed and opens iOS mail with the attachment pre- populated. Adjustments to the microphone sensitivity slider which are commenced by touching the padlock to unlock it. See the next section. The problem report button in the top navigation bar. Use this to report an issue that has occurred in this session. Use of it causes the app to crash which results in me getting a crash report which includes logs from this session which may help in resolving the problem.

Adjusting the microphone sensitivity for a monitoring session

To adjust the sensitivity touch the locked padlock icon  next to the slider until it changes to an unlocked padlock as show. The last icon on the right (circle with vertical bar) centres the slider. In the normal noise environment where you are monitoring your dogs the app should be showing none or very few yellow underlines (barking detected) under the graph. Ideally the graph will be a grey line with a few colour points on it. If it is not then you should adjust the microphone sensitivity until it is. Slide the ball left to reduce the sensitivity. When it looks about right touch the padlock again to lock it. After monitoring sessions make minor adjustments left or right as required to suit your environment. If you cannot reduce the sensitivity sufficiently please email me with a screen capture of your results.

Reviewing and Copying

to iCloud for Emailing

Before you can review a recording you have to select the recording you want to listen to. The name given to recordings when they are created is the start date of the monitoring session followed by the start time including decimal seconds. The numbers in brackets are the hours and minutes duration of the recording. That is: YYYYMMDD-HHMMSS.sss (hh-mm) For information about protected and modifiable recordings please read the section on Protected Recordings and Emails. When you select a recording, the row is highlighted (greyed) and a tick marker is placed to the right of the row. Recordings with their name in a rectangle can be renamed by simply selecting the row and then touching the name a second time. If the recording can be reviewed then the play icon  in the top right hand corner becomes enabled. Touch this to replay the recording which opens a variant of the Monitoring form as shown below: Note that in the Session Summary above the same colour patterns are repeated which mean the same barks from the same dog. The colour patterns tell you what has happened in the session once you have listened to them a few times as your dogs barks are still going to be the same on different days. The current playback position is shown by both the slider and a vertical bar above it in the session summary graph. The snapshot email button if enabled is over on the right together with the ‘Stop Replay’ button. On the iPhone the ‘Stop Replay’ button is not present and you have to use the stop button at the left of the audio controls. The audio controls from left to right are:   Stop   Pause   Seek backwards to large peak   Seek backwards to medium peak   Play   Scan and play medium peaks   Scan and play large peak 2X  Double speed playback

Options

The options form contains all configuration settings and in-app purchase options. Touch here to open the options section.

Feedback and Support

The ‘Feedback and Support’ form provides options to: Provide feedback on Facebook Rate the app on the app store Send an email to app support Open the app FAQ page in Safari Report a problem

Remote Monitoring over iCloud

If an iCloud remote monitoring session is present on another device there will be a button at the centre bottom of the initial control screen to link to it. The button will be green if the session is currently active otherwise it will be brown. To see what happens read the section on iCloud Remote Monitoring and Email Alerts.

Colour Audio Analysis Information Display

Touching the       icon on the bottom right hand corner brings up the information display on the colour audio analysis: The important thing about this is that the same bark from a dog will bring up the same colour pattern each time which will assist you when reviewing monitoring sessions. For more information see the FAQ page entry How do I read my dogs mood from the colour analysis?

Device location tracking while monitoring

The location tracking option is available to owners of the full version and is enabled on the options form. When location tracking is enabled while monitoring a globe appears in the middle of the monitoring screen: If any significant location change is recorded then an outer white ring is added to the globe. Reviewing a monitoring session which has location monitoring enabled also shows the globe and outer ring if present in the summary area. Apart from this the only other place the location information is exposed is in protected emails with text similar to the following added: If the session was recorded with location tracking on there is no way to suppress this information in the protected email.

