They have Focus, Relax, and Sleep, but I've only ever listened to Focus. It's like this steady stream of some kind of electronically generated music that changes each 30 minutes. I set it to 2 hours, and then I usually take a small break when it ends. I'll turn it on and literally get into the zone immediately; writing line after line of code without even realizing how quickly I'm working. It's like getting on a train to the Matrix or something.
Here's an exclusive deal on the lifetime membership for the next 24 hours.
It's a $29 deal (or 80% off) for the lifetime membership. Our best offer :)
Quick question: is there a way to use an audio player (e.g., Audacious, RhythmBox, VLC) to stream the music without using a web browser? The animated light curves in the background make the browser use 100% of a whole CPU core, which isn't ideal, especially when using a laptop on battery.
ps: I'm getting my salary on Nov. 11th
so could you extend your offer until then?
I was really happy to see we already had a controller strategy for brain.fm. You guys are making great stuff.
However, you only accept credit card payments. I would never give my credit card info to a random site just to read a month from now that they've been hacked.
Is there a reason you are not accepting PayPal or BitCoins? It seems that you are not using one of those big payment processors either.
it's a tiny bug, fixing now!
Anyway, I read your comments that it is nearly 80% done so I'll give it a shot and signup. The mobile version on Chrome browser works decently well so I think I'll manage with that till then.
- As someone else commented, the helicopter-like tremolo on some tracks can be quite irritating. When I find it, I skip. Unfortunately sometimes it starts later in the track and breaks focus. It would be nice to customize track preferences.
- A minimal web mode, no animations, no inspiring quotes.
- Android app but I hear you are working on this...
- Downloadable/offline tracks (if that's not part of the mobile app already; haven't tried iPhone).
My question is, is the tremolo/pulsating nature of the chords (sort of sounds like a helicopter) on most of the music a side-effect to the AI generated sounds, or is this by-design? If by-design, are there settings I could tinker with? If not, feature request. :)
I'm starting to find this a bit unnerving after extended periods, but it could be a personal preference.
If anyone here tries it and likes it, there is actually a pretty good discount on various subscription types that expires in a few hours: https://shop.theawesomer.com/sales/brain-fm-lifetime-subscri...
The discounts are not actually as steep as the site claims (for example, lifetime is normally $150, not $200), but they are still quite good.
Cant handle hacker news bandwidth requirements?
Seems to like any email address I give it, perhaps Bill Gates might like some brain.fm instead... as if..
Seriously, while I think some people might dismiss your comment as snark, I genuinely was interested in this service, but am unwilling to create an account just to get a sample. Sites need to realize that "creating an account", while it appears as simple as supplying a few bits of information, anyone that cares about their time or security will find a few snags.
First, the email address. I don't give my email address away without thought as to whether this service will contact me in the future, how often, and about what. If I'm just trying to get an idea what you offer, I don't want to have to worry about you abusing that address in the future. My inbox is busy enough, thank you, I don't want to have to deal with you later if I've decided I'm not interested.
Second, the password. When linked to a global identifier like an email address, I'm stuck with the choice of using an easily remembered password or password template that I reserve for low interest sites that the accounts don't really matter on and the reduced security this entails, or coming up with a unique secure password (which either entails my trying to be random or a tool).
Now, I could generate a fictitious email and password just to try out your site (because I'm sure as hell not going to go through the effort of making a real separate email for you), but that entails me making a random email that isn't already used (what do you want to bet email@example.com is already taken, or that domain is barred because they use it in testing?), and I don't want to have to think about that, I'm trying to get a quick idea about your service.
So, to site developers who gate examples of their service too aggressively, keep in mind every time I'm mildly interested in your service and you gate more info with a free account form, I groan internally. Of the mild interest I felt, and the feeling that made me groan inside, which do you think wins in the end?
I'm not telling a random internet service for no reason my proper first name, my age or my gender. I can see that there's maybe a reason for age and gender when suggesting music (even though it should be optional nonetheless), but my first name? Are you going to suggest me songs where people chant my name or something?
And because they insist on this ridiculous requirement of entering my first name, it also just becomes much less credible that they actually need my age and gender, and are not just collecting that to sell it away.
