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Add Interactive Sound to Your Nuxt Site

Supercharge your Nuxt site's interactive elements with sound!

Intro

Recently, one of the most exciting things to happen to me was Sarah Drasner of Vue, Nuxt, SVG and animation fame tweeting about my website!

It's safe to say that was a crazy day. Out of all the kind words I received, the most frequent piece of feedback I received was about my sites interactions. It's true that interactions like the battery under my table of contents or an interesting train add a sense of joy and intrigue to an otherwise bland site. It gets people to stick around and explore and in turn, read more of your content!

One excellent way to facilitate interesting interactions is by adding sounds. If you have your volume up, for example, and click the battery to the right you'll hear some distorted cyberpunk-y charging sound.

I'll admit it's a bit jarring sometimes, so it's important to allow the user to choose if they hear these sounds on your site, and then save their preference for subsequent page visits.

This article will teach you how to add sounds to your Nuxt site, and leverage localStorage to save their sound preference!

Setup

Thankfully, our setup does not require any external packages! We can use localStorage to save the users preference which is supported by all browsers, and built-in Webpack features to load audio files into our components.

First, lets extend our Nuxt config to allow for loading sounds from our assets folder. Add the following lines to your nuxt.config.js file:

export default {
  build: {
    extend(config, ctx) {
      config.module.rules.push({
        test: /\.(ogg|mp3|wav|mpe?g)$/i,
        loader: 'file-loader',
        options: {
          name: '[path][name].[ext]'
        }
      })
    },
  },
}

This will let us import audio files like new Audio(require('@/assets/sounds/zap.mp3')); for example.

Great! Let's also go ahead and create a sounds folder inside of our assets directory to hold our audio files. If you'd like some sample audio to play with, feel free to check out the ones I am using currently on the site.

That's all of our setup! Let's write some code 🤓.

Initializing the user's sound preference

The first time a user visits our site, we can assume that their preference is they want sound to be played. This is entirely up to you if you'd prefer it to be opt-in or opt-out!

We will be utilizing Vuex to initialize a global variable that we can access in any page or components computed properties!

Create a file inside if your store directory called index.js.

export const state = () => ({
  isSoundEnabled: true,
})

export const mutations = {
  initializeSound(state) {
    const isSoundEnabled = JSON.parse(localStorage.getItem('isSoundEnabled'));
    if(!isSoundEnabled) {
      state.isSoundEnabled = false;
      localStorage.setItem("isSoundEnabled", false);
    } else if(isSoundEnabled) {
      state.isSoundEnabled = true;
      localStorage.setItem("isSoundEnabled", true);
    } else {
      state.isSoundEnabled = true;
      localStorage.setItem("isSoundEnabled", true);
    }
  },
}

Here we setup a Vuex mutation that we can call inside of a page or components mounted hook to read from our localStorage and determine if we already have a preference saved, or if we need to initialize their preference for the first time.

Then, inside of a page, we can simply call this mutation as well as access the preference via our isSoundEnabled state variable!

<script>
export default {
  mounted() {
    this.$store.commit('initializeSound');
  },
  computed: {
    isSoundEnabled() {
      return this.$store.state.isSoundEnabled;
    }
  }
}
</script>

Toggling the user's sound preference

Great! But, what if we want the user to change their sound preference? We'll need to implement another mutation that can allow us to edit this variable in our Vuex store as well as save the new preference to localStorage.

Go ahead and add to our index.js file in our store directory by adding the following method toggleSound:

export const state = () => ({
  isSoundEnabled: true,
})

export const mutations = {
  toggleSound(state) {
    state.isSoundEnabled = !state.isSoundEnabled;
    localStorage.setItem('isSoundEnabled', state.isSoundEnabled);
  },
  initializeSound(state) {
    const isSoundEnabled = JSON.parse(localStorage.getItem('isSoundEnabled'));
    if(!isSoundEnabled) {
      state.isSoundEnabled = false;
      localStorage.setItem("isSoundEnabled", false);
    } else if(isSoundEnabled) {
      state.isSoundEnabled = true;
      localStorage.setItem("isSoundEnabled", true);
    } else {
      state.isSoundEnabled = true;
      localStorage.setItem("isSoundEnabled", true);
    }
  },
}

Excellent! Now, we can create a method inside any page or component which will commit our toggleSound mutation any time we click on a button to change their preference!

<template>
  <button @click="toggleSound">
    Toggle my sound preference!
  </button>
</template>

<script>
export default {
  mounted() {
    this.$store.commit('initializeSound');
  },
  methods: {
    toggleSound() {
      this.$store.commit('toggleSound');
    }
  },
  computed: {
    isSoundEnabled() {
      return this.$store.state.isSoundEnabled;
    }
  }
}
</script>

Conditionally playing sounds

This is awesome! Now, any time a user interacts with a page element we wish to play sound from, we can first determine if the user has indicated they want to have sound enabled, and either play it or skip it entirely.

<template>
  <button @click="playSound">
    Play me!
  </button>
</template>

<script>
export default {
  data() {
    return {
      audio: null
    }
  },
  mounted() {
    this.$store.commit('initializeSound');
  },
  methods: {
    playSound() {
      if(this.isSoundEnabled) { 
        this.audio = new Audio(require('@/assets/sounds/zap.mp3'));
        this.audio.play();
      }
    },
  },
  computed: {
    isSoundEnabled() {
      return this.$store.state.isSoundEnabled;
    },
  }
}
</script>

Feel free to play around with this simple component below to test it out!

Is sound enabled: true

Wrapping up

As I said before, sound can be a great way to foster some truly unique interactions for your visitors.

This is just scratching the surface, but if you'd like a few more examples of unique sound interactions, be sure to check out Josh Comeau's or Jason Lengstorf's websites!

Thanks for reading, and if you enjoyed it please don't hesitate to share on Twitter below!

Last updated

January 12, 2021
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