Use of bluetooth speakers

Bluetooth speakers are supported and if connected are used for all audio from the Options form and reviewing monitoring sessions. Owners of the full version may optionally enable preferred use of bluetooth hands free devices for monitoring and the replay of reprimands and praise. This option is set on the monitor settings form. It should be noted that the recording of reprimand and praise messages will still use the standard iPad or iPhone microphone because of quality issues.. When enabled any currently connected bluetooth devices are shown on the form. There is a bluetooth in use indicator shown on the monitoring screen. There is a separate microphone sensitivity setting for bluetooth monitoring. When reviewing the summary area also has a bluetooth in use indicator. This is the fact that the replay is using bluetooth not an indicator that the original recording used bluetooth. Technology Issues: Bark’n Mad normally samples and analyses audio at 48,000 hertz (48,000 samples per second) when using the iPad and iPhone microphones. This allows determination of audio frequencies between 0 and 24,000 Hz. When recording from a bluetooth hands free device the sampling rate is 10,000 Hz which reduces the audio frequencies analysis to between 0 and 5,000 Hz, fortunately most of the frequencies in a dogs bark are within this range.  Monitor recordings are made at 16,000 Hz as a compromise between audio quality and the space used. Because of this reduced quality with bluetooth the recording of reprimands and praise is done using the device’s own microphone. -
© 2016 John Hall
iOS Apps
for the iPad and iPhone by John Hall

Bark’n Mad

Usage Guide

Introduction Initial Control Screen Monitor Settings Monitoring Reviewing and Copying to iCloud for Emailing Options Feedback and Support Remote Monitoring over iCloud Colour Audio Analysis Information Display Device location tracking while monitoring Use of bluetooth speakers

Introduction

Bark’n Mad is designed to monitor barking dogs. This could be to monitor barking activity when you leave your dog(s) home without supervision or alternatively to gather evidence regarding the barking of a neighbour’s dog. Bark’n Mad monitors the noise level and visually highlights barking periods which you can quickly play back to review what has been going on. Bark’n Mad colour codes the barking such that the same noise at different times of the day can be visually identified. The primary focus of the app is towards the dog owner with facilities to manage and control dog barking activity. For instance Bark’n Mad can play a pre-recorded quiet command to your dog(s) when barking is detected as well as a praise message when they stop.

Initial Control Screen

Monitor Settings

Microphone settings on the iPad are just the single  microphone. On the iPhone (below) it is a bit more interesting with three microphones to choose from. The audio output settings allow you to select the volume for reprimands and praise as well as the in-built speaker or an airplay speaker. Bluetooth speakers and microphones are not supported. Available recording space and battery life are also displayed. Normally this form will be displayed only once before the initial monitoring session. Provided the app can restore the previous settings it won’t display it again unless there are limits on how long the app can record due to limited space or a partially charged battery.

Monitoring

The first time the Monitor button is touched the Monitor Settings form above will show. The elements of the monitoring form are described below. There are only four potential user interactions on the screen while monitoring, these are: The ‘Stop Monitoring’ button The snapshot email icon button which takes a screen snapshot as currently displayed and opens iOS mail with the attachment pre- populated. Adjustments to the microphone sensitivity slider which are commenced by touching the padlock to unlock it. See the next section. The problem report button in the top navigation bar. Use this to report an issue that has occurred in this session. Use of it causes the app to crash which results in me getting a crash report which includes logs from this session which may help in resolving the problem.

Adjusting the microphone

sensitivity for a monitoring

session

To adjust the sensitivity touch the locked padlock icon next to the slider until it changes to an unlocked padlock as show. The last icon on the right (circle with vertical bar) centres the slider. In the normal noise environment where you are monitoring your dogs the app should be showing none or very few yellow underlines (barking detected) under the graph. Ideally the graph will be a grey line with a few colour points on it. If it is not then you should adjust the microphone sensitivity until it is. Slide the ball left to reduce the sensitivity. When it looks about right touch the padlock again to lock it. After monitoring sessions make minor adjustments left or right as required to suit your environment. If you cannot reduce the sensitivity sufficiently please email me with a screen capture of your results.

