Wednesday, 24 August 2011

White noise and snowy white drives

White Noise 2 by =Falln-Stock

Feeling quite low energy and puttering about at home instead of being out running. Maybe I'll go to club later - maybe not. In the meantime I've been looking for techy solutions to long-standing problems.

Yesterday evening my twat neighbour was driving me crazy playing his music. Well I say "his" - but its not really his - its just music but I think the poor wee lad is making up for having no personality, no hobbies, no work and nothing of value to contribute by playing loud music and hoping that adds up to mattering in some way. I may be a little jaded on the subject. I'm not reacting to it in the best way either. All I have to do is hear a boom-box far in the distance now and my brain screams MURDER, MURDER, MURDER! Its stressfull.

Anyway - I think the noise levels were right on the margin of the environmental wardens being able to do anything about it and I wasn't in the mood for the pantomime of phoning the police and then waiting with baited breath to see if the sound will go on or if it will stop before they get here thus making it seem like a pointless call out and making me look like I'm wasting their time. Plus I think the boy's gambit is to garner attention to himself in some way and I feel that if I get so caught up in it that I'm waiting to see if it will go on or if it will stop then I have become a slave to his needs. So I tried to ignore it - but it was chipping away on the edge of my awareness making it hard to concentrate on anything else.

I had heard of noise cancelling technology so I thought I'd have a bit of a google to see what I could find out. I was hoping for a large ray gun which you could fire though walls but it turned out to be more about special headphones that keep the outside noise out by, em, cancelling it with a ray gun. I ordered the cheapest pair I could find, not because I believe that they will keep boom boy out of my awareness but because they also promised to be effective against snoring. Because SOMEONE in this house does snore, and its not me. Yet another sound that snags the edges of your awareness and can pull you back from the blessed relief of dreams into the boiling, gull-filled, dull world of irritation which is early morning.

Anyway, while I was stumbling about in google-world I was coming across references to white noise and its usefulness as a way of putting up a wall between yourself and irritating noises. First of all I came across a website generously selling the sound of your kettle boiling for $12 a download. "Surely to God you can get this stuff for free." I thought to myself and added the word "free" to my search and bish, bash, bosh I was at this guy's website. Or maybe its a lady, actually, I'm not sure. So I'm sitting here listening to whitenoise, with a heartbeat and some odd ambient sounds of the aliens leaving for space. I downloaded it onto my mp3 so I was armed against the all-pervasive bass beat of my neighbour but he had called it a day. So I have no idea of its effectiveness. I listened to it for a while anyway and imagine it was a similar experience to if you're in a light coma, flickering in and out of consciousness, with an oxygen mask on.

But what of snowy white drives? Well we have two old computers kicking around the house which in our inertia we're just sharing space with. They're too old to be much use to anyone and are (or have been) too full of passwords etc. to safely throw out. (Plus I think they need to be properly disposed of?) So I thought I'd try to address the first problem and have got a bit of software which is meant to "deep-clean" your hard drives. I'm kind of aware that this software is aimed at the security minded and at paedophiles, which is a bit off-putting. Anyway, today I switched on no.1 old computer and had the reaction I knew I would. I wanted to keep it - even though it has not been used since September 2009. It has a problem with (I think) its motherboard which means it started being very erratic about whether it came on or not. Apparently that's fixable but in the meantime its running Windows XP and its processor and storage capacity no longer seems as awesome as it once did. I'm in the process of cleaning it just now, which is taking an age. In the meantiime its memories are being chased and destroyed, presumably a bit like the plot of "The Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind" and I'm feeling a bit sorry for it.

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