Andrew Pollack's Blog

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What if it all just goes quiet?

By Andrew Pollack on 01/31/2008 at 05:41 PM EST

On February 17, 2009 all the analog TV signals transmitted in the US are scheduled to go dark. After that time, its digital or nothing. Just consider for a second, how few of us have ever lived in a place where we were not under constant full time exposure to transmissions measured in thousands or even tens of thousands of watts from the analog TV stations at VHF radio frequencies.

Just consider this for a second. What if they shut all the stations down, and a whole bunch of stuff that we had no idea was connected to this ambient transmission all around us suddenly stopped working -- or started working better. What if all of a sudden millions of people with sleep disorders were suddenly symptom free? Worse, what if all of us that sleep just fine, suddenly couldn't because we'd become attuned like to a noise we can't really hear?

Think of the possibilities? What if it turns out that for decades the extra RF noise in the background has been making us smarter? Dumber? Taller? What if there was a virus that spread globally years ago, and the only thing holding it back is the RF noise? Maybe, on February 18, 2009 we'll all become zombies.

There are  - loading -  comments....

re: What if it all just goes quiet?By Rick Wofford on 01/31/2008 at 05:57 PM EST
When does the movie come out?
re: What if it all just goes quiet?By Vitor Pereira on 01/31/2008 at 06:27 PM EST
Don't worry, whoever wins the auction going on (probably Google) will start
using the frequency spectrum currently being used by analog TV for cell phones.
The noise is staying.
sure, but not right away.By Andrew Pollack on 01/31/2008 at 08:54 PM EST
Also, keep all those old tv tuners. Synergy being what it is, it will probably
make economic sense to divy up some of that space in the same "channel" ranges
since all that broadcasting and transmission gear already exists.

In that case, old tv tuners may make great hack platforms. Who knows what
googlenet might look like on what used to be channel 3. Noise? Snow? Secret
sideband images MEANT for tv sets (how cool would that be?)
re: What if it all just goes quiet?By John Vaughan on 02/01/2008 at 12:24 PM EST

dumber AND taller, apparently. so maybe we'll get shorter and smaller? pretty
soon rockie, duffert, and joe litton will have a lot of company.

if we do become zombies, i've got dibs on joe's brain. he's local after all.
re: What if it all just goes quiet?By John Vaughan on 02/01/2008 at 12:27 PM EST
ack, shorter and *smarter*.

it'll be nice when that signal goes away. i'll finally be able to ditch the
tinfoil hat that i obviously forgot to wear today.
re: What if it all just goes quiet?By Joe Litton on 02/01/2008 at 01:03 PM EST
Hey jonvon, whaddya mean I'm loco? Sure mental illness runs in the family, but
I'm sane, and so is everyone living in my head.

Oh. Wait a minute. You said 'local'. And there is that one dude in the way back
of my head who's a bit sketchy.

But hey! What if those signals go quiet and all of a sudden we find that we're
all much more intuitive, that the we no longer find the middle finger to be the
most active part of our bodies whilst driving, that the urge to consume more
and more suddenly ....goes away?

re: What if it all just goes quiet?By Duffbert on 02/01/2008 at 02:25 PM EST
Or maybe all those "enhancement products" will be unnecessary... :)
re: What if it all just goes quiet?By Paul Gagnon on 02/02/2008 at 05:29 PM EST

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