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Combating Harassing Use of Mosquito Noise Device? 1059

amicold asks: "For a while now my neighborhood has had to deal with an elderly neighbor who has displayed a slightly paranoid attitude towards myself and the fellow younger-adults of the neighborhood, believing us to be attempting to harass him in our day-to-day activities. Recently, he installed a Mosquito ultrasonic noise device as an apparent attempt to 'get back at us' for our harassment. As the Mosquito emits a sound that's well out of his hearing range, he can't hear it, while most of the rest of the neighborhood is under 40 and can; at which point it's causing everyone a great deal of discomfort. Unfortunately, because the police also can't hear it, we can't get the authorities to do anything about it, leaving us empty-handed in our attempts at getting some peace and quiet back. What can we do to either help the police realize how disturbing this device is, or counteract it so that it's no longer disturbing us? And is this the first of what may be a growing trend of civilians using high-tech discomfort weapons as a method of neighborhood warfare?"
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Combating Harassing Use of Mosquito Noise Device?

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday August 05, 2006 @12:03AM (#15850645)
    You could start by getting off his damn lawn.
  • Simple (Score:5, Funny)

    by NitsujTPU ( 19263 ) on Saturday August 05, 2006 @12:05AM (#15850653)
  • by sockman ( 133264 ) on Saturday August 05, 2006 @12:06AM (#15850659)
    And record the "noise" phase shift it by 180, and play it on your stero. Viola, no mosquito.
  • You kids!! (Score:1, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday August 05, 2006 @12:06AM (#15850660)
    Get off my lawn!
  • by jpardey ( 569633 ) <> on Saturday August 05, 2006 @12:11AM (#15850681)
    If you can't get a young police officer, kidnap a young police officer's young child and strap him to your neighbour's lawn. This will give the police someone to trust, and will also get you away from the house for a few years.
  • Re:Try this (Score:3, Funny)

    by Frumious Wombat ( 845680 ) on Saturday August 05, 2006 @12:16AM (#15850697)
    Do it yourself. If you're annoying people, DIY Hendrix is better than recorded. Be sure to wear your American Flag suit when you step out on your back deck to serenade him. An old Heathkit amp with some bad solder joints for extra distortion will help as well.
  • by ivan256 ( 17499 ) on Saturday August 05, 2006 @12:16AM (#15850699)
    slice its power cord or something at 2AM in the morning

    Dispite the redundancy in there, I think that's a great idea! If you keep complaining about the damned thing after you've disabled it, he won't even know it's broken.
  • ideas (Score:3, Funny)

    by alienw ( 585907 ) <> on Saturday August 05, 2006 @12:19AM (#15850704)
    Well, if the cops don't care, you don't need to stick to legal means. I hear BB guns work pretty well for destroying plastic things. Paintball markers are also quite excellent for this purpose. Or use a nice big water gun on it. Of course, I recommend you just call the cops again. There are plenty of cops under 40.
  • Egg 'im (Score:5, Funny)

    by talkingpaperclip ( 952112 ) on Saturday August 05, 2006 @12:20AM (#15850706) Homepage
    Just egg his house. That will surely make him realize his immaturity and bring a swift end to his harassment.
  • by Mattintosh ( 758112 ) on Saturday August 05, 2006 @12:25AM (#15850730)
    Several (disjointed) ideas sprang to mind:

    1) Get a sound meter (dB meter, noise level meter, or whatever it's called where you are) and call the cops again. Show the meter to the officer.
    2) Buy big speakers and send some noise his direction that he CAN hear. I recommend NES chiptunes.
    3) Disconnect the device without his knowledge. He can't hear it, so he can't tell if it's working or not.
    4) Kick the neighbor in the nuts. If he gets angry, kick him in the nuts again. If he threatens you, proceed to #5.
    5) Shoot him. You didn't need the curmudgeonly bastard anyway. Take his stuff and tell his family he went on vacation to BFE. Be sure to dispose of his body properly - through a wood chipper, then burn the chunks. Invite other young neighbors over for BBQ. Display a big cookbook with a cover that says "To Serve Annoying Old Neighbors".

    (And just for the humor impaired, options 4 and 5 are not serious. I am not the voice in your head telling you to assault or kill your neighbor. That voice is named Larry. I'm Matt.)
  • I recognize this situation. The woman is a sociopath. She is doing all this to make people around her jump, for the purpose of her own amusement.

    There's really only one thing to do when faced with a sociopath, and that's to completely stay our of her life entirely. She's so completely emotionally different from you that she's practically not human. Really, her only purpose in life, the only way she can break the monotony of feeling only primitive emotions is to think of ways to make all the people around her jump.

