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Music Media

Homemade Subliminal CDs 305

An anonymous reader writes "Hello Slashdotters, I am totally stumped on how to do this. I would like to create custom subliminal CDs for my own use. I don't trust the CDs for sale in the stores, after all, who regulates that industry and ensures there actually is a message on them, and if so, what is the message? I would like to create positive motivational CDs, or even recite text from study guides/trivia, you name it, and lay it underneath tracks from a custom CD of my favorite bands. What is the best software to use to create such a beast on Windows, Mac, and Linux systems? And conversely, has anyone used any of the music software on these platforms to actually analyze the contents of commercial subliminal CDs? Any advice would be of use...thanks!"
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Homemade Subliminal CDs

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  • Subliminal Messaging (Score:5, Interesting)

    by dolo666 ( 195584 ) on Thursday April 01, 2004 @11:14AM (#8736640) Journal
    Apparently, subliminal messages have little effect [snopes.com]. Maybe you're just looking for the placebo [wikipedia.org] effect, in which case it likely doesn't matter *how* you record your subliminal tape, just as long as *you* beleive!
    • But that sort of subliminal advertising is flashing an ad on-screen for a fraction of a second. This would be underlaying one track beneath another. I don't know how effective it is, but it's not a snapshot like the movie "urban legend", it's immersive. Can't actors memorize lines by recording them, and then playing back while they sleep?
    • by Dun Malg ( 230075 ) on Thursday April 01, 2004 @11:23AM (#8736757) Homepage
      Here's [rapidnet.com] something explaining that the notion of subliminal anything is hogwash. April 1st or not, slashdot should remain a place of learning...

      OK, I couldn't say that without laughing either

      • Yes. What works better is superliminal messaging. On my website [dasmegabyte.org] I sell a series of superliminal CDs that will help you lose weight fast. Here's a sample from the transcript:

        [soothing new age music plays]
        [Das speaks] Welcome to the superliminal weight loss tape. I will provide you with the gentle encouragement you need to lose weight and be a better you. Are you ready? Sit someplace comfortable, close your eyes, and turn up your headphones. We're ready to begin.

        Etcetera. We also have a tape that will make YOU less wishy washy and indecisive and more attractive to girls.
        • I had a great business plan to sell superluminal CD's to help people lose weight, but since the customers would lose weight before buying the CD's, they wouldn't bother to order in the first place.

          I'm afraid if I go through with it, the causality paradox might cause the universe to explode.

    • if the author is paranoid of RIAA subliminal advertising, what makes you think he's going to believe something available on the internet? Just because it's posted on the web, doesn't mean it's true.
    • by sketerpot ( 454020 ) <sketerpot@gmai[ ]om ['l.c' in gap]> on Thursday April 01, 2004 @11:27AM (#8736795)
      Don't tell him that! You may ruin the placebo effect!
    • Interesting. Does anybody have links/citations for any of the "numerous studies" by psychologists done on the topic? The link provided in the parent has no citations to anything aside from one repetition of the Ft. Lee experiment (and that's more an anecdote than a citation to a reputable source).

      I should also note that I have no opinion on the topic one way or the other, I'd just be interested in reading the studies.

    • by wass ( 72082 ) on Thursday April 01, 2004 @11:37AM (#8736903)
      I actually did a research project back in high school (1992) where I made up a bunch of fake vocabulary words and flashed them on the computer screen for varying durations. While at the longest durations the flashing was somewhat noticeable, it was still too quick to read the words.

      I told the students they were being tested on the ability of typing in words to help them remember their meanings. Meanwhile other words and definitions were being flashed on the screen. At the end of the session (10-15 mins i think) they were given a test with both sets of words, and only the subliminal words were counted.

      I tested 3 varying durations of the messages, and one of the durations actually had noticeable score above the statistical average for guessing. I was getting psyched. Then I realized I needed a control group too, where I didn't flash anything on the screen. It turned out the control group got nearly the same score as that one above-average group.

      I did statistical ANOVA analysis, and basically there was no significant correlation between the group scores and the flashing duration.

      It was still a fun project to do. And I got to present the project at the Monmouth Junior Science Symposium [monmouth.edu] too, which ironically happens to be running today and tomorrow.

