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View Full Version : Windows Vista vs. Mac OS X: The Startup Sound Debate


MacBytes
Nov 15, 2006, 04:07 PM
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Category: Opinion/Interviews
Link: Windows Vista vs. Mac OS X: The Startup Sound Debate (http://www.macbytes.com/link.php?sid=20061115170713)
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Posted on MacBytes.com (http://www.macbytes.com)
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tk421
Nov 15, 2006, 05:16 PM
Interesting article. Interesting how empty some of the "features" of Vista are.
Ear candy. Key candy. Acronym candy. :)

My favorite part had to be this: The Berlin-based electronic pop group Transformer di Roboter (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Transformer_di_Roboter) created a
song using samples of Mac startup sounds. You can hear it here (http://www.transformerdiroboter.com/layerRechts/media/Stranger-in-moscow.mp3).

IJ Reilly
Nov 15, 2006, 05:35 PM
The Mac has never had a "startup sound" -- at least not in the way the article suggests. Both the Mac and PC have POST (power-on self-test) chimes. These are hardware based (stored in the boot ROM) and will be heard no matter which OS is installed on the machine, or even no OS. On PC hardware it's a beep and on the Mac it's been a bong, chord or chime at various times. The sound tells the user that the low-level hardware is functioning.

Now, what this article is referring to is the Windows "reward music" you hear when the OS boots, assuming that you haven't turned it off in the control panel. The MacOS has never included "reward music." I'd like to think this is because the Apple engineers understand that it's meaningless and of no actual value to user. It is as the article says, nothing more than "ear candy." It's a gee-gaw, a useless frill which apparently Microsoft has thought about deeply and seriously. This little fact tells us volumes about the different design philosophies of the two companies.

xUKHCx
Nov 15, 2006, 05:52 PM
The "my name is bob sound" * is really annoying, the only purpose i see it holds is to let the user know that it booted all the way and to let others know you are using windows


*My friend pointed this out and whenever i hear it i just chuckle to myself.

Blue Velvet
Nov 15, 2006, 06:02 PM
It is as the article says, nothing more than "ear candy." It's a gee-gaw, a useless frill ...



You can say what you like, but the Windows 95 sound is a masterpiece only because it was put together by Brian Eno. I'm not biased or anything, of course. ;)

But I genuinely like it. Its purpose may be a little silly but it's a lovely sound.


Q: How did you come to compose "The Microsoft Sound''?

A: The idea came up at the time when I was completely bereft of ideas. I'd been working on my own music for a while and was quite lost, actually. And I really appreciated someone coming along and saying, "Here's a specific problem — solve it.''

The thing from the agency said, "We want a piece of music that is inspiring, universal, blah- blah, da-da-da, optimistic, futuristic, sentimental, emotional,'' this whole list of adjectives, and then at the bottom it said "and it must be 3 1/4 seconds long.''

I thought this was so funny and an amazing thought to actually try to make a little piece of music. It's like making a tiny little jewel.

In fact, I made 84 pieces. I got completely into this world of tiny, tiny little pieces of music. I was so sensitive to microseconds at the end of this that it really broke a logjam in my own work. Then when I'd finished that and I went back to working with pieces that were like three minutes long, it seemed like oceans of time.

http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?file=/chronicle/archive/1996/06/02/PK70006.DTL

mainstreetmark
Nov 15, 2006, 07:16 PM
My favorite part is the 24 page word doc on the "hardware start button", which appears to me to be just the windows key with a circle around it. The doc includes renderings and measurements of the new key, and describes a bit that it'll be used to access the "Start" menu. Oh really!

http://download.microsoft.com/download/d/e/1/de1e0c8f-a222-47bc-b78b-1656d4cf3cf7/HardwareStartButtonV101.doc

thewhitehart
Nov 16, 2006, 09:36 AM
My favorite part is the 24 page word doc on the "hardware start button", which appears to me to be just the windows key with a circle around it. The doc includes renderings and measurements of the new key, and describes a bit that it'll be used to access the "Start" menu. Oh really!

http://download.microsoft.com/download/d/e/1/de1e0c8f-a222-47bc-b78b-1656d4cf3cf7/HardwareStartButtonV101.doc

Haha, Microsoft Leviticus™ How utterly idiotic!

0010101
Nov 16, 2006, 02:09 PM
I had a Sony Vaio years ago that had a 'Mac-esque' startup sound when you powered it on which I thought was kind of neat.. but I can't recall ever being impressed about it enough to tell anyone.

But the same goes for my Mac.. altho the IIci was the first Mac I ever had with the 'new' start chime.. the 'DAHHHH' instead of the old school Mac 'DONG' sound.. and I think I pointed it out to someone in the room when I first heard it.. like, "Hey! Check out this cool sound!" to which they looked at me like I was an idiot and went on with their business.

I don't recall what computer it was, but I did have one years ago that if it had a hardware problem, it would make a 'crunching glass' sound.

I honestly don't consider added or updated sounds to be any kind of added feature in an OS.. in fact, I rather prefer my Mac to be largely silent as it boots to the desktop.

But I will admit to manually installing the Moof and Wild Eep sounds on my OSX install. :)

Scruff
Nov 16, 2006, 02:30 PM
Interesting article. Interesting how empty some of the "features" of Vista are.
Ear candy. Key candy. Acronym candy. :)

My favorite part had to be this:

I have to agree, that song is great! :p

solvs
Nov 17, 2006, 08:07 AM
That weird sound of children laughing XP has, don't remember if it's the starting or stopping, is kinda annoying. Mostly because I hear it on so many other TV shows, movies, commercials, etc. Figured it was royalty free or something. Normally I like the sound of children's laughter.

Vista has some cool, ethereal stuff, but if they'd spend half of that effort on stability and interface, they'd have something.