Speaking of sounds made by machines

Jeffrey S. Worley technoid6502 at gmail.com
Sat Feb 16 15:52:28 CST 2019

Of all machines I've used, the beloved Atari 8-bit is most vocal.  It
has the feature of 'i/o noise' by default.  It can be disabled with a
Poke, but every kind of io has distinctive sounds and actually
represents the data being sent/received.  If you disable it and crank
the volume on your TV, you can STILL hear it, but very muted.  I think
this feature was created to conceal this fact...

It isn't just the Atari8 that has this 'feature' in its muted version,
all of the RF-TV-type machines from the 80's produce it.  In theory, I
think you could snoop the actual data, Tempest-like, using some radio

One gets very attuned to the noise and can tell the type of data being
sent, (Text, vs Binary, for example) by ear.  Of course, tracking
noises from floppies and hard disks are also very useful indicators.

In the 90's I got the hpfs386 driver out of a warp server pack and hung
it on my warp 4 client.  I LOVED hearing it hit the drive at boot.  Boy
howdy what a performance increase that gave.

Best regards,


On Fri, 2019-02-15 at 12:00 -0600, cctalk-request at classiccmp.org wrote:
> Speaking of sounds made by machines

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