Former Apple Employee Reveals How He Snuck The Mac’s Iconic Startup Sound Onto Mac OS


Jim Reekes, a former Apple employee who was behind the Mac’s famous boot chime, has explained in a new interview how he (alongside another group of employees) were able to change the chime to the iconic startup sound we associate with OS X today.

Reekes said that they were able to sneak the audio file containing the famous startup sound onto a Mac without the permission of their managers. During the interview, he said:

“I just hated it. I just could not stand it. Your Mac just crashed. Again. You’ve lost your work. Again. You’re waiting for this thing to boot up. Again. That’s the audience, just a bunch of pissed off frustrated people who are annoyed and you’re wasting their time.”

The following ten-second video contains the Mac’s original startup sound:

Reekes decided to ask his manager if he could replace the existing startup sound with his new chime, and of course he was denied. He went on to create a new, more appealing sound that was meant to change everyone’s mood. Then, the team put the audio file on the computer without any permission.

“I had to change everyone’s mood, so I was thinking a zen-like, meditative sound similar to a gong or chanting ‘om. I played it for them and then they liked it and so when no-one was around, we put it into the build.”

Here is a short video to remind you what the improved boot chime sounds like:

Sure enough, everyone liked Reekes’ new startup sound and it has been found on Mac computers ever since.

[via Business Insider]