Well worth the minor hassle in setting it up, and you get an indication about which site leaked your password or was hacked. I use thunderbird, which even lets me type a from address for emails to make this more useful.
Although, the fact that there are popular tools available to work around the extra cognitive load imposed with account creation and tracking is a very good sign that a free account is much more of an impediment to the general person than these sites seem to realize.
Also, it doesn't affect the fact I still don't want to give away my email address before I've decided a service is worth having an account for.
It's a shame, because I am interested in seeing what the service is like. The problem is that my interest is part driven by wondering how similar it is to my current technique (put on my "Glitch Mob", "Zack Hemsey" or "Carpener Brut" stations on Pandora), wihch means I'm interested if it's slightly better, because I'm not unhappy now. I am at the same time very likely to use their service if it's good, but unlikely to jump through hoops to find out, since I have a solution that to my knowledge works sufficiently, and I've even decided it's worth paying Pandora for. Not exactly the type of customer they want to keep from seeing their service in action.
That link gets you straight to music.
With music, instead, the less I know a piece the more attention it draws. I can’t work with background music for this reason. But Brain.fm barely has this effect on me, curiously.
Pink noise (not sure if it's actually pink noise):
play -c 2 -n synth pinknoise band -n 2500 4000 tremolo 0.03 5 reverb 20 gain
play -n -n --combine merge synth pinknoise band -n 1200 1800 tremolo 50 10 tremolo 0.14 70 tremolo 0.2 50 gain -10
play -c2 -n synth whitenoise band -n 100 24 band -n 300 100 gain +20
When I do mindless stuff I put on google play and listen to whatever I feel like. Might be Buffet, Hot Tuna or even just environmental music.
At a point mid-summer, the effectiveness wore down for a while - I even asked Aaron (one of the founders, but also available via their little support window in the corner) about adding new tracks to Focus, which I'm sure others had also requested, because they added a bunch of new tracks and it became even more effective than before. They also seem to have removed some of the tracks that weren't very effective.
Krautrock is great for working, just keep type type space type type type space type type type space
1. Music I first got into during my teenage years when I was sitting up all night coding assembler (OK, I admit it, Pink Floyd) works well because I think my mind is conditioned in an almost Pavlovian way to go into programming mode when I hear it;
2. Ambient EDM works well because it is very repetitive and doesn't have any strong lyrical structure - my trouble is, as an old fart, I find only a very small subset of the vast range of EDM that I actually like.
3. A certain kind of loud, wall-of-sound rock music which is very heavy on distortion with subdued vocals works well but only at night.
Received opinion says classical music is good for cognitive tasks, and I've tried over the years but never good great results.
1. Irrelevant speech / sounds tends to reduce memory capacity for the task at hand[a].
2. People with ADHD self-stimulate by, e.g, squirming. Music can help them with attentional tasks by providing stimulation [b].
Overall, I'm not that familiar with studies specifically on music, but I'd guess that it's a trade-off between arousal (e.g. rock music or something to pump you up) and dividing attention. Music could also set a context (e.g. put you in programming "mode"), which tends to have a small positive effect on performance on a number of cognitive tasks.
It's almost like I need to keep part of my brain busy so the other "quieter" part can work.
Music, driving, pacing around, and to a lesser extent fidgeting or tapping can all "placate" that part of my brain so the other can actually do work. I'll even do things like play music while listening to a talk or presentation while working, because without the music keeping me "busy" I just can't focus on the topic of the talk.
So my "focus" playlist is post-bop Jazz with things like Chick Corea (especially Three Quartets), Steps Ahead, Keith Jarrett's Standards Trio stuff, early Wynton Marsalis. Some Coltrane, but not so much his meditative stuff - things like Giant Steps make my brain engage.
I can't multitask like that though - I can't have two auditory sources. When I'm talking to people, I have trouble picking out voices when surrounded by a crowd, or with several people talking at once. It's like I'm trying to make sense of all the background noise and can't pick up what's being said directly to me.
But the multitasking thing is a bit different for me, it's more one-sense-at-a-time for me. My wife has laughed at me before because she'll come home and i'll be watching a youtube talk on one screen, playing music over the speakers, and programming something mundane all at the same time, but if 2 people are talking at the same time I have trouble hearing anything.
