Either you require total silence from your workplace or you like an office that supplies ambient noises. Digging deeper into the subject, research data show that most (if not all) people become more productive when exposed to some ambient background noises. I’m a perfect example, although, I’m a combination of the two. When I’m reading emails and searching for photos for my blog posts, I love listening to music and ambient noises, but when writing serious articles, I tend to block (no, I need to delete) all noises as much as possible. Anyway, I surmise, most creatives love ambient noises. Sometimes blended with music, at times plain ambient. And other times just music. Well, to me, I have moods, so… I have various choices every now and then. So much about me, let’s turn to you. If you’ve always told friends, “this place has deafening silence” then most probably, you belong to the ambient-noise-needing category; workers who produce more when exposed to soft noises.
An office environment naturally exposes workers to background noises. At times, to the point where it turns disruptive. Most people would have no choice but to leave even temporarily. What about people who work from home, like me? Most use their radios as background while working, or they turn the TV on. After sometime, though, they’d realize they’re actually being distracted. Now, the key idea is–find indistinct, and subtle sounds as useful workplace background. Fortunately, there are several tools ready to supply all the soft noises your system requires.
This service does not use nondescript background chatter like another site, it’s a color noise generator. I’m sure you’ve heard of white noise (i.e. a turned on vacuum). This website provides three types of color noises. White (the most effective for distraction blocking; great for maintaining focus, writing, reading, and studying), Pink (perfect for relaxing the mind and body due to its stress-melting capabilities), and Brown (good aid for inducing sleep, soothing migraines, and pacifying children). Provided on Simply Noise is a sliding volume control, a sleep timer, and oscillation button (this one is my fave–you can set it, so, the volume will automatically rise and fall). As you can tell by now, Simply Noise is simple to use. Just select your color, set the volume you are comfy with, and you’re set to reap the benefits.
This wonderfully designed site provides three backgrounds: Morning Murmur (a gentle hum, which is my fave; especially when I’m starting my day, sipping my cappuccino and going through my to-do list), Lunchtime Lounge (bustling chatter), and University Undertones (campus cafe). A pause button is provided whenever you need a bladder break (rest room trip, if you prefer that), and a sliding volume control to give you the freedom to find the perfect level for your needs and moods.
From the same founders of Simply Noise, this website offers the pleasant sound of rain.
The dashboard features a slide volume control, sliding intensity control (gentle shower to heavy storm), thunder mode (often, few, rare), oscillation button, and a sleep timer. Nothing too fancy…just pleasurable background noise for those who find the sound of rainfall to be soothing and comforting.
Also available: iOS app (99 cents).
This service combine two features (a perfect blend, actually). Rainy Cafe provides background chatter in coffee shops (similar to Coffitivity) AND the sound of rain (similar to Simply Rain). It provides individual volume and on/off control for each sound category. You can listen to only the background noise, or you can only enjoy the rain noises, or you can opt to listen to both as a nice combo. A minimalist site, if you’ll ask my opinion, yet it rocks.
No apps available at the moment.
As the name reveals, this site focuses on the sound of gentle rain. But it enhances the service by providing a full screen background video, what else, rain on a window pane (that includes an on/off button), and it gives you the prerogative to add the “song of the day” to the the rain audio as well. It allows you to pick from three volume settings. Just click on the speaker icon that is situated at the bottom of the screen to make adjustments.
Last, but not the least, Jazz and Rain is pretty straightforward in terms of what it does. The name says it all. Its dashboard includes a sliding rain volume control and pause button, and a jazz volume control, skip and repeat buttons. An additional nice feature is the music title online appears on screen, so if you hear something you love, you’ll know the artist and the title.
Currently no apps available.
Each one of us has work preferences, and some need some peace and quiet to get things done. However, if you belong to the other group, especially when you’re a creative, these six audio services provide a fabulous mix of chatter, rain, color noise, and instrumental music. All of which works pretty well at obliterating the deafening silence that’s hindering you from productive work.
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