I hadn’t realised Brian Eno wrote the Windows startup sound. Wow. 43 folders has a link to an interview with him:

The thing from the agency said, ìWe want a piece of music that is inspiring, universal, blah- blah, da-da-da, optimistic, futuristic, sentimental, emotional,î this whole list of adjectives, and then at the bottom it said ìand it must be 3 1/4 seconds long.î

I thought this was so funny and an amazing thought to actually try to make a little piece of music. Itís like making a tiny little jewel.

Realising I couldn’t remember what the Windows startup sound sounded like, I hunted around and found this rather thorough discussion of it, with a sound file, too, though the author only thinks that this is the version of the Windows sound composed by Eno. The Mac startup sound was created by a sound engineer, not by a professional composer. You can read about the origins of many more tiny yet familiar sounds at Music Thing.

2 thoughts on “startup sound composers

  1. infobong.com

    tiny little jewels

    Jill points to an interview with Brian Eno where he discusses his process creating the Windows 95 startup tone. According to Eno, Microsoft’s agency told him that they wanted a piece that expressed a variety of intangible qualities – in…

  2. Jose Angel

    Well there are several Mac startup sounds, rather more Beethovenish than Enish, all of them, and they seem to be moving towards ever more solemn minor keys…

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