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I would vote for a small yet useful add-on of sound notification that would come together with the visual red notification badge, when somebody answers or comments my question. This would free me from continuous checking the page at moments where I'm working on something else.

Some usability proposals:

  • global preference setting per user within profile,
  • a menu of three choices: no sound, subtle and strong,
  • a feature available starting at a specified point threshold.

This kind of notification is provided on some webmail interfaces having large public, so I don't expect that to present any bandwidth issues by the polling requests.

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    Hate to disagree with you, but having spent the last 10 years trying to improve the web, bringing back sounds on webpages fills me with horror! – Clive May 25 '12 at 15:16
  • I understand your horror feeling - I have it too, but only when the sound tries to control me (as in auto-play movies), not when in reverse and when explicitly allowed. Voting to close, as I don't mean to argue on this. – Artur May 25 '12 at 16:20
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    If you're worried about the downvotes don't be, they only signify agreement or disagreement to a particular topic on meta sites. I can't see this breaking out in any sort of argument, it's a perfectly valid question :) – Clive May 25 '12 at 16:22
4

I strongly disagree with adding this on the website, but if you use one of the SE notifier pieces of software you can probably set it up to ring whatever sound you want. For example, on the Mac I'm using Newt, which integrates with Growl, a system-wide notifications utility. Using Growl, if you really wanted you could set a sound. You can find more at Stack Apps.

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    How have I never come across Newt before?! I'm going to get even less work done now... – Clive May 25 '12 at 16:19
  • I tried Newt, but it didn't work; I installed Stack Exchange Notifier, and it works. I think it depends from the changes done passing from Stack Exchange API 1.1 to Stack Exchange API 2.0. – kiamlaluno May 28 '12 at 11:40
  • Hmm, I'm not sure. I've been happily running Newt on Lion with the latest version of Growl from the App Store. – Patrick Kenny May 28 '12 at 12:57
  • Yep, Newt + Lion working a treat for me too. I used to use SE Notifier but it's not a patch on Newt! – Clive May 28 '12 at 13:11

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