      • by Jerf ( 17166 )
        I actually did a research project back in high school (1992) where I made up a bunch of fake vocabulary words and flashed them on the computer screen for varying durations. While at the longest durations the flashing was somewhat noticeable, it was still too quick to read the words.

        You can't flash words any faster then the computer screen updates. Back in the Commodore 64 days, I was able to read up to 10-digit sequences, no matter how "quickly" you flashed the digits, because the television works on a 24
    • As my main field of research(cant tell very much)for years now i can say that the articles author could use any of the programs that produce binaural beating at the appropriate frequencies for the task at hand.make sure the slow changes in freq.drop match the time changes in the vocal/music track.vocoding software should be utilized at this point.vocode stereo track with binaural beating(experiment w/mix) then mix this right over the top of the same track untouched.(again experement w/mix after all theres n
    • Why would I trust Snopes? I could make a website called BFG9000's Urban Legends site, say that the Rectangle doesn't exist, and people would be linking it on Slashdot as fact.
  • by grub ( 11606 ) <slashdot@grub.net> on Thursday April 01, 2004 @11:14AM (#8736645) Homepage Journal

    I don't trust the CDs for sale in the stores, after all, who regulates that industry and ensures there actually is a message on them, and if so, what is the message

    April 1, 2004: Aluminium foil sells record amounts worldwide. History will refer to it as "The Slashdot-Bauxite Phenomena" which seems to predominately strike teen->30ish single male geeks.
  • I don't trust the CDs for sale in the stores, after all, who regulates that industry and ensures there actually is a message on them, and if so, what is the message?

    You have nothing to worry about, because subliminal advertising is not effective. [snopes.com]

    • Yes, but conditioned responses and visual association aren't hokum.

      When you are driving down the road and you see the big golden M, do you suddenly get hungry?

      When asked for a beverage do you ask for a "Coke" or a "Pepsi" or a "Sprite"? (For giggles I ask for a cola, around my parts people look at me funny.)

      When you are buying something at the store, and are presented with 3 options, do you automatically assume the most expensive is the best?

      When you need to blow your nose, do you ask for a "Kleenex?"

  • Next Head Line - I would like to package my own Breakfast cerial. I am worried that the US Goverment is trying to draft me to war with my sugar smacks!
  • by Doesn't_Comment_Code ( 692510 ) on Thursday April 01, 2004 @11:17AM (#8736682)

    I would like to create custom subliminal CDs for my own use.

    Anybody else creeped out?
    • Yes, those RIAA employees are creepy!

      I wonder if this one is really going to use them for personal reasons though... Sounds to me like it's just the next logical step in their War against Piracy.
      • No, he is probably planning on putting "Screw me now" subliminals on the CD and then invite that hottie from class over to listen to his music. Or better, give her a copy of the CD. Sounds like Ross Jeffries to me.
    • Here's how I creeped myself out: I was using garage band to record my own voice. I laid down an MP3 music track then just added my own voice by talking to my iMac. added a choral effect and turne the volume down on my own voice. Eerie. like I was talking to my self but could not quite hear myself. For added effect try the flanger. Its like you are talking from the grave.
      • Oh one other thing I forgot to mention. The imacs have a microphone in the LCD display. Because its located so far from the computer case and its directional it does not pick up any fan or disk drive noises. Its a sweet bit of engineering. I was not exepecting it to be so good. It was actually better than the (low cost) hand held microphone I tried.
  • Subliminal messages? (Score:5, Informative)

    by lavalyn ( 649886 ) on Thursday April 01, 2004 @11:17AM (#8736683) Homepage Journal
    ... You will get naked and horny ... ... You want sex now ... ... vi is superior to emacs ...

    Okay, seriously. You want Audacity. It's multi-track sound-editing software, so you can prepare your subliminal messages and just add them into another waveform. Then you save the results.
    • Okay, seriously.
      ...no seriously...it's April Fools. Nothing to read here today folks, get back to other ways to avoid increasing productivity :-)

      I gotta hand it to them, this year is moderately better than last year [slashdot.org]...

      ... so far ...

    • Okay, seriously. You want Audacity. It's multi-track sound-editing software, so you can prepare your subliminal messages and just add them into another waveform. Then you save the results.

