Contrary to your very safe assumptions, the Windsor Hum is not a well-regarded shoegaze band. It is not a deviant sex act practiced exclusively on the frozen tundra of Canada. And not, it's not the plaintive wail of the Yeti across the lonesome plains. Okay, actually it might be that last thing -- we don't really know. The Canadian government is aiming to find the source of the mysterious "Windsor Hum," an unexplained sound plaguing Windsor, Ontario that is slowly driving residents of the city insane. Okay, well, maybe not insance, but it's definitely irking them.
Researchers at Newcastle University
wanted to learn more about why our brains make us recoil from unpleasant sounds
like nails on a chalkboard or screaming. So they looked at the brains of a group of volunteers (who no doubt regretted their decision after this test) and played them a series of sounds to find where the recoil response was coming from. They also asked people to rate the sounds they heard from most to least pleasant, leaving them with a (slightly less than definitive because of its small sample size) list of the very worst sounds on the planet.
At the top? The sound of a knife scraping a bottle
. You can get a look at the rest of the list after the jump.