Interesting how everyone has a personal threshold of not engaging enough / too engaging.
I wish there was some reliable resource I could go to to find 3-5 hour blocks of edm type music.
ATTN paki123: I can't reply to your comment but you should visit and read http://addforums.com/ for support, drug reviews/experiences and tips
I can second sosuke, addforums.com was a great resource. I haven't been there for a long time though.
I read them over, nothing looked overtly spammy or troll-ey, so I vouched for this comment as it seemed genuine.
I do think it's an anti-spam or anti-troll measure, but it looks like it's a mishit in this case.
That being said, is there anyone where we read up on what vouching/dead/etc... means on HN? Maybe one of the mods or someone can help explain some of it (or let me know that they won't explain it for anti-spam purposes...).
That doesn't explain exactly how vouching works, and I think the "strength" of a vouch might be changed per-user (it no longer seems to do the same thing it used to, for me, at least).
I do have a problem with focus while working. One thing which really helps me is if I put on some audiobook I don't really care to focus on too much about, or some podcast or lecture, but it helps me focus. Not all the time, but say I am working on solving a coding challenge, then the part where I figure out which solution would work, I can't listen to anything and I need to focus, but the part where I actually implement the solution(especially if I have implemented something like that many times) then I can only do it if there is something else to distract other parts of my mind.
If I need silence let there be silence, otherwise I enjoy some podcasts or music that pumps me up.
Subjectively, I find that instrumental music is much better for me than the alternative.
Concerning tasks that do not involve auditory targets, studies with adults have consistently shown that especially short-term memory is sensitive to negative effects of noise. Immediate serial recall of visually presented verbal items is reliably impaired by task-irrelevant sounds (for reviews see Hughes and Jones, 2001; Beaman, 2005; Schlittmeier et al., 2012). Impairments occur with single talker speech and non-speech sounds such as tones or instrumental music, but not with continuous broadband noise or babble noise. This so-called irrelevant sound effect (ISE) occurs reliably even with low-intensity sounds, with meaningless speech (e.g., speech in a language unknown to participants), and when sound presentation is confined to a rehearsal phase after encoding of the list items. However, the ISE magnitude is determined by inherent properties of the irrelevant sound. Recall performance is specifically impaired by sounds with a changing-state characteristic, i.e., by auditory streams which consist of distinct auditory–perceptive objects that vary consecutively. For example, irrelevant sounds consisting of different syllables or tones evoke an ISE, whereas steady state sounds, e.g., continuous broadband noise or repetitions of single syllables or tones, have a minor or no effect.
In general, I've seen the argument that removing the effect can happen through habituating to repeated sounds, but also seem to recall some people showing that prolonged exposure to the irrelevant speech/stimuli before a task can also remove the effect--so maybe people wouldn't suffer as much with stimuli they're familiar with playing in the background. (there's also the issue of the things people actually do vs laboratory tasks).
When I program in my favorite roastery and coffee shop (http://www.roesttrommel.de/info/laufer-gasse.html) I want people, noise and background music. I can concentrate on my my code very well.
However, when I'm at home and I have to concentrate - on the exact same code - I need complete silence. If I leave music running or anything else I can't concentrate.
So there seems to be higher-level processing involved in the brain so that the complete context matters, and not just something as simple as "music/no music" (medium level processing).
I wish I was like von Neumann sometimes. He was known to do his best work on quantum mechanics in the living room with his whole family sitting around talking and the television blasting.
It can be a confidence builder for me to "successfully perform" in a noisy, busy setting. Perhaps someone looked at me working just now, but I didn't flinch! Knuckling down and blocking out the world in a setting like that may help get you into the productivity zone.
I've noticed that in my open office plan just putting my headphones on helps me concentrate, no need for music. I know others will be less apt to interrupt me because I have signaled to them that I'm shutting them out and getting work done. I can devote less awareness to others and more to my tasks.
