Scientists Create Gun That Physically Stops You From Talking

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Scientists Create Gun That Physically Stops You From Talking

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Doom's BFG makes way for Japan's STFU

If you're like me, by this point in time you've probably already accumulated a long list of people who you wish you could just magically stop from ever speaking again. People like my Uncle Mortimer, that needling Protoss guy, and for those of you still trying to maintain the fašade of the Matrix, Thomas A. Anderson. Well, good news, everyone! A scrappy team of researchers has just designed a weapon that physically stops its victims from speaking, and all of our evil dreams can finally come true (assuming we can get within 100 feet of the loudmouths). Thanks, Japan!

The gun, called the "SpeechJammer" (because everybody knows that hip scientists don't use the spacebar), was developed at the National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology in Japan. And while the effect it produces sounds a bit science-fictiony, the mechanics behind it are actually quite simple to grasp. Basically, when we speak normally (which is to say, without weird futuristic sonic weapons in our face), we don't simply project noise by moving our lips and tongue while pushing out air. That's part of it, sure, but we also use our ears to actively listen to our words to guide our speech. This is part of the reason why deaf people often sound different than those who can hear.

To describe it simply, the SpeechJammer is a speaker and a microphone, both designed to accurately target a small cone of direct sound. As it "listens" to its victim, it quickly projects the words back at him or her with a small delay of two hundred milliseconds, creating what nerds call "Delayed Auditory Feedback," and what boring people call "annoying echoes that make me sound funny." It may not seem like much, but it's enough to jumble up even the stoutest of would-be Ciceros.

According to the team who put this 1984 2012 wonder together, their purpose was twofold. The first was for use in what the public comfortably considers "quiet spaces," like libraries and movie theaters. The second was to disarm "louder, stronger" voices from dominating conversations.

"We have to establish and obey rules for proper turn-taking when speaking," the paper explaining the SpeechJammer reads, "However, some people tend to lengthen their turns or deliberately interrupt other people when it is their turn in order to establish their presence rather than achieve more fruitful discussions. Furthermore, some people tend to jeer at speakers to invalidate their speech."

So, essentially, they invented it so people would be forced into polite conversational tactics at gunpoint. Nice.

Source: ExtremeTech.com

Thanks to Nick Burch for the tip!

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If it relies on a mental glitch then chances are that at some point people are going to be able to overcome it and render this thing even more useless.

Judging from the title, I was expecting a gun that fires gag balls at people. I guess this works too.

Wow. That second last paragraph really drives home the point that this is a Japanese invention.

Mike Kayatta:
According to the team who put this 1984 2012 wonder together...

I see what you did there.

OT: I'm not even sure I understand how this works... so it just echoes the voice of the speaker? Does that stop them speaking simply because they can't comprehend their own words then? That would mean the actual stopping part would be entirely voluntary on the speaker's part.

Still quicker to just shoot them.

(I don't support the act of shooting people.)

Hmm, this reminds me of an old (fictional) tv series that was on years ago. In one of the episodes they had some sort of device that, although not actually stopping people from talking, basically neatralised the sound coming out of their mouth. Can't remember the pseudoscience behind it (or if there was any :)) but this sounds just like the thing.

They actually made a gun that can kill freedom of speech. I see no way this can be missused in the wrong hands. Nope, nothing comes to mind, not a single thing.

and here I though it would use noise cancellation

hit their voice with the opposite soundwave and it cancels it out, while they can still talk, the sound won't make it to you, or it'll be significantly reduced

So they've managed to replicate having a kid brother and put it in a box.

Despair beckons.

I never thought I would say this so enthusiastically, but....

"Thank you god.... or Japan!!"

Fox News better hope I never get my hands on that gun.

DVS BSTrD:
Fox News better hope I never get my hands on that gun.

Could you imagine if this could somehow be built into every public debate? I would actually enjoy the American primaries! (or whatever they're called)

Every stand-up comic in the world will want one of these.

I can imagine this at the Oscars.

A gun that stops you from talking? If you use a normal gun properly, it already does that.

Joking aside, this sounds pretty interesting.

DVS BSTrD:
Fox News better hope I never get my hands on that gun.

Actually, we already have a gun that can shut people from Fox News up. No seriously! We can go to any electronic store and pick it up for 10 dollars (or around that range). Its cheap and doesn't hurt them at all, and it will shut them up every time! Its called a remote control.