    But since you don't have that option, you can at least fight back. This will NOT solve your problem because she can't stop what she's doing. But it'll be fun.

    I recommend that if she has a dog or cat, kill it, paint the inside of her car with the feces and blood, dump the organs down her chimney, and throw what's left through her front window. Let her stew on that a while. After she gets her car and house cleaned up, get a can of gas and burn them both to the ground. That's about what it's going to take to stop this old lady if she's truly a sociopath, short of putting her in the hospital or worse.

    If you're not willing or able to do this, then you really need to consider what you're going to do. Measured responses are going to be worse than doing nothing at all. Maybe you should disable her noisemaker device somehow. She can't hear it anyway, how will she know it's broken?

  • by CompotatoJ ( 848808 ) on Saturday August 05, 2006 @12:48AM (#15850807) Homepage
    You could try setting up a device (such as a stereo or computer speakers) which cancels out the noise which I believe is 17KHz. If you emit the exact opposite sound, they will cancel out each other. It uses the same principle as noise-cancelling headphones. I hope this ASCII drawing of how the waves will interact helps:
    Mosquito Wave: /^\/^\/^\

    Opposite Wave: \_/\_/\_/

    = Combination: ---------
  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday August 05, 2006 @12:49AM (#15850808)
    What redundancy? Dude, he should do it at 2AM in the night, when it's dark out. He'd get caught if he did it in the morning.
  • by Tal Cohen ( 4834 ) <[gro.2murof] [ta] [lat]> on Saturday August 05, 2006 @01:13AM (#15850872) Homepage
    Our neighbors are firing Katyusha rockets at us.
  • by Pig Hogger ( 10379 ) <`moc.liamg' `ta' `reggoh.gip'> on Saturday August 05, 2006 @01:23AM (#15850893) Journal
    I can relate...

    Two years ago, the building next to mine was being totally renovated (they gutted everything but the outside walls).

    And they had that big honking alarm that would go off each time a cat or a bird would go inside the structure.

    Of course, it went off at 2 in the morning many times.

    After a few weeks, we got to get pretty pissed at it, so I started to grab a pair of cutters, and enter the place despite it being barricaded (from the third floor, the balconies of the respective buildings are only 2 feet away). Then it's just a matter of finding the wire and snipping it.

    Of course, they would fix it, until the next snip...

    The last time I did it (at 3 in the morning), I was so pissed that I cut the wire in about 200 one inch long little sections. This must have drove the message home because that's the last time we heard the fucking alarm...

  • Do this (Score:5, Funny)

    by Kohath ( 38547 ) on Saturday August 05, 2006 @01:29AM (#15850918)
    Here's the plan:

    1. Spend the next 30-40 years breeding and training vicious attack dogs
    2. Now you're over 40 and can hear it any more. (Plus, everyone loves dogs -- bonus.)

    It's foolproof.
  • Re:Try this (Score:2, Funny)

    by fandog ( 900111 ) on Saturday August 05, 2006 @02:07AM (#15851006)
    an inventor who is marketing a device [snip] specifically desinged to be annoying to teenagers

    Gee, all you have to do is play light jazz to drive teenagers off... And that solution is <$10. Quite an invention that light jazz.

  • Shame (Score:2, Funny)

    by cachimaster ( 127194 ) on Saturday August 05, 2006 @02:36AM (#15851094)
    Dude! some crazy old man Pwned j00!! ROFL!
  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday August 05, 2006 @02:59AM (#15851166)
    Or use roundup on that lawn. I once attempted to spell out "JACKASS" across about 30x10 feet of someones front yard with round up. The idea was good but the implementation needed more oversight from someone that was not drinking heavily. The round up killed all of the grass exactly where we put it but apparently our placement of the letters was too close together. If you studied the final product after the roundup did its job, it looked more like random lines with only the SS part actually looking like real letters. I also spilled about a 1/2 gallon in my own yard when I was trying to screw the pump on the sprayer which left a huge spot as well.
  • by Scaba ( 183684 ) <joe.joefrancia@com> on Saturday August 05, 2006 @03:08AM (#15851187)

    Are you trying to say the phase-shifted noise of a Mosquito annoyancebot sounds like a viola?

