Pixel Envy

Written by Nick Heer.

The Mechanics and Meaning of That Dial-Up Modem Sound

Alexis Madrigal:

Of all the noises that my children will not understand, the one that is nearest to my heart is not from a song or a television show or a jingle. It’s the sound of a modem connecting with another modem across the repurposed telephone infrastructure. It was the noise of being part of the beginning of the Internet.

It was also the sound of the comforting reassurance that I wouldn’t be getting any phone calls for the next hour.