Airplane [Cabin] Mode

We know from experience that Airplane Mode is a complete disconnect from networks. But what is Airplane Cabin Mode (ACM)?

Little secret: I’ve been writing in ACM for many years. It’s a simulated environment designed to inject the white noise of jet engines and 600 mile-per-hour wind along with the intermittent tones and background sounds of an aircraft cabin at 40,000 feet.

This is the world I lived for many decades. From LA, to Chicago, NYC, Frankfurt, London, Paris, and Johannesburg - this was my life as a software engineer and entrepreneur. Almost forgot - Auckland, Sydney, Hobart, Singapore, Tokyo, Hong Kong, Tai Pai, Melbourne, Perth, and Kuala Lumpur.

And I must mention the little village of Warrnambool, Victoria, Australia which was the third stop on a technical lecture series “Email is where Knowledge Goes to Die”. That phrase was coined in an airline cabin over the Pacific.

Some of my best engineering work and some arguably clever ideas were developed in cabin mode. In the early 90s I created a graphics generator tool for a small company in Bristol, UK. It was 100% developed, tested, and documented during 11 transatlantic flights.

Only recently have I missed that environment, and why I decided to simulate it in Coda, Substack, and a few other places.

As I write this post, I can hear the familiar flight-attendant call-button from time to time. It’s a subtle reminder of where I am - locked in a tube with not much more than my thoughts. It’s perfect. Cabin mode is my productivity enclave.

The sounds and sensations are just enough to trick my mind into thinking - there’s nothing else I could be doing right now, so I might as well take my time and do my best work.

Airplane Cabin Mode Template

There’s little point sharing this as a template. You can create your own in minutes. You want it to be handy and ready to provide a rapid departure. The trick is to add a page to your document that has a full page embed to your chosen sound stream. I use this one, but Youtube is loaded with options.

With a sound (or video) stream in full-page mode, you can play it and it will continue to play in the background even though you are writing in another page of the document. It will also continue to play when you switch browser tabs for research.

Have a great flight!

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