I tend toward electronia (usually) without vocals. I'll find a suitable artist and get several of their albums and listen to all the albums on loop. For me this is enough to quickly gain that familiarity you mention, hearing the same songs in the same order all day long.
 e.g. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kEEizbmU-hU
I apply one more trick, that I got from some self help book once: my energy level is not always the same, and too little energy is a problem for concentration but so is too much energy. If it's just right, I'll likely be able to find the flow and then the music matters less.
Rage Against the Machine and Rammstein can improve energy levels. Very quiet music (current favorite Carrie & Lowell by Sufjan Stevens) can quiet me down so I can concentrate.
Like "techno" or "dubstep", this word can mean very different things for different people.
Arovane - Tides (2000)
Tim Hecker - Virgins (2013)
Donato Dozzy - K (2010)
Autechre - Amber (1994)
James Holden - The Inheritors (2013)
Andy Stott - Faith In Strangers (2014)
Jon Hopkins - Immunity (2013)
Recondite - On Acid (2012)
Lemon Jelly - Lemonjelly.ky (2000)
Max Graef - Rivers Of The Red Planet (2014)
Pantha Du Prince - Black Noise (2010)
Plaid - Reachy Prints (2014)
Rival Consoles - Sonne (2014)
Shlohmo - Bad Vibes (2011)
St Germain - Boulevard (1995)
Traumprinz - Mothercave (2013)
Valerio Tricoli - Clonic Earth (2016)
Romare - Projections (2015)
Space Dimension Controller - Orange Melamine (2016)
Actress - R.I.P (2012)
Massive Attack - Mezzanine (1998)
Rob Clouth - Clockwork Atom (2014)
And shouts out to Datassette who appears to have done a bunch of the instalments on the music for programming site (mixes/playlists, whatever they are. I've never listened to any of them). This EP is gorgeous:
Datassette - The Aviatrix (2009)
I agree with this a ton, there are certain songs and albums where I've listened to them hundreds of times and familiarity plays a huge role in helping me focus.
> A certain kind of loud, wall-of-sound rock music which is very heavy on distortion with subdued vocals works well but only at night.
Couldn't agree more! See my other comment:
We should trade music!
 Example: http://streamer.psyradio.org:8030/ And make sure you have headphones with a good bass response or a subwoofer. I find the music loses a lot without its bass line.
Bonobo radio on Spotify is a great starting point for laid back EDM that isn't anxiety-inducing but keeps energy up.
I love all forms of jazz too much to listen to it while I work, because I start listening critically and getting into musician mode not coder mode.
Your #1 and #3 definitely work, especially in harmony, but I have found that I do well with songs in langauages that I don't know at all but I like the general style. For example, when I need enegry and work, I listen to Rammstein or The Pillows (Japanese). If I need to relax a bit and work, Seeed (german reggae) or something french are my go to. There's a lot more and sometimes I just put on a Spotify international playlist. The randomness and lack of understandable lyrics helps me, as long as I don't try to learn what they are saying.
EDM) Menno de Jong
Like other continuously mixed, mostly-ambient EDM but favors minor mode and affected arps that keep my brain occupied in it just enough to avoid distraction.
Japanese Drums) The Ondekoza, or any competent group
Pure rhythmic impulse, monotonic yet with remarkable complexity.
Classical) Glenn Gould's Bach, Mozart
Julian Bream, Bach, Lute
Jonas Nordberg, de Visee et al, Theorbo
Perhaps too much for deep flow sessions but extremely stimulating for more inspirational, breaking-down-the-problem "aha" moments.
When it comes to `classical` music, keep in mind that the term encompasses hundreds of years of evolution and dozens of genres or utilities that the music was composed to serve. For our purposes, we may want to stick to "salon" style solo or small ensemble compositions which were made by the masters with the express purpose of stimulating the logical and emotional mind. Church music and large symphonies for example are a completely different animal, but get unfortunately rolled in under this catch-all term.
"When Randy gets back to his cell, he sits crosslegged on his bed with the Walkman and begins dealing out the CDs like cards in a solitaire game. The selection is pretty reasonable: a two-disc set of the Brandenburg Concertos, a collection of Bach organ fugues (nerds have a thing about Bach)"
So I thought 'why not' and got a two-disc set of Bach's Brandenburg Concertos. And sixteen years later I still listen to it when I'm working and have never tired of it. Great music for focus.
