Monthly Archives: November 2015

Once Up, Twice Down (not as depressing as it sounds)

This week I made a discovery.

Just in the way Captain Cook “discovered” Australia, my “discovery” isn’t new to everyone. It’s just new to me.

While standing at a bank of lifts in the hospital I noticed that when an elevator arrived and was going up it would ding once, and ding twice when going down. Hashtag observation.

I was more excited by this than a grown-up should be. As I made my way through the hospital, I tested the other bank of lifts in Block D, then the lifts in Block C, Block B and Block A. Hashtag curious.

Cairns Hospital from the shipping channel

From L-R: Block A, Block B, Block C & Block D. Source: https://instagram.com/p/3VfQHYKB_a/

That’s science baby: make an observation, come up with a hypothesis, then repeatedly test it to see if holds true. As it happens, all of the hospital lifts beep once if they’re going up and beep twice if they’re going down. Sample size: 1 hospital, 5 banks of lifts. Hashtag sciency.

Naturally, I tweeted and facebooked about it. Hashtag share the love.

It seems that the one-up two-down audible alarm holds true unless the lifts/buildings are old and/or have lifts which do not announce their arrival with an audible sound at all. Hashtag stealthy.

Anyway, I’m still intrigued by my one-ding-up-two-dings-down discovery. For me it raises two questions and a hypothesis:

Question 1: What else is happening right in front of me that I’m not noticing?

Question 2: What other secret tips and tricks do vision-impaired people have that they’re not telling us?

Hypothesis: Even when the big stuff isn’t going all that well, there’s joy to be had in the small stuff.

End Notes

There is a fun discussion about this subject on Reddit, see “Life Pro Tips: Arriving elevator dings once if going up, twice if going down

Do the lifts/elevators in your hospital/office/apartment beep once on the way up and twice on the way down? I’m keen to hear from you comments/responses are welcome in the space below.

Paul McNamara, 14th November 2015
Short URL: meta4RN.com/ding