      Even easier:
      dd if=/dev/random of=/home/pegr/mycd.iso bs=512 count=50000000

      Then burn with cdrecord. For different mixes, just run it again! ;)
  • So far none of them have been remotely amusing and neither is this one. Surely someone can come up with something better than this, you have a
    whole year to prepare after all!
    • I'm just waiting for the "SCO provides proff that 88% of Linux source code stolen directly from Original UNIX. SCO also provides complete contract signed by every exec from Novell saying they have 100% code owner ship and Novell has squat" story.
    • by bluGill ( 862 ) on Thursday April 01, 2004 @11:50AM (#8737073)

      Remember last year when every story (almost twice the normal amount it seemed like) was obviously completely false? I have to say that the stories this year a much better. Likely false, but there is enough behind them that they could be true. Slashdot is doing a much better job this year, I'm enjoying the stories.

      • Remember last year when every story was obviously completely false?... I have to say that the stories this year a much better. Likely false, but there is enough behind them that they could be true.

        Yeah, I hear they trained for this by watching Fox News.
    • I'm pretty sure these aren't jokes, at least not in the sense you're thinking of. Judging by the "department" name, I think slashdot is using april fools day as an opportunity to show us some of the more stupid story submissions that they get.

      I say keep it up!
    • The point of April Fools is not to tell an amusing story, but rather to tell a story that makes a joke out of you, the fool, for believing it.
    • because otherwise you're just lame. Anyway, I did a variation of this joke [snopes.com] on my users. Here is the email I sent out yesterday 15 minutes before leaving:

      Tomorrow night our network and phone system will be "cleaned". This will be done by forcing air through the wiring to blow out any debris that may be blocking the system from functioning correctly. Please help us out by brining in a small plastic sandwich bag in the morning. These bags will be placed over your headsets to prevent the dust and debris

    • The chicken one was magnificent.
  • Just spped it up (Score:5, Interesting)

    by MajorDick ( 735308 ) on Thursday April 01, 2004 @11:18AM (#8736691)
    Tests have shown subliminal messages in audio are for the most part useless, HOWEVER if you increase the speed you retention goes up significantly. Years ago there was a tape recorder (does anyone remeber who sold these they sold the Bone Phone also, Demco or something like that) My dad gfot one and swore like hell it worked, several studies I have read since seem to confirm this.
    • That's what I do. I use goldwave [goldwave.com] (windows cheapware) to compress the audio to whatever works best for me, usually 600 wpm or so. I think the reason it works so well is that I go into an active listening state, instead of letting my mind wander.
    • now, this [westfieldnetwork.com] is what I call a subliminal message.
    • The Japanese "Bone Phone" company is : NTT DoCoMo
      • No, back in the 1970's there was an FM radio that hung around your neck in a lycra holder, it was called the Bone Phone [ebay.com], they were sold in magazines the same company I think was the one who made the special tape recorders marketed for retention that ran at a higher speed. I cant for the life of me remeber who sold them, I used to get their catalogs all the time they specialized in audio tapes, Demco, Dalco, something like that
    • I have and old tape of subliminal suggestions (commercially created). One day, messing around with it in a modded tape recorder, I managed to expose the subliminal message for 1.5 seconds. It was a regular message that was speeded up but pitch changed down to higher audio tones. A bit like something buzzing in your ear but almost understandable. This actually confirmed what the author said in the narration at the beginning of the tape. Oh, the author said that putting a completely audible, normal speed and
  • BS (Score:5, Funny)

    by FortKnox ( 169099 ) on Thursday April 01, 2004 @11:18AM (#8736692) Homepage Journal
    You don't want to make subliminal positive motivation CDs... you want to make subliminal CDs convincing hot chicks to sleep with you!

    Umm... hey hottie... nice iPod... here, listen to THIS mp3 I have...
  • by BigFlirt ( 632867 ) on Thursday April 01, 2004 @11:18AM (#8736693) Homepage Journal
    I think the best (send me money) way to make some custom (send me money) subliminal CDs would be to (send me money) go to your local record shop and (send me money) ask around for help. I know that I've bought some CDs (with your money) that really motivated me to learn (how to send subliminal messages) material for school and I got those by (send me money) just asking around
  • Dear God (Score:2, Insightful)

    Fuck. Fuck fuck fuck. April 1st again. I'm going to go and cower under the covers until tomorrow...
  • by k3v0 ( 592611 ) on Thursday April 01, 2004 @11:20AM (#8736711) Journal
    Wired [wired.com] has this article describing the hidden pictures on the Windowlicker EP.
    • That is really cool. I'm not a big techno fan, but I like Aphex Twin's stuff.