On the bright side, I'm now listening to Bach's Brandenburg Concertos and grateful for the explicit choice in music for my afternoon. I'm EDM-d out lately.
Sounds like you're describing My Bloody Valentine...
Lush, I only discovered about four weeks back, but I went in head over heels, they are just great.
And, yes, I agree, there is a certain affinity between this kind of music and dim lighting. It doesn't work in broad daylight. ;-)
alias dronezone='mplayer http://somafm.com/dronezone130.pls'
alias groovesalad='mplayer http://somafm.com/groovesalad130.pls'
alias dronezone='mplayer -playlist http://somafm.com/dronezone130.pls'
alias groovesalad='mplayer -playlist http://somafm.com/groovesalad130.pls'
Yes; tunnel, VPN. But why?
(File > Library > Import Playlist)
AAC: 64k 32k MP3: 192k 128k
Regardless of whether you fall in love with the music, it's worth knowing about her as a pioneer of computing. And yes, she also happens to be a woman.
> Best known for her use of interactive and algorithmic logic as part of the compositional process, Spiegel worked with Buchla and Electronic Music Laboratories synthesizers and subsequently many early, often experimental and prototype-level music and image generation systems, including GROOVE system (1973–1978), Alles Machine (1977) and Max Mathews's RTSked and John R. Pierce tunings (1984, later known as the Bohlen–Pierce scale) at Bell Labs, the alphaSyntauri for the Apple II (1978–1981), the McLeyvier (1981–1985).
I have been listening to the "Perfect for coding & Design" playlist.
Listen here: https://open.spotify.com/user/michaelfeihstel/playlist/10IcC...
Youtube playlist of some of the tracks:
Also I should note that because it's an open playlist sometimes some music gets in that I personally don't agree should be on there but I can see why maybe someone else would put it there. I don't aggressively police it the list but once in a while I'll remove something that obviously doesn't fit
1. My favourite genres are K-Pop and Industrial – it helps that they are also very energetic genres — and my rule is that I can only listen to them while programming. Helps to really put me in the “you’re working now” space (thanks to Julian Shapiro for this tip)
2. I pick one song and repeat it for the entire day, sometimes for several days in a row. I’ve listened songs in the above genres so much that the lyrics don’t become much of a distraction, including new ones.
I also do this, one or a very short playlist of very similar stuff. Seems to help keep my mind locked into a particular state all day/work period. Currently long Daft Punk tracks are doing it for me.
I never consciously did this, other than I obviously went to the music and pressed play, but since about 10 years ago, when I really need to focus on work, I listen to a playlist of what I would call prog trance/house trance, a genre I would absolutely never listen to for the enjoyment of music. It's really weird but it soothes me when working, and it doesn't distract (by me getting too into it), nor distracts me by being annoying.
It reminds me of when I was a teen and I was an extremely tuned night person (still am, but conformed), and was really hard to wake up. Slept through alarm clock at highest setting. I scheduled a playlist on my computer, and allowed it to wake up from hibernation for scheduled events to play through connected speakers. It however ruined any music I used this way, so I had to pick music I didn't like to begin with.
My ambient go-to:s are (in no particular order):
Message To Bears
The Echelon Effect
Boards of Canada
Ulrich Schnauss is very, very good at what he does. Highly recommended.
Function & Vatican Shadow
The 7th Plain
Carbon Based Lifeforms - Tensor
Really most CBL is good.. :) but the best albums are
World Of Sleepers
Theres also artist like
Sync24 (side project from one of the CBL guys)
Other good artists but a bit different ambient genre would be
Abakus (This dude is super productive and his shit is awesome !)
If you like your downtempo more pop then try
That was a short list on the top of my head :)
Here's a Spotify Playlist with lots of good stuff: https://open.spotify.com/user/redconfetti/playlist/03bKMoeCx...
I seem to re-discover them about once per year and I am amazed every time. Twenty Three works great for me when programming.
(I will not be held accountable for your resulting lapse into total insanity after 20 minutes or so.)
And it doesn't appear to be open source, sadly.
You gotta just commit to the song.
I think it's because there are really only about 2-3 parts to the song. It doesn't really build up or down... it's a bit flat. And given that it's flat, you almost don't notice when it loops.
