Don’t play Janet Jackson’s 1989 Rhythm Nation song on your laptop, as it will crash some models

Don’t Call on Miss Jackson: 1989 hit song Rhythm Nation may crash some laptop models because the melody has the same frequency as some hard drives emit

  • Janet Jackson’s 1989 song Rhythm Nation is a security breach because it crashes laptops
  • The problem is a unique frequency in the song that matches the natural frequency of some older hard drives
  • The issue, however, is a low threat as it has occurred with older models

Janet Jackson’s 1989 hit Rhythm Nation has a funky beat that makes listeners want to dance, but the melody contains a unique frequency that crashes some older laptops.

The problem was revealed by Microsoft’s principal software engineer, Raymond Chen, on his blog The old new thingwhere he states that the frequency of the song matches the frequency emitted by the laptop hard drive, which is called the resonance frequency, which is the natural frequency of an object.

Laptop crashing is similar to how a glass breaks when exposed to certain sounds – the sound emitted from a source carries the invisible vibration through the air and onto the glass.

The unique frequency of Jackson’s song was discovered by an unnamed “large computer manufacturer” who also found laptops near the computer being played.

Microsoft declared Rhythm Nation a security vulnerability labeled CVE-2022-38392.

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Janet Jackson’s (pictured) 1989 song Rhythm Nation is considered a security vulnerability because it will crash laptops when playing

“A colleague of mine shared a story about Windows XP product support. A major computer manufacturer discovered that playing Janet Jackson’s ‘Rhythm Nation’ music video would crash certain laptop models,” Chen describes. in the blog published on Wednesday.

“I wouldn’t have wanted to be in the lab they had to set up to investigate this issue. Not an artistic judgement.

However, Unmanned Manufacturing discovered that Jackson’s song also crashed laptops made by its competitors, BeepComputer reports

“Playing the video clip on a laptop caused a laptop sitting nearby to crash, even though that other laptop was not playing the video,” according to the post.

This is because the song (pictured is a snippet from the music video) has the same frequency as what some older hard drives output.

This is because the song (pictured is a snippet from the music video) has the same frequency as what some older hard drives output.

“It turns out the song contained one of the natural resonant frequencies for the 5400 RPM model of laptop hard drives that they and other manufacturers were using.”

The issue was resolved after the makers added a “custom filter in the audio pipeline that detected and removed offending frequencies during audio playback”.

How Frequencies Break Glasses, Shake Buildings, and Crash Laptops

All objects have natural vibrations based on their size and shape, which are not normally felt by people, called their natural or resonant frequency.

When these objects are subjected to vibrations or external forces at a frequency equal to or close to their natural frequency, these objects often vibrate very strongly.

This process, known as resonance, can cause a weak vibration to cause a strong vibration on a larger object.

A small-scale example would be someone breaking a wine glass while singing at exactly the right note, its resonant frequency.

In buildings or on bridges, this can happen when people on or inside the structures synchronize their movements.

And it crashes laptops.

“And I’m sure they put a digital version of a ‘Do Not Delete’ sticker on that audio filter (although I’m concerned that since adding the workaround no one remembers why he’s there,” Chen explained in the blog post.

“I hope their laptops no longer have this audio filter to protect against damage to a hard drive model they no longer use.)”

Not only are the frequencies known to break glasses, but last year they shook a giant 980-foot-tall skyscraper in China last year.

On May 18, the SEC Plaza in China’s Futian District in Shenzhen began to sway, forcing occupants to quickly evacuate.

Officials were baffled by the event, as no earthquakes were detected.

Lu Jianxin, chief engineer at China Construction Science and Industry Corp, suggested the rare phenomenon was caused by mechanical resonance, which occurs when a structure’s natural oscillations are accompanied by an external force.

He told the Shenzhen Special Zone Daily: “If there was no earthquake today, it would be unusual for SEG Plaza to experience such a situation.”

“Judging from the information currently available, it could be an accidental frequency coincidence, i.e. a resonance.”

The local weather report indicated a wind speed of 27 mph at the time, which should not have caused such a problem for the building.

“After checking and analyzing data from various earthquake monitoring stations across the city, there was no earthquake in Shenzhen today,” the statement said.

“The cause of the shaking is being verified by various departments.”