      It's not a subliminal picture or message because it's just a metallic screech to your ears and brain. When you run the CD wave through specific visualization software, the picture appears. It's like a musical easter egg.

      In general, subliminal anything doesn't work.

    • damn! You beat me to it!
      This is actually Audio Spectrum Steganography, and not really subliminal.

      Still, its DAMN cool.
  • Why worry? (Score:5, Funny)

    by Bull999999 ( 652264 ) on Thursday April 01, 2004 @11:21AM (#8736726) Journal
    Why worry about subliminal message on store bought CDs? I'm pretty sure a caring and well respected RIAA would never do anything other can put the artists' and customers' best interests. In fact, I welcome our new RIAA overlords... That reminds me, I need to go to the store and buy high quility CD's full of equally high quility songs (without any fillers) endorsed by high quility RIAA directors.
  • It's not quite the same, but once I recorded a study guide on a tape and played it on repeat while I slept. All I got out of it was a really bad nights sleep, since I think the voice kept me from getting into deep sleep (but it never woke me up either). It didn't help me memorize the material, either.

    If submliminal isn't really submliminal (e.g. it still sends vocal audio at, say, a really low volume or mixed in to the point it isn't really noticable), it might have a similar effect.

    However, if you want
  • by shiafu ( 220820 ) on Thursday April 01, 2004 @11:22AM (#8736741)
    As we all know from the Simpsons, the Navy is quite skilled in this art:

    Lisa: But you have recruiting ads on TV. Why do you need subliminal messages?

    Smash: It's a three-pronged attack. Subliminal, liminal, and superliminal.

    Lisa: Superliminal?

    Smash: I'll show you. [opens the window, and shouts at Lenny and Carl, who are standing on the corner] Hey, you! Join the Navy!

    Carl: Uh, yeah, all right.

    Lenny: I'm in.

  • I think you might be asking this in the wrong place. You want these [fark.com] folks.

    Or am I the only one who thinks this sounds like a Photoshop contest?

    Ah, well. It's April First and I'm the biggest fool of them all...
  • by Feathers McGraw ( 180980 ) on Thursday April 01, 2004 @11:22AM (#8736748)
    Kevin Nealon has already patented this technology. Fortunately, the licensing fees are really quite reasonable .
  • Begone! (Score:3, Funny)

    by CharAznable ( 702598 ) on Thursday April 01, 2004 @11:22AM (#8736749)
    Subliminal messages are the work of Satanists and Commie Pinko bastards trying to corrupt America's Christian youth!
    Once I learned the TRUTH I BURNED all my Pat Boone and Mandy Moore CD's! MUSIC IS EVIL!
    Stop what thou are doing now unless you want to Burn in a Lake of Fire!!!!
  • All you have to do is buy my Subliminal CD instruction course. It's 4 Message packed Subliminal CDs that will teach you all the secrets of the subliminal industry and how you too can program your own dron... errrr... mind to do what you want!

    You can learn all of this while you sleep!

  • Someone's tryin' to get laid, the subliminal way. :)
  • Simple. (Score:5, Funny)

    by American AC in Paris ( 230456 ) * on Thursday April 01, 2004 @11:25AM (#8736773) Homepage
    1. Record thirty minutes' worth of an industrial-strength air conditioning unit from five feet away. Use a unidirectional microphone.
    2. Purchase/download a copy of "Smoke Gets In Your Eyes". Chop it up into ten-second segments, chain them together starting with the last and ending with the first, and reverse the entire file.
    3. Overlay the two audio loops and decrease their speed by a factor of eight. This should leave you with a low-pitched rumble.
    4. Loop this clip so that it will fill an entire CD to the last bit.
    5. IMPORTANT:Toggle every bit that corresponds with a number in the Fibonacci sequence (i.e. if the fifth bit on the track is a '1', make it a '0'.)
    6. Burn this track to a CD.
    7. Get ready for bed.
    8. Put on a pair of headphones (use a noise-cancelling pair with gold-plated cables for best effect) and start playing the CD.
    9. EXACTLY TEN SECONDS into the track, think very hard about the subliminal message you want to convey to yourself.
    10. Fall asleep.

