Monday, February 06, 2012

What is it, R2?

I'm sitting here at the desk, and there's a faint, quick, "BeBeBeep!"

I am not familiar with this noise. It came from someplace close, as in "on the desk" close. It was very muted.

The eMac is off, and the batteries of the older iPod on the desk in front of me are flatter than Kansas and, besides, the iPod doesn't have any external speaker anyway. It didn't come from the speakers of VFTP Command Central, because it would have been louder, nor did it come from the cordless phone, because it is above my head level, perched atop VFTP Command Central's tower case.

That leaves my phone or my camera, both at my left elbow. It seemed too quiet for the phone, and I'm pretty sure that noise isn't in its repertoire, anyway; I've set all its verbal tics for when it gets updates or email or whatever. Maybe the camera needs charging... (Can anyone explain to my why an electronic device that is almost out of juice would waste its last precious electrons by making beeping noises?)

Note that this entire post would vary from complete science fiction to total gibberish as recently as ten or twenty years ago.

29 comments:

Anonymous said...

Perhaps roomie has derived inspiration from this cubicle warfare doomsday machine:

http://www.thinkgeek.com/gadgets/electronic/8c52/

Interesting review posted on that product.

Anonymous said...

"... would be vary ..."? I think you left a stray verb in there.

Joseph said...

A: So that the owner distracted by the computer, phone, TV, iPad and plethora of other geegaws will notice that said electronic doodad will soon become utterly useless.

You know, like when the cat meows for whatever reason those damnable creatures meow.

Tam said...

Anon 11:16,

Thank you!

It has been dragged out back and shot. :)

Bubblehead Les. said...

Smoke Detector nearby? Audio Notifications enabled on the Magic Elf Box?

Jake (formerly Riposte3) said...

"Did Threepio fall down the well again?"

Tam said...

I plugged a USB cord into the camera.

The noise hasn't repeated.

I am not 100% sure that those two things are related, but it seems plausible.

eeky said...

Relish that we are living in ... the future!

I know I do.

(Computer-created message shared on the global internet.)

Jenny said...

"Note that this entire post would vary from complete science fiction to total gibberish as recently as ten or twenty years ago. "

Last night we watched a DVD of a pretty recent TV show. First thought?

dang, this has to be old... that iPod's ancient.




amazing how fast some of this stuff moves.

Guffaw in AZ said...

Re: Jenny
I was watching a film on DVD the other night, and they had HUGE cell phones. And I had the same thought.
'Course I watched VERTIGO last night - no cellular telephones or computers anywhere!

Walt said...

I'm watching the DVDs of one of my favorite childhood TV series: The Six Million Dollar Man. Rotary-dial corded telephones...

HerrBGone said...

Walt, the only reason at least one of the corded phones around the HerrBGone Homestead isn't rotary dial (and a genuine antique at that...) is because 'pulse dial' isn't supported by Vonage. The Future(TM) has enough advantages to out weigh at least most of the deconveniences. Usually...

Borepatch said...

Can anyone explain to my why an electronic device that is almost out of juice would waste its last precious electrons by making beeping noises?

It was designed by the same guy who put the flashing "12:00" on everything.

Leatherwing said...

Earlier this morning, I heard a sound that sounded like a notification on my Android phone. I have not been able to find a new text message, email, voicemail, or anything else that would justify a notification. I also work in an office where almost everyone has androids, so it could have come from across the cubicle wall. But it sure is annoying, not knowing.

aepilot_jim said...

If you were in the middle of a lake drowning would you quietly go down or would you struggle?

NO! Do not go gentle into that good night! Rail! Rail against the dying of the light!

You go little camera!

wv: deflog srsly? How do you deflog someone?

Tam said...

"You go little camera!"

LOL! :D

That is now my phrase for the day.

David said...

I opened up my phone the other day, ignored the "battery low" warning that was on the screen and started to look up a phone number. Suddenly my phone tried to beep - but it went stone cold dead in mid-beep...

The teenaged girl sitting next to me leaned over my arm, looked at the phone in my hand, then turned to me with a sad little frown on her face and said "Awwww, now thats love. It gave it's all, trying to send you one last farewell beep."

Then she reverently took the phone from my hand, carefully folded it closed, placed it softly in my shirt pocket, gently patted it and told me - "you should treat it better than that."

Then her face and tone took on a hard sarcastic edge as she added "or else join the 21st century coach and occasionally plug the damned thing in so it will work when you need it."

Wraith said...

David got 0wnz0r3d. LOLZ.

;)

Woodman said...

Amazing how seldom you see cell phones or smart devices in movies though.

Think how quickly movies would end if they were available.

The first step in every plausible thriller/slasher/alien invasion movie has to be to stop standard communication methods. Or to put people where they can't use them. Every time I see a movie made after 2000 where at least half the people don't have cell phones I call bullshit.

OTOH, at least they don't have scenes like the ones in Swordfish with guys hacking into government sites with jail broken iPhones instead of random laptops.

I'd like to see a TEOTWAWKI scenario in a movie played out realistically with people who are halfway intelligent. Bug out bags for some, a trunk with gallon water jugs for a couple, cell phones being used in a not stupid way, solar panels for charges, a few totally unprepared people that aren't totally useless. And then don't have them threatening to shoot each other for half the movie.

Tim Ellwood said...

I worked for a while in my youth selling cars nobody bought (SAABs, Alfa's and Subarus). One Saturday when the service dept was closed. A Alfa owner came in with a haunted look on his face, his car was driving him nuts beeping. Having no customers a few of us went to help the poor soul. we tore though the car for an hour, checking everything and it's brother and were flummoxed. We finally parked it in the center of the service dept and closed all the doors for quiet. Someone with better hearing than I tracked it by ear to a travel alarm buried up under the passenger seat in the foam. It was set to go off during his commute twice a day, but the batteries were dying and it was sounding off every min or so. Someone did not like this guy. He did give us 100.00 for finding it, he looked like he was at his wit's end when he had rolled in.

Tim Ellwood said...

The last dealer he had taken it to looked for hours, then told him the fix was to "just turn up the radio, we can't find it"

Anonymous said...

If you step on a cat "just right", they will make little Beepbeepbee... Sounds. For a while. :D

And no, I'm not Frank.

Julie said...

David (1:31pm) - that's GOLD!

I must admit I drive my kids MAD by pointing out all old technology in films ...

ajdshootist said...

My hearing aid beebs at me about 15min before giving a longer beeeeb then all goes quite i now always carry spares.

Buzz said...

My cell does the same, as well as some old cameras.
My UPSs increase their beep frequency the closer they get to the last gasp, as a courtesy warning that my time is running short.

Eck! said...

I drive people mad by using old tech
and getting useful results with it.

I have a lot of old computer tech as in 12 years prior to PC (1981.

I also have glow in the dark radios,
Roommie should know them.

Eck!

Kristopher said...

I'm voting with anon 11:06 for the Annoyatron.

Lergnom said...

I have a lot of fun, mining the old storage areas at work and offering what I find to the much younger alpha geeks I hang out with. Our Mac User Group's webmaster thought I was offering him 5 1/4" floppies when I said I had some old floppy disks and could he use them. They were 8-inchers. I've never seen anyone do a triple take before. He swore he had working drives and thanked me profusely for them.

Jerry said...

+1 @ Borepatch. When I was first married, had one or two VCRs. My kid, Captain Sega, could re-program the damn things. Scary as hell.