The Null Device
Japanese War Tubas. I repeat, Japanese War Tubas:
Seen on this page. The war tubas look like a musical instrument (some kind of Dadaist/Futurist sound-art device, or perhaps a super-loud military-band instrument designed to strike terror into the hearts of enemies, much as bagpipes were), but they were actually devices for acoustically locating incoming aircraft. I wouldn't be surprised if the photograph in question has graced at least one CD of experimental music/noise-art.
(via The Athanasius Kircher Society)
The street finds its own uses for ultrasonic teenager repellants; now some enterprising hoodie-wearing troublemakers have apparently sampled them into mobile phone ringtones inaudible to teachers and authority figures, allowing them to text each other and organise happy-slapping parties and such in class with the teachers remaining none the wiser. Or so the Metro (a throwaway tabloid given out on public transport in the UK) says:
Schoolchildren have recorded the sound, which they named Teen Buzz, and spread it from phone to phone via text messages and Bluetooth technology.
A secondary school teacher in Cardiff said: 'All the kids were laughing about something, but I didn't know what. They know phones must be turned off during school. They could all hear somebody's phone ringing but I couldn't hear a thing.I'm somewhat skeptical about this. Wouldn't the MP3 format's psychoacoustic compression algorithms wreak havoc with subtleties such as ultrasonic tones?
Anyway, I wonder how long until the Teen Buzz sound is heard in grime records, making the first form of teenage music that's actually (partly) inaudible to elders.
(via Boing Boing)