April 24, 2008

Can You Hear It?

Click on this audio file. Do you hear anything?

That sound drove me nuts when I was younger. I would sometimes hear it coming from old TVs that were left on, and couldn't figure out why others didn't find that sound so annoying. It seemed to me that they couldn't even hear it. Now I've come to learn that it's such a high-pitched sound that only kids and young adults are sensitive to it. Older adults can't hear it at all.

I can still hear it (woo-hoo! at 37!), but it's not nearly as annoying as it used to be.

Some teens have downloaded this sound as a ringtone onto their phones. That way, when their phones ring in class, the teacher won't know. Some shop owners, on the other hand, use this sound to keep teens from loitering.

P.S. I just tested my link to make sure it worked. It sent the dog running from the room.

Afternoon Update: My son is home from school now, doing his homework. Without saying anything to him, I clicked on the link. His head immediately shot up, and he said, "Ow!"

Final note: We have pretty good computer speakers. I wonder if all speakers are capable of playing this high pitch.

4 comments:

Pastor Bob Cornwall said...

OK Danny, now you make me feel old. I couldn't hear a thing!

Adam Gonnerman said...

I'm going to have to play that at home this weekend. No speakers on my work computer. I'm sure my kids will love it. I do remember the annoying TV whine but hadn't thought about it for a long time.

Dan Mayes said...

Get a good commentary about this questionable practice of teen-deference at:
http://www.theriddlegroup.com/blog/
See the April 23 post titled "Kids Be Gone?"

Adam Gonnerman said...

Oh WOW. That was loud and VERY annoying.

I didn't expect to be able to hear it. I'm 32.

If that's what shop owners are using to drive loitering teens away, they'd probably get rid of me too.