Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Noise pollution solution

We have some neighbors who like to party. Apparently they're restuarant or theater people (or both). They're in their 20s, I guess, and they like to play music and giggle out on the deck, which happens to be two feet from our bedroom window. Often these get togethers happen without us noticing them because we're already asleep. However, the other Saturday night (I guess it was really Sunday morning) they had a real rager. Another neighbor called the police at midnight with a noise complaint and then at 2 AM opened the window and said, classically, "If you don't quiet down I'm gonna come over there and it's not going to be pretty!" Although my wife and I were irritated by the noise, that made us chuckle. It was like something out of an old movie.

Anyway, I was thinking of a technology that would allow sound to be directed only at those who wanted it and not at those who didn't. I'll be short on details here -- I don't want to get bogged down on where this technology resides or who or what controls it. The end result would be that you could have a party in which your house and your deck and your yard was filled with sound for those who wanted it. On the other hand, for the parent types next door, silence. This would also make the party somewhat cooler too. For example, you could go into the room where people were dancing and, if you wanted to dance, raise the volume of your own experience of the music to an appropriate flailing volume. On the other hand, if someone entered the room whom you wanted to talk to, you could both lower your volumes for a moment while you talked.

Eliminating all undesired sound and controlling the desired sound -- isn't that a nice goal?

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At 1:39 PM, Blogger MKT said...

What if you had a GIANT speaker, with a directional mic on the back, that basically did noise cancellation? Just played the out of phase noise at the same volume?

Something tells me that wouldn't work :-)

At 11:52 PM, Blogger John Markos O'Neill said...

I think we want to either direct the sound (I hear it's been done) or maybe everyone should wear headphones, all the time.

At 7:05 AM, Blogger Keala said...

I like that idea. My neighbor needs it.

At 10:22 AM, Blogger Psipsina said...

If you could do that (lower your personal experiential volume so you could talk to someone else), I might actually go to bars.



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