Monday, August 25, 2008

Technology: Binaural Beats

Not a day goes by without some slick salesman (or greasy sales-woman!) offering a new solution in a box. Solution for what, you ask? Oh, anything, really. Being overweight, being forgetful, being gullible. Most importantly, being willing to do nothing at all to get better. Beyond typing in your credit card, that is.

Have you ever found yourself saying, "Hey stupid! I need to find a catch-all, cure-all, do-all that works without all that work!" Well, get on your knees and thank your own personal Jesus, because we've finally got some snake oil you don't even have to swallow!

"Binaural Beats", a technology guaranteed* to sharpen your mind, ease depression, quell PMS, cure alcoholism, and ease depression brought on by a sharpened mind, PMS, or alcoholism. For the uninitiated, Binaural Beats are the vibrations, or "beats", that you hear when there are two frequencies that are very close to one another being played simultaneously. Other names for this phenomenon include "tuning your guitar" and "Jesus, Matt, get a friggin tuner already!"

Seriously, Matt.

Though knowledge of binaural "beats" has been around since the 1830s, it's taken seventy years for the fine hucksters of The Internet to exploit it for us. Frequencies are available from one such vendor, (yes, a dot-us web address) for their mood-altering benefits - relaxation, alertness, etc. Meanwhile, a competing outfit, (note the "r") specializes in tones of a more... narcotic nature. The nice thing about these "doses" is that they combine all of the risks of buying drugs—sketchy transaction, no guaranteed effects, low return on investment—without all those nasty benefits.

And the comma-laden disclaimer at i-doser is quick to remind you of that.
"I-Doser makes no medical, psychological, physical, or otherwise, claims to the effectiveness of the I-Doser Application, Simulation CDs and MP3s, or it’s included or purchased doses..."
Once again, marketing goons have taken it upon themselves to try and make money off of a scientist's findings that Things Occur Between Two Objects, Probably. (The old TOBTOP theory.)

An actual scientist witnessing the TOBTOP effect.

In related news**, someone took the time to coin the term Cocktail Party Effect, the incredible phenomenon that happens when someone is talking to you and you are listening to them. I shouldn't joke, because this is something I actually have trouble with, as illustrated in this strangely accurate, hardly invented scenario:

A: "Dowd, can I get you another drink?"

B: "Hm?"

A: "I said, would you like another?"

B: "Hm, I doubt it. He doesn't look like my brother... And now that I look a little closer, it's a girl."

A: "I say, do you think we have TIME for another ROUND?"

B:"Well, I hardly think that'll be necessary. She's still alive, you know. Can't go putting people in the ground while they're still alive. It's uncouth."

A: "... "

B: "...not to mention the fact that it's difficult. Sure, the mass graves are easy, but you've seen those zombie movies. They fight back, the buggers."

A: "Fine, I'll be right back."

B: "They sure do."

-Thanks to the Jerusalem Post for bringing this to our attention. Full story here.

*Guarantee valid for store credit only.

1 comment:

Ro-Beast Rollie said...

While it lasted, TOBTOP was incredible. Probably.