'Paranormal State' Ad Billboard Makes You Hear Voices

The outdoor billboard that displays an ad for Paranormal State, a ghost-themed series premiering on A&E this week, uses special technology to transmit sound so close to you that you think its inside your head.


(Paranormal State ad makes you hear voices)

As you walk by, the sound of a woman's voice whispers "Who's that? Who's there?... It's not your imagination." Advertisers describe it as a "chilling message."

The technology is created by Holosonic; the device is effectively an "audio spotlight" that can project sound literally right into your ears.

Previously, this technology had been used in places like museums or libraries; it creates an isolated experience while not disturbing those in the general area.

I'm guessing some readers might be disturbed by the idea of an ad that is beamed right at them as they walk down the sidewalk. However, cheerful Joe Pompei, president and founder of Holosonics, knows you'll come to love the technology:

"If you really want to annoy a lot of people, a loudspeaker is the best way to do it," he said. "If you set up a loudspeaker on the top of a building, everybody's going to hear that noise. But if you're only directing that sound to a specific viewer, you're never going to hear a neighbor complaint from street vendors or pedestrians. The whole idea is to spare other people."

"There's going to be a certain population sensitive to it. But once people see what it does and hear for themselves, they'll see it's effective for getting attention," Mr. Pompei said.

I find myself wondering if perhaps there will be an increase in the number of people who check themselves into mental health services for a quick schizophrenia check-up.

Take a look at this amusing and descriptive video about audio spotlight technology. You can get some idea of what it's like by checking out this google video - Paranormal State sonic wallscape ad video.

Update 14-Dec-2007: It occurs to me that there is a pretty good sf precursor to this device - the subliminal billboards from J.G. Ballard's 1963 story The Subliminal Man:

End update.

Listen carefully, and you may hear one of these stories recommend themselves to your attention:

Via Advertising Age.

Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 12/13/2007)

Follow this kind of news @Technovelgy.

| Email | RSS | Blog It | Stumble | del.icio.us | Digg | Reddit |

Would you like to contribute a story tip? It's easy:
Get the URL of the story, and the related sf author, and add it here.

Comment/Join discussion ( 26 )

Related News Stories - (" Culture ")

BrainNet Triple Telepathic Gaming Threat
'In the gloomy half-darkness the three idiots sat babbling.' Philip K Dick, 1956.

Project Dylan - Amazon's Voice-Activated Wearable That Recognizes Human Emotions
Life imitates anime art.

Kazahk Ironist Protester Arrested For Blank Sign Protest
'...a man carried a white rectangular sign, blank on both sides.' - Larry Niven, 1972.

Bitcoin Surges Again, To $7,000
'... electronic, private cash, unbacked by any government, untraceable, completely anonymous.' - Bruce Sterling, 1994.

 

Google
  Web TechNovelgy.com   

Technovelgy (that's tech-novel-gee!) is devoted to the creative science inventions and ideas of sf authors. Look for the Invention Category that interests you, the Glossary, the Invention Timeline, or see what's New.

 

 

 

 

 

Current News

Michelin Self-Sealing Tires On Ford's Explorer
'...a seal of compressed plastifoam to save the air.'

Mushroom Eats Plastic, Saves Planet
Fungus Amongus, SaveUs!

Juggalo Face Paint Disrupts Facial Recognition
'... designed to foil facial recognition systems.'

Mojipic Smart Voice Vehicle Emojis
KITT, what's your response?

Unusual Twist On Woman Dates Robot
'My hearing, vision and awareness went along with that excellent imitation of a young Adonis...'

BrainNet Triple Telepathic Gaming Threat
'In the gloomy half-darkness the three idiots sat babbling.'

AVAS Noisemakers Required For EVs By EU
'...a sound tape to supply the noise of a soi-disant "[internal combustion]" engine...'

Pun Generation Via Neural Nets
'You said you wanted him to be able to distinguish between laugh-power in different gags...'

Blood Battery Robotic Fish
'With one fluid motion, it surged forward, plunged, and was gone.'

Lightyear One Solar-Powered Electric Car (Design By Heinlein)
'It drew its power from six square yards of sunpower screens on its low curved roof.'

'Agression Detectors' Don't Work When Spying On Students
'The professional agitators had also learned how to modulate their voices below the danger level...'

Mining Of Golden Asteroid Foretold In 1898 Science Fiction
'This must be a golden planet—this little asteroid.'

Miners! NASA Wants To License RASSOR Excavator
'The borers had been dismantled and packed away.'

Bee+ Robobee Now With Four Wings
'It was a tiny thing, scarcely more than an inch and a half in length...'

CNSILK Robotic Spider Builder
'We could certainly spin a web right through the Solar System, if we can think of a good use for one.'

Starshade Will Help Space Telescope To Search For Exoplanets
'When it found planetary systems in its field, automatically shifted upon them a higher powered telespectroscope ...'

More SF in the News Stories

More Beyond Technovelgy science news stories

Home | Glossary | Invention Timeline | Category | New | Contact Us | FAQ | Advertise |
Technovelgy.com - where science meets fiction™

Copyright© Technovelgy LLC; all rights reserved.