  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday August 05, 2006 @03:39AM (#15851277)
    Excuse me, sir. I work for the Department of Redundancy Department, and I'm afraid I'm going to need to have to ask you to come with me over here. We've got a few questions to ask.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday August 05, 2006 @04:04AM (#15851332)
    ...they don't know his email address.
  • Re:OUCH! (Score:3, Funny)

    by Walt Dismal ( 534799 ) on Saturday August 05, 2006 @04:05AM (#15851335)
    What you might have been hearing was the ultrasonic alarm system. Apparently, in some stores and malls, the way the system was improperly installed was that the transducer was left on ALL the time, wired continuously on, and the normal mode of operation was merely to turn the alarm detection portion on at night and off in the morning upon entering. Bad dumb design. When I was in my 30s, some stores were painful to enter because of these. I discovered I could hear tones above 20KHz especially if they were at 110-120 dB levels, which these stupid transducers emitted. I'm over 50 now, and I can hear the mosquito tone easily too. I've always protected my hearing and avoided anything like loud rock concerts, and it seems to have paid off well. No, I'm not making this up or lying either.

    Also, pet stores should not ever have ultrasonic store alarms, because rodents can hear them and the sound is very painful. These will kill gerbils from stress. Disclosure: I am not a gerbil, descended from a gerbil, or use gerbils for unnatural purposes, at least not that often.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday August 05, 2006 @05:13AM (#15851436)
    You got the last line wrong:
    Mosquito Wave: /^\/^\/^\

    Opposite Wave: \_/\_/\_/

    Result: everyone's happy: \o/ \o/ \o/
  • by Ihlosi ( 895663 ) on Saturday August 05, 2006 @07:10AM (#15851625)
    You sir, who likes to call other people idiots, seem to lack a fundamental understanding of the relationship between frequency and wavelength, as well as the basics of using an internet search engine.

    And then there's people who lack the fundamental understanding that sound waves do not propagete at lightspeed.

  • Re:Try this (Score:4, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday August 05, 2006 @07:50AM (#15851703)
    The old don't tend to sleep well.
    The old are rumored to favor shotguns loaded with rock salt.
    The old are generally sympathetic figures to those of us who don't deal with them every day.

    You are a snot-nosed young'un who's hopping a fence at 3am with a deadly weapon, and just stupid enough to admit that you were planning to vandalize a particular old person's house.

    This could go very, very badly for you.

    I should know. I'm 35 and I already own the shotgun.

  • Re:Try this (Score:2, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday August 05, 2006 @08:16AM (#15851761)
    Simply unplug it and place it conveniently behind a tire of their car for safekeeping.
  • Who cares? (Score:2, Funny)

    by MikTheUser ( 761482 ) on Saturday August 05, 2006 @08:41AM (#15851809)
    This Slashdot story has more potential for talk about ardware hacking, physics babbling, paranoia nursing and 2AM-James-Bond-action than anything I've read here in months. I don't mind a link to a store in a story this intriguing.
  • by sm62704 ( 957197 ) on Saturday August 05, 2006 @09:24AM (#15851916) Journal
    MATURE adults try to talk out their problems.

    If he were a mature adult he wouldn't have a problem because he couldn't hear it!
  • Re:Try this (Score:2, Funny)

    by ATMD ( 986401 ) on Saturday August 05, 2006 @09:34AM (#15851948) Journal
    Happy birthday!
  • by Rauser ( 631244 ) on Saturday August 05, 2006 @10:27AM (#15852084)
    Yeah, or you could just get older--it's working for me :(
  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday August 05, 2006 @10:43AM (#15852149)
    Now he's parking his car across two spaces so nobody else can use Guest parking.

    Odd thing that all 4 tire valves leak only when he parks across 2 spaces.
  • by nsayer ( 86181 ) * <> on Saturday August 05, 2006 @12:03PM (#15852406) Homepage
    No, but three rights make a left.
  • ObSimpsons (Score:3, Funny)

    by Dirtside ( 91468 ) on Saturday August 05, 2006 @12:49PM (#15852552) Journal
    Only problem is you are now left with a bigger monster then what you started out with
    No problem! When winter rolls around, the gorillas simply freeze to death.

  • by DavidTC ( 10147 ) <<moc.xobreven> ... .vidavsxd54sals>> on Saturday August 05, 2006 @12:51PM (#15852560) Homepage

    Oh, no, alarms are serious business.

    For example, when a car alarm goes off, that means someone is trying to steal it. It might have scared them away temporarily, but they'll certainly be back to steal the car.

    And, remember, it is legal to commit a lesser crime to prevent a larger one. For example, to stop felony grand theft auto, feel free to commit misdemeanor vandalism by slashing the tires of the car, keeping that pesky car thief from making off it with it. You might want to slash two of them, as most cars have spares in the trunk, and obviously car thiefs can get in there if they can get inside the car to set off the alarm. (Surely they have to get inside the car, no one would be crazy enough to have an alarm that goes off when people merely touch a car.)