    Behold, the power of suggestion.

  • And conversely, has anyone used any of the music software on these platforms to actually analyze the contents of commercial subliminal CDs?

    If I were making a CD like that, I wouldn't put the message on a separate track that could be easily isolated. I'd mix it in with a dominant track so that it would be virtually impossible to extract. And IF anyone does this, I don't think you'll have much luck picking out the subliminal sounds.
  • create positive motivational CDs

    How about positive, motivational music?

    You may actually want to check out some Christian rock (or pop, or whatever you're in to), even if you are not a Christian. Much of it is "watered down" enough that it doesn't sound like a sermon in any way.

    Try Switchfoot or Pillar. Both have "crossed over" into the mainstream market.
  • The following be made into a subliminal CD and played back to the editors...

    "I will cese to post April fool stories" "I will cese to post April fool stories" "I will cese to post April fool stories"

    This is turning into a pretty horrible news day for me.. It seems everybody whose in the business of publishing news is publishing bogus stuff to go with it... Heck, even Reuters is in no teh act with the google gmail one.

    • *sigh* Why do people get so annoyed when April 1st gets here? Do people completly forget that today is "April Fools Day"? /. pulls off its annual (say it again *ann-u-al*) April Fools joke every year without fail and people get pissed off like it's the first time it's EVER happened.

      So what if the news sites out there are posting bogus news articles. Don't you think that after telling the horrific stories of yet another terrorist attack in some country, more Americans getting snuffed in Iraq, some Butt Bugg
    • Here's one for your CD...

      "Cease has an 'a' in it"
  • Multitrack editor (Score:4, Interesting)

    by SavoWood ( 650474 ) on Thursday April 01, 2004 @11:31AM (#8736842) Homepage
    Basically all you need is a simple multitrack editor. If you want the information to be subliminal, you'd mix it to the point where you just can't hear it. That would mean, push up the (virtual) fader until you can just barely hear it at all, then come back a "notch" to where you don't hear it.

    DO NOT make it an mp3/aac/ogg or any other compressed format as that will drop the "unheard" information from the file. That would defeat the purpose. You need to save the file as aiff or any other PCM format.

    Studies on whether or not this actually works are inconclusive. It may depend on your receptiveness to the method. Good luck.
  • by flinxmeister ( 601654 ) on Thursday April 01, 2004 @11:34AM (#8736875) Homepage
    Great things can be achieved
    if you use subliminal tools that are proven to be
    very effective by people with the
    experience in the areas of consciousness,
    memory and mental capacity. If you just believe
    every quack out there there's no telling the
    mess you can get into. So don't trust every
    offer by every amateur with a web page.
    Nobody will tell you the bad results. In fact,
    everyone will say they have good results.
    You need to do your research well.
  • This isn't really software, but it's good content for any subliminal CD...
    www.despair.com [despair.com]
  • Supposidly your record someone talking, reverse it, and mix it really low into the music. But really it's all just a crock of shit. Just something bands did in the 80's to freak out their fan's parents.
  • by lorcha ( 464930 ) on Thursday April 01, 2004 @11:40AM (#8736936)
    What is the best software to use to create such a beast on Windows, Mac, and Linux systems?
    Translation: I'm going to do this on Windows, but if I don't mention OSX and/or Linux, I'll never get this story posted.
  • by ch-chuck ( 9622 ) on Thursday April 01, 2004 @11:43AM (#8736971) Homepage
    We had some of those on cassette tape and one time I played it 'fast fwd' on a cheap player, basically you hold the play button down part way where it doesn't fully latch, and the hub would pull the tape past the head real fast w/o the capstan regulating the tape speed. Anyway, we could definitely hear a voice in there then, like a faint chipmonk type speech.

    Subliminal messaging definitely does work, but maybe not in this format of sub-audible talk under a soundtrack. It's used all the time in visual print advertising.

    To answer the question: just record a message track, mix it in with your music track and adjust the volumn so it can't be consciously heard. Use cooledit. A five yo child could do it.