On-topic: I'm not sure how the technology actually works, but maybe a visual example (like a youtube video) might help explain it. If this works, I would love to have one of those around the house. >.>

Of course, now that this exists, there will always be some asshole who uses it attempting to silence public entertainment.
(street performers, theaters, concerts and the like)

I have a gun that can do that. Its called a shotgun

As great as the invention seems to be, there is also so much misuse it can do if it gets into the hands of the public. At least, imo anyway.

For science.
You monster!

Ddgafd:
Judging from the title, I was expecting a gun that fires gag balls at people. I guess this works too.

Toombs approves +4

OT: I appreciate the jokes, especially

Mike Kayatta:
Doom's BFG makes way for Japan's STFU

and

Mike Kayatta:
According to the team who put this 1984 2012 wonder together,

I see what you did there, it was quite clever.

Captcha - The beernaPl
Interesting invention, but is it beer + pineapple, or beer + apple? The world may never know!

s_h_a_d_o:
For science.
You monster!

Japanese Science.
We do what we must
Because
We can.
For the good of All of Us
Except the ones who are dead.
But there's no sense crying over every mistakes,
We'll just keep on trying till we run out of cake,
And the science gets done
And we make a neat gun
For the people who are
Still Alive.

Torrasque:

DVS BSTrD:
Fox News better hope I never get my hands on that gun.

Could you imagine if this could somehow be built into every public debate? I would actually enjoy the American primaries! (or whatever they're called)

Is it sad that this was my first thought for a legitimate use of this thing?

"mr. president, what are you going to do about all the loopholes big companies are able to use to avoid being taxed?"
"corporations are a very integral part of our..." /speechjammed
"mr. president, let me ask that question again, and maybe you can give a real answer this time"

Seriously. that would be the best use for this thing ever.

Some people in teamspeak do this unintentionally. while it does get annoying at first and interrupt your normal speaking patterns, all you really have to do is purposefully tone it out and possibly speak with your mouth open a little wider.

This can't work that well.

It look me a few tries, but I figured out how to over come this...

FANS...talking in to them that is.

Frizzle:

Torrasque:

DVS BSTrD:
Fox News better hope I never get my hands on that gun.

Could you imagine if this could somehow be built into every public debate? I would actually enjoy the American primaries! (or whatever they're called)

Is it sad that this was my first thought for a legitimate use of this thing?

"mr. president, what are you going to do about all the loopholes big companies are able to use to avoid being taxed?"
"corporations are a very integral part of our..." /speechjammed
"mr. president, let me ask that question again, and maybe you can give a real answer this time"

Seriously. that would be the best use for this thing ever.

Lol, that would be so awesome. Politicians would actually have to know what they are talking about! That would certainly thin the herd, especially American politics.

If this truly is a weapon, in America would it be protected under the 2nd Amendment or prohibited under the 1st Amendment?

Personally, I think it would be a good way of non-violently combating WBC rallies and the like, allowing them their right to protest but saving everyone else the displeasure of having to hear their hate speech.

Mike Kayatta:
The first was for use in what the public comfortably considers "quiet spaces," like libraries and movie theaters. The second was to disarm "louder, stronger" voices from dominating conversations.

And the very first time an enforced quiet zone causes someone to die due to being unable to call for help you'll see the lawsuits spring up like maggots from rotten meat.

So the Cone of Silence is real? :DDDDD

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Because sometimes saying shut up isn't enough and plan B can lead to charges of assault.

Cool! But give it a funnier name. And make a gun that turns things into chickens.

s_h_a_d_o:
Bravo!

*shrug* I did what I must, because I could.

Thank you, thank you, I'll be here till you all enjoy the taste of deadly neurotoxin!
After that...who knows? I might take up a hobby.

Reanimating the dead, maybe.

It's cool, but something that is both rife for abuse and seems like it would be prevented from use in pretty much every civilized nation on the planet.

That said, I expect it's going to be reduced in size and put to use somewhere, I can see quite a few situations where covert ops and dirty tricks operations would love to get their hands on this. From now on we're going to have to wonder whenever a politician flubs or has an odd break in his speech or whatever because I could really see this being used to sabotage political careers in nations where public speaking to gather a support base is a big deal.

Cool expierment. As someone that's accidentally been on the receiving end of this effect (we were testing a streaming set up, but you ended up hearing yourself on a delay) it's incredibly jarring and very hard to keep a train of though going.

Though a few of the doom and gloomers here are failing to account for the fact that you need to be able to hear this device.

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