Reviewing and Copying to iCloud

for Emailing

Before you can review a recording you have to select the recording you want to listen to. The name given to recordings when they are created is the start date of the monitoring session followed by the start time including decimal seconds. The numbers in brackets are the hours and minutes duration of the recording. That is: YYYYMMDD-HHMMSS.sss (hh-mm) For information about protected and modifiable recordings please read the section on Protected Recordings and Emails. When you select a recording, the row is highlighted (greyed) and a tick marker is placed to the right of the row. Recordings with their name in a rectangle can be renamed by simply selecting the row and then touching the name a second time. If the recording can be reviewed then the play icon  in the top right hand corner becomes enabled. Touch this to replay the recording which opens a variant of the Monitoring form as shown below: Note that in the Session Summary above the same colour patterns are repeated which mean the same barks from the same dog. The colour patterns tell you what has happened in the session once you have listened to them a few times as your dogs barks are still going to be the same on different days. The current playback position is shown by both the slider and a vertical bar above it in the session summary graph. The snapshot email button if enabled is over on the right together with the ‘Stop Replay’ button. On the iPhone the ‘Stop Replay button is not present and you have to use the stop button at the left of the audio controls. The audio controls from left to right are:   Stop   Pause   Seek backwards to large peak   Seek backwards to medium peak   Play   Scan and play medium peaks   Scan and play large peak 2X  Double speed playback

Options

The options form contains all configuration settings and in-app purchase options. Touch here to open the options section.

Feedback and Support

The ‘Feedback and Support’ form provides options to: Provide feedback on Facebook Rate the app on the app store Send an email to app support Open the app FAQ page in Safari Report a problem

Remote Monitoring over iCloud

If an iCloud remote monitoring session is present on another device there will be a button at the centre bottom of the initial control screen to link to it. The button will be green if the session is currently active otherwise it will be brown. To see what happens read the section on iCloud Remote Monitoring and Email Alerts.

Colour Audio Analysis 

Information Display

Touching the       icon on the bottom right hand corner brings up the information display on the colour audio analysis: The important thing about this is that the same bark from a dog will bring up the same colour pattern each time which will assist you when reviewing monitoring sessions. For more information see the FAQ page entry How do I read my dogs mood from the colour analysis?

Device location tracking while

monitoring

The location tracking option is available to owners of the full version and is enabled on the options form. When location tracking is enabled while monitoring a globe appears in the middle of the monitoring screen: If any significant location change is recorded then an outer white ring is added to the globe. Reviewing a monitoring session which has location monitoring enabled also shows the globe and outer ring if present in the summary area. Apart from this the only other place the location information is exposed is in protected emails with text similar to the following added: If the session was recorded with location tracking on there is no way to suppress this information in the protected email.

Use of bluetooth speakers

Bluetooth speakers are supported and if connected are used for all audio from the Options form and reviewing monitoring sessions. Owners of the full version may optionally enable preferred use of bluetooth hands free devices for monitoring and the replay of reprimands and praise. This option is set on the monitor settings form. It should be noted that the recording of reprimand and praise messages will still use the standard iPad or iPhone microphone because of quality issues.. When enabled any currently connected bluetooth devices are shown on the form. There is a bluetooth in use indicator shown on the monitoring screen. There is a separate microphone sensitivity setting for bluetooth monitoring. When reviewing the summary area also has a bluetooth in use indicator. This is the fact that the replay is using bluetooth not an indicator that the original recording used bluetooth. Technology Issues: Bark’n Mad normally samples and analyses audio at 48,000 hertz (48,000 samples per second) when using the iPad and iPhone microphones. This allows determination of audio frequencies between 0 and 24,000 Hz. When recording from a bluetooth hands free device the sampling rate is 10,000 Hz which reduces the audio frequencies analysis to between 0 and 5,000 Hz, fortunately most of the frequencies in a dogs bark are within this range.  Monitor recordings are made at 16,000 Hz as a compromise between audio quality and the space used. Because of this reduced quality with bluetooth the recording of reprimands and praise is done using the device’s own microphone. -
© 2016 John Hall
iOS Apps
For the iPad and iPhone by John Hall