  • I would like to create custom subliminal CDs for my own use.

    I can imagine... "Oh, you like Billy Joel? I just happen to have his CD here! Let's have a listen!"

    In the middle of the night (have sex with me)
    I go walking in my dreams (you dream of me)
    Through the mountains of faith (let me touch your mountains)
    To a river so deep (I go really deep)

  • i can hear the sound now....
  • by neildiamond ( 610251 ) on Thursday April 01, 2004 @12:04PM (#8737275)
    Cool Edit Pro/Adobe Audition actually has a feature for this type of thing. You can make biofeedback type of things with it.
  • Try n-n-n-not to have a s-s-s-s-s-seizure!
  • !yawyna hsac eht em dnes tuB
  • A friend of mine and I talked about this once, because he wanted to quit smoking. I referred him to Snopes and Straight Dope, and that make him go towards the Nicotine patch, and that worked really well, and he's been smoke-free now for 4 years.

    But while researching this, I found other links that described various methods to learning foreign languages, and some of them, not surprisingly, suggested that you should use subliminal methods to "boost" your active learning. Many of these CDs were bogus, IMHO.

  • Use Cool Edit! (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday April 01, 2004 @02:40PM (#8739351)
    your looking for "binural beats". google it..

    This is a real way of influencing your state of mind, not necessarily exact content, but being able to train your brain's rhythms (alpha, beta, theta) at a certain frequency where the effect your meditation or excitement is most useable.

    Not bullshit: Take two tones, one at 700 hz, the other 705 hz, and play them in stereo headphones, left/right configuration. What you perceive is the classic 'beat note' you might hear while say, tuning a guitar. This beat note is a FIVE hz tone (the difference), which under normal circumstances is waaay to low to hear. What ends up happening (this has been studied) is that your brain unconsciously begins to train itself at the frequency of that note you 'hear'. so if you want meditational frequencies (theta: 1-3 hz?) you set it to that and then put those tones behind some listening material. You can also do something like change the tone from a 3 hz seperation up to a 17 hz one over the course of 15 miunutes --- listening to this can 'move'' your state of awareness from a deep mediation to a state of extreme awareness. or vice versa, if you just got off of work and want to relax. anyway, all this talk of subliminal messages; this is the real thing.

  • Mini-mini-HOWTO (Score:3, Interesting)

    by code_monkey_steve ( 651206 ) on Thursday April 01, 2004 @02:59PM (#8739614)
    O.k., I know it's April 1, but I could use the karma. ;)

    A few years back I ran across patent #5,159,703 [uspto.gov], which claims a method for subliminal audio. The jist of the method is to frequency- or amplitude-modulate the "message" with a carrier wave sufficiently higher than the range of hearing (for me, about 16KHz, YMMV). You then mix this with the music track.

    CDDA supports up to 22KHz, and most speakers/headphones claim a frequency response up to 20KHz, so this gives about 4KHz of bandwidth for the message, which is roughly the same bandwidth as voice telephony.

    I never got around to actually seeing if it actually worked (just because it's patented, doesn't mean it's valid), but you're welcome to try ...

  • Subliminal... (Score:4, Interesting)

    by malachid69 ( 306291 ) on Thursday April 01, 2004 @05:43PM (#8741478) Homepage
    Ok, let's ignore the question of whether they work or not and actually answer the question that was asked.

    Subliminal messages are in the range above conscious hearing. This is generally agreed to be 20KHz. Therefore, you would take the spoken portion, and boost it by 20KHz, then add in the music at the normal frequencies.

    Now, the real trick here isn't how you record it, but how you play it back. If your audio goes up to say, 25KHz -- you better make sure your speakers/headphones go that high, or it will be a completely useless excersize.

    Now, depending on what you are trying to achieve, you might try something else instead. Look into doing binaural audio beats. They are very simple to produce (20 lines of Java, for example). To work correctly, they would require headphones and for best results you do NOT mix it with any other sounds.

    The goal behind the binaural audio beats is to cause your brain to resonate at the same frequency as the sounds, thus putting you in a different mental state (alpha, beta, theta, etc) which could result in a hypnogogic state (between sleep and awake) which might help achieve whatever results you are looking for.

"If it's not loud, it doesn't work!" -- Blank Reg, from "Max Headroom"