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Microsoft Hires Rocker To Record Windows Vista Sounds

Noted electronic musician Robert Fripp has been tapped by Microsoft to record the sounds that will be used in its upcoming Windows Vista operating system.

Alexander Wolfe

January 9, 2006

1 Min Read

British 1960s art-rocker Robert Fripp has been tapped by Microsoft to record the sounds which will be used in Windows Vista.

Fripp, who was a co-founder of the influential band King Crimson and has also worked with Peter Gabriel and Talking Heads, recently spent some time at Microsoft's Redmond, Wash.campus "recording the various sounds we'll all hear in Windows Vista," according to a video posted on Microsoft's MSDN Channel 9 Web site.

Fripp is an electric guitarist noted for his ability to generate futuristic, electronic sounds from his instrument. From the evidence on the video posted on Microsoft's Web site, "Behind the scenes at [the] Windows Vista recording session," he's shooting for aural effects that wouldn't have been out of place in the movie "2001: A Space Odyssey".

"They don't just want it to look good, they want it to sound good, too," said Joe Wilcox, senior analyst at JupiterResearch. "Why have the boring PC 'beep' when even the basic sounds of the operating system can be an experience?"

This isn't the first time Microsoft has aimed at cutting edge sounds. Electronic rock pioneer Brian Eno created many of the tones used in Windows 95. Microsoft also spent millions of dollars to license the Rolling Stones song "Start Me Up" for use in its ads promoting Windows 95.

"From a rocker perspective, it [hiring Fripp] does show the age of some of the people working on this project," Wilcox said.

About the Author(s)

Alexander Wolfe

Contributor

Alexander Wolfe is a former editor for InformationWeek.

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