    When the car owner finally shows up, he'll be very grateful that his car is still there. If you have time, though, you might want to leave a note for him that says the time his alarm went off, and telling him that he should have the police dust the inside of the car for fingerprints to try to track down the thieves. But I like to be an anonymous hero, walking past with a quick bend-and-slash, stroll to the next wheel, bend-and-slash, saving their car, and walking off with the mere satifaction of a job well done being my only reward.

  • Great idea! (Score:3, Funny)

    by AmazingRuss ( 555076 ) on Saturday August 05, 2006 @01:21PM (#15852654)
    Go on over to his house, ring the bell, and when he answers, give him your friendliest smile, then cockpunch him.

    The population is too large to limit yourself to peaceful solutions. Do what you feel!

  • by shorgs ( 874640 ) on Saturday August 05, 2006 @03:03PM (#15853003)
    From the link: the Mosquito ultrasonic teenage deterrent has been described as "the most effective tool in our fight against anti social behaviour". Shop keepers around the world have purchased the device to move along unwanted gatherings of teenagers and anti social youths. Gatherings of anti social youths. Other featured products are, the worlds darkest lightbulb and the worlds hottest air conditioner.
  • by gregmac ( 629064 ) on Saturday August 05, 2006 @03:20PM (#15853061) Homepage
    More importantly, he can't really do anything with the police about it because to explain how it's broken he'd have to explain what it's supposed to do in the first place, and then he'd be admitting that your complaints about him were true. He can hardly complain "hey, they broke my illegal noise making machine!"

    I remember watching an episode of "Cops" once where a guy called to report a robbery, but was very vague about what was stolen. Eventually, he told them that the guy had stole a few grams of marijuana or something from him, which the officers found quite entertaining, to say the least.
  • by Salgak1 ( 20136 ) <[salgak] [at] []> on Saturday August 05, 2006 @05:15PM (#15853383) Homepage
    . . . and two Wrights make an airplane, but that's not important right now . . .
  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday August 05, 2006 @08:41PM (#15853870)
    This reminds me of the guy that used to live next door to me. He had a big black lab, and he let the damn dog run all over the place. Cutting the grass was an excercise in looking for dog poop and trying to not step in it. He also liked to start cutting his grass at 7:45AM on Saturday, knowing that he wasn't allowed to until 8AM, but would just say "dude, it's just 15 minutes, get over it" and keep doing it.

    Since the guy got himself elected HA president (he's was a professor at the local university, and had a forceful personality), it was hard to get anyone to do anything about it, even with videotape evidence.

    He ended up the least liked guy in the development of over 300 homes. Everyone knew him, and generally hated him.

    So, we took the easy route. Nobody else in a several house radius owned a dog. We bought a few dog whistles. And they got placed into trees, or on rooftops. On the homes all around his house.

    No matter which way the wind blew, one of the whistles would start to sound. And his dog would start to bark. Loudly. At all hours of the night. Since he had a toddler himself, their baby would get woken up constantly, and the parents couldn't sleep well, either. And we kindly kept calling the police about his dog.

    Since his dog acted totally normal away from the house, the guy started to suspect something, but he couldn't prove a thing. Eventually, we started to see the dog on a leash outside the house all the time, the lawnmower stopped starting at 7:45, and about a month later, put the house up for sale. Claimed the dog just didnt'like the house.

    Cheapest fix ever.
  • by morethanapapercert ( 749527 ) on Sunday August 06, 2006 @12:05AM (#15854265) Homepage
    or better still, the loudest noisemaker I've ever heard of... [] A noisemaker so loud it apparently starts fires! 138Db 100' from the unit!
  • by tylernt ( 581794 ) on Sunday August 06, 2006 @11:42AM (#15855390)
    You could offer to buy your neighbor one of those collars that shock the dog when it barks.
  • by AmericanInKiev ( 453362 ) on Sunday August 06, 2006 @06:06PM (#15856477) Homepage
    The sane response is to borrow an ice cream truck. The noise is universally accepted - it is irritating beyond description, and will attract kids. I think it is the safe and appropriate answer to your problem.

  • by CommieOverlord ( 234015 ) on Sunday August 06, 2006 @06:58PM (#15856646)
    should be as quiet as rural North Dakota,

    I was chatting with some friends in their living room one friday night, with the windows/patio door open to let in air. The neighbour across the backyard came over to complain because she "couldn't hear the leaves in the trees".

"Never face facts; if you do, you'll never get up in the morning." -- Marlo Thomas