Monday, October 3

Why Janet Jackson had the power to crash computers | Digital Trends Spanish

A curious story was presented by Microsoft through the author and programmer Raymond Chen, who related how Janet Jackson was able to block the system of Windows Xp when you play your songRhythm Nation«.

“I would not have wanted to be in the laboratory that they must have created to investigate this problem. It is not an artistic judgment. One discovery during the investigation is that playing the music video also crashed some of its competitors’ laptops. And then they discovered something extremely strange: playing the music video on a laptop caused a nearby laptop to crash, even though that other laptop was not playing the video!” Chen said.

Why was this happening?

It turns out that the song contained one of the natural resonant frequencies for the 5400 rpm model of portable hard drives that they and other manufacturers used.

However, Microsoft did not share what the frequencies were, and it is difficult to identify as hard drives vibrate between 0 and 5,000 Hz, although there are certain peaks at 12.5, 87.5, 1100, 1450, 1700, 1850 Hz.

The manufacturer fixed the issue by adding a custom filter in the audio pipeline that would detect and remove offending frequencies during audio playback.

“And I’m sure they put a digital version of a ‘Do Not Remove’ sticker on that audio filter. (Although I am concerned that in the many years since the fix was added, no one remembers why it is there. Hopefully, their laptops still don’t carry this audio filter to protect against damage to a hard drive model that no longer are using)”, closes Chen.

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