Janet Jackson’s “Rhythm Nation” Causes Older Laptops To Crash Due To “Natural Resonant Frequencies”

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Microsoft’s principal software engineer, Raymond Chen, explained the phenomena in a recent blog post.

It’s pretty hard to deny the star power of R&B vocalist Janet Jackson, but did you know that one of her 1989 songs has allegedly been causing older laptops to crash? Earlier this month, Microsoft’s principal software engineer, Raymond Chen, explained the phenomena in a blog post.

“The song contained one of the natural resonant frequencies for the model of 5400 rpm laptop hard drives that they and other manufacturers used,” he wrote on Tuesday (August 16), speaking on the track “Rhythm Nation.”

According to Chen, the frequency causes laptops to crash after playing the audio, similarly to how glass shatters when exposed to certain pitches.

“The manufacturer worked around the problem by adding a custom filter in the audio pipeline that detected and removed the offending frequencies during audio playback,” he went on, breaking down how a solution was created before joking, “I would not have wanted to be in the laboratory that they must have set up to investigate this problem. Not an artistic judgement.”

In conclusion, Chen expressed hope that “laptops are not still carrying this audio filter to protect against damage to a model of hard drive they are no longer using.”

Janet Jackson attends the 2022 Rose Ball — PLS Pool/Getty Images

Elsewhere in the news, earlier this summer Janet Jackson made a seriously impressive comeback with her performance at Essence Fest 2022.

Fans were pleased to see the 56-year-old pull out some deep cuts from her discography, which she paired with her greatest hits and showstopping choreography to generate the performance of a lifetime – read more about that here


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