First, how important quietness is! I imagine that the Mars settlement
will be noisier than a mall. There will be big airconditioning fans;
motors and generators, security systems and freight elevators; pumps and
air scrubbers. Beeps, boops, hums, rattles and throbs. I bet everything
will be noisy all the time!
Some noise might be welcome in such an alien place, the way a distant
station on a car radio can comfort you at night when you're driving
through empty country. And "noisecanceling headphones" might help
individuals a bit. But I think it's important to have at least one room
that's as quiet as an open field. A place where people can talk to each
other calmly, or just sit by themselves and think clearly. Mars will
take a lot of clear thinking.
Second, the Mars rockets will carry at no extra cost the most expressive
of all musical instruments: the human voice. I suggest that the
community form a chorus. There will be a lot of loneliness and
frustration on Mars, and no communal activity comforts people more than
Third, you know what I'd like to have on Mars. ButShhh!don't
tell anyone I snuck a piano on board the rocket!
P.S. If you're interested in music and sound, my web site may interest
Home page: http://www.cco.caltech.edu/~boyk
Music sessions, open to all:
Lessons & coaching: http://www.cco.caltech.edu/~boyk/lessons.htm
And you can download a soundfile of me performing the Presto movement of Beethoven's Seven Bagatelles, Opus 33.
PC WAV sound file (1.3M)
Mac/Sun AIF sound file (1.3M)
This is taken from my CD Boyk Beethoven
(PR-9-CD) available from Performance Recordings
2135 Holmby Avenue
Los Angeles, CA 90025
Thanks to Max Berson, David Boyk, Ariadne Greif, Matthew Growdon, Anna
Sutheim, David Wyner and Saul Wyner for feedback!
ŠJames Boyk 1999. All rights reserved. Permission given to Mars
Millennium Project for noncommercial use only. Reprinting of this
response in any form must be in full (763 words) and carry author's name
and this notice.