Repeating "X-Static" and "Exhausted" which have a slow plodding droning kind of sound worked for grinding out some lotus script (that was a while ago....)
This is a great way to listen online: http://www.japanaradio.com/
I've actually found that when I get an itch for J-Pop I will scour TuneIn for a "real" radio feed from Japan. Japanaradio was always just a playlist on shuffle (or so it seemed), and there's something about listening to an actual radio station (with commercials and interstitials) that makes it feel less cold and automatic.
This sounds insanely unpleasant. Why would you do this to yourself?
치타(Cheetah) - Crazy Diamond https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rnWtu72LaBg
HyunA(현아) - '어때? (How's this?)' https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y882AFjrSOM
4MINUTE - 미쳐(Crazy) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1nCLBTmjJBY
The pace isn’t quite as energetic as you’d find in EDM or Industrial, but it’s enough for me to get into flow easily.
also Underworld's Second Toughest on the Infants album is always my go to music.
If you liked that one, get the one called NUXX, very long mixes of that album.
I made one of those mixes. Guess which one and i'll fax you some handmade congratulations.
I'm sure this phenomenon has a name, but I don't know it. Another aspect is that I can read English (focusing on that) and listen to Finnish at the same time, and I'll remember both what I heard and what I read. Doesn't work the other way around, or if both are the same language.
For me it's just the latter; vocals don't distract me as long as the song is something I've listened to 20+ times before.
Curiously, I need to match the music to my mood, not the other way around! Any disconnect between how I feel and what is playing gets me distracted very quickly. So some times, I'll be listening to calm ambient, other times I'll be blasting power metal (or even playing some nightcore from youtube). But it's always the mood that sets the music, not the other way around.
When I really need to isolate myself from the outside world to concentrate on a difficult problem, the go-to choice is Incunabula.
I'm not sure whether it's my absolute familiarity with the album, or that fact that it bears listening to on repeat.
Every single album in the Artificial Intelligence series (including the first Autechre) are genre-defining classics.
Another album I listen to a great deal whilst working:
That said, I have varied taste, grind-core, industrial and doom all feature in the mix.
edit: added plaid - can't believe I missed them out, as they're one of my favourite artists.
One of my coworker has a real bassy voice that overlaps over music in my headphones. With that website I can easily create a soundscape that cover his voice and all the surrounding noises.
It's free too!
If you want it more boring even than that you could go for some drone music from the likes of Thomas Köner or Celer, or Gas.
Beyond that lies field recording.
"EDM" is particularly guilty of this.
EDIT: also this may be bothering you excessively if you're listening on a system lacking in sub bass: in electronic music, the crack of the snare is often set to balance the (often enormous) boom of the kick, so if you're not hearing the bottom of the kick the snare might stick out way too much.
For now I use trance, anything that is happy or energetic, harmonic and wih no words.
I have a long playlist that someone created on Spotify with this kind of trance.
Edit: [ah.fm](http://ah.fm/player/) is also good for trance.
I like it a lot for night coding :) Hope you enjoy.
Lately I've been picking up on retro Wave kind of music, I see Com Truise is on the list as well. It's slightly less annoying for other people since there's still something like a melodic component but it doesn't have too much of a build up to a massive drop thing that most EDM has. It rather continues all the time in rhythm.
>Detroit techno is also scary music, scary precisely because its unforgiving repetition reminds us of our immersion in remorseless mechanised, computerised systems. Detroit fetishises this relationship: take drugs, jack your body to the rhythm of the machines
From Techno Futurism (1998)
Kenny Larkin, whatever he released, must have.
Again not from Detroit, but sharing the same vibe: Luke Slater and all his monikers, like Planetary Assault Systems, L.B. Dub Corp and The 7th Plain. All classics.
Some less played, but still great Detroit stars: Claude Young and Octave One. Dig in! https://hardwax.com/detroit/
As an outsider I like Omar S and that group of people as well, but that's not the typical machine techno. There's some great house coming from Detroit as well.
I saw Octave One in Fusion festival 2010, was also one of the best live gigs I've seen.
Their Boiler Room is good. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XW6lxLUBu64