stories The Shouter Series

The Shouter

First part of a short story about what may have been, and the dangers of the… ahem… young scientists competition

‘That’s like a mule kickin ya’. ‘Jasus, its makin me feel sick’.

Dermot and Declan, one time participants in the annual ‘Young scientist competition’ held every year in Dublin, Ireland; unwittingly experimenting on themselves with a new speaker design…

‘You know regular speakers, they use elastic to bounce the cone back and forth’ Dermot wondered one day while not paying attention in Maths class, or was it Physics? ‘What if we, ya know, used a metal cylinder as a driver, and used an electromagnet to drive it in and out of a box’ sketch sketch sketch.

‘It would mean we could make it move very slowly even if it was small’. Declan, who knew about sound, was sceptical to say the least, but, did admit that the requirement of having a larger cone to vibrate more slowly to produce bass notes would not be required if one could maintain control of the objects position exactly; ‘We could even focus the output’.

Experimentation proceeded in the shed out the back of Declan’s house. This also happened to be the home of “Radio Wow”, the dance orientated pirate radio station blasting the airwaves (and many nearby unprotected electrical devices) ‘Wowing you out every Monday to Thursday after homework yowsa‘. While prototyping the new ‘speaker’ (at this point they wanted to call it a ‘Shouter’) with Massive Attack’s ‘Teardrop’; had made themselves feel very uncomfortable- ‘intestines weren’t built for shaking Dermot‘.

Success achieved, the Shouter could achieve any low frequency, and up to ultrasonic. The loudness was a function of how long the central cylinder was, and how much power they put into it.

With four of them stacked in a box, they could also make the sound pulse highly directional, and more importantly, focused.

Cue the event, Dermot and Declan set up their display at the Young Scientists. Sleepless nights proceeded, dreaming of just how impressed everyone would be, not just of the ‘Shouter’ as it was officially named, but also of their amazing choice of music which which they would demo it! Declan, who knew about sound, had worked on the playlist all week. Dermot, had thought just how impressed all the female young scientists might be, and did no work at all.

They were asked to turn it down after approximately 47 seconds.

The organisers were not impressed. Dermot and Declan were not impressed. The ‘growing edible mushrooms on poop’ young scientists from the stand directly across from them were not impressed; they were also quite pungent having gotten quite the fright as ‘Whole lot of Rosie’ by ACDC accidentally focussed on them while they were in the middle of a particularly delicate part of their display setup.

To be continued….. and perhaps edited….

The Shouter (2)

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