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Human sounds for appliances

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My microwave has the longest, hightest pitched, most annoying beeeeeeeeep! when the timer reaches zero. I hate it. My washer and dryer buzz. My oven beeps like a dump truck backing up.

I propose we do away with the lot and replace them with more human sounds. When a washer or dryer is done with it's load of laundry, it should {clear its throat}. When an oven time counts down to zero it should {take a long smell through its nose and sigh}. A microwave should {whistle}.

Sound selectablity is a must - whether through MIDI download or built-in choices. Celebrity voices could be a market all their own. (<BestHughGrant> "Er, um, pardon me, but I think the bread is done" </BestHughGrant>)

phoenix, Nov 13 2001

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       I think we've had something similar posted before, so I may be rehashing old objections, but anyway, when cars started talking a few years ago, most people decided they prefered the beeps to a patronising pre-recorded voice. Beeps have the advantage that they're easy to hear in another room or over the TV. I assume that's why they're so loud and piercing. Most washing machines and dishwashers don't make a beep when they finish, they just stop groaning and whirring. I guess some people might like the novelty value, but maybe not for long.
pottedstu, Nov 13 2001
  

       'Most washing machines and dishwashers don't make a beep when they finish'
I'm sure I read somewhere that there's an EU regulation to the effect that all electrical appliances which run without a user (ie not something like a vacuum cleaner or blender) must beep when they stop running.
angel, Nov 13 2001
  

       Just like the spaceship doors in HHGttG: "MMMMMMMMMMMmmmmmmmmm - Glad to be of service".
hippo, Nov 13 2001
  

       angel: All the washing machines in places I've stayed seem to have been manufactured in the dark ages by drunken alchemists, so I guess they predate this regulation.   

       Perhaps a volume control would be a nice idea though.
pottedstu, Nov 13 2001
  

       I think that where I read it was the instruction booklet for my bread-maker. I'll check, if I remember.
angel, Nov 13 2001
  

       My car laughs at me when I start it up.
po, Nov 13 2001
  

       Definitely a touch of Douglas Adams in this one, as hippo points out.
DrBob, Nov 13 2001
  

       "While were at it, why don't we make super-intelligent robots with the ability to tell you malodorous humans the date, time, and temperature with digitally precise voice-mechanized mimcry of giggly schoolgirls. I know that's how I'll end up spending the next thousand years. Sigh." --Marvin the Robot   

       <zaphod adds> My microwave is hideous--"Beep, Beep, Beep" when finished and occasional "Beeps" until you see what the hell's the matter; my dryer goes, "BUZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ!;" my washing machine just sits there wondering why everyone else gets all the attention, but my spaceship has a sexy voice!
zaphod12, Nov 13 2001
  

       [DrBob] I never touched Douglas Adams. You can't prove a thing.
phoenix, Nov 13 2001
  

       Dang it waugs - ya beat me to it.
thumbwax, Nov 13 2001
  

       Yes! If the voice is that of HAL 9000.
snarfyguy, Nov 13 2001
  

       The dishwasher {gargles}.
phoenix, Nov 14 2001
  

       Like the telephone that screams on the old "Addams Family" T.V. show. Lexmark printers have a nice balance of canned voice (recording of some guy saying something about things not connected right etc. for major goofs, which is then fun to mock) and quiet, kind of bleeting 'uh-oh' sound when it's out of paper. I might just fling the old Panasonic dot matrix printer, which still works, into the river after hearing, one more time, its wood-burning shrill tone when it runs out of paper. Then the psychotic thing wads up the paper after being re-set.   

       I think you'd want some variety. I tried a noise scheme for my Windows PC based on cheap organ music, Laurel & Hardy, and Monty Python audio clips and it soon became tiresome. If I didn't know what I'd hear next, that might be fun.
entremanure, Nov 14 2001
  

       For best effect, PC sounds should be done with restraint. Not everything should make a noise. I log in to a welcome from The Big Bopper, I get laughed at by Nelson Muntz when things go wrong, my email arrives on a Monty Python arrow, and I log out to the laughter of Vincent Price.
DrBob, Nov 14 2001
  

       Maybe the appliance manufactures could give us the option of recording our own preferred sounds, ala certain mobile phones. I definitely like the idea of sounds other than beeps. I always end up shouting "OK, OK!" at my washing machine which beeps about five times to tell me its finished.
LardyBloke, Nov 14 2001
  

       My car talks, and I much prefer 'The lights are on' to 'Bing...bing...bing...bing...bing...bing' with no information as to WHAT is bitching.
StarChaser, Nov 15 2001
  

       Heh [DrBob], I get laughed at by Nelson Muntz when I start up. Yours is better, though.
snarfyguy, Nov 15 2001
  

       Cure for the problem: Just leave your automated world for better sounds.   

       What you do about the resulting Koan is up to you…as soon as you hear the sound, it is done.
reensure, Nov 16 2001
  

       I have a real problem with machines that beep at me. I so sympathize with Zaphod12 and his microwave which like mine, beeps when it's finished and then beeps EVERY THIRTY SECONDS UNTIL I HAVE TO LEAVE MY SEAT AND MISS THE START OF THE PROGRAMME I'VE BEEN WANTING TO SEE ALL WEEK! Sorry. I don't get that upset answering the phone to a friend who needs a chat, but a microwave that needs it's door opening?
wagster, Jun 05 2004
  

       I once played a pinball machine called "Future Spa" that sounded as if it had an orgasm whenever a ball dropped into a hole.
HappyZenWolf, Jun 06 2004
  
      
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