I pick up secret transmissions when I crouch under the table

The other day I attached a pair of cheap old speakers to the underside of my desk. It’s a nice, clutter-free way to get some more volume out of my laptop when I’m working there.

I was fiddling around with the volume today when I thought I heard some static that I hadn’t noticed before. So I leaned under the desk, and the instant I touched the volume knob, the noise resolved into a faint voice. Eureka! I have discovered radio.

Presumably the volume potentiometer is so poorly insulated that it acts as a radio coil. I pick up ESPN talk radio (AM 1330) around 50% volume, but haven’t found any other stations yet. It is not a very practical arrangement for casual listening, since it is barely audible and so difficult to tune, but I am inordinately pleased with this serendipitous receiver. Radio is such a straightforward technology that it happens spontaneously. Chew on that, internet!

Posted on Tuesday, March 6th, 2007.

2 Responses to “I pick up secret transmissions when I crouch under the table”

Posted by UBILL on Thursday, March 8th, 2007 at 5:27 AM.

Hey, your Uncle J.could always do the same thing if he stuck a Q-tip in his ear and opened his mouth. While the family always attributed his ability to a heavier than normal concentration of metals in his cranial structure, your theory of poor insulation seems just as viable. Vehicle note-While I’m sure you have a clear picture of the final look of your 47, check out “calgaryroadsterpickup” on Flickr, it’s a trip if you haven’t already seen it.

Posted by Jim on Thursday, March 8th, 2007 at 8:51 AM.

Hey, I found those photos and then followed them to http://www.1149.ca/. The site has a cockpit video from a speed run. That thing is almost as fast as my truck!

In fact I haven’t yet decided on the final style for the car, so idea submissions are welcome. Incidentally, I am hoping to get it home this weekend. It’s been too inclement the past few weekends, but if I wait too long the yard leading up to the barn will just be a muddy mess and I’ll have to wait even longer. So we’ll see how it goes.