The University of Illinois has developed a technology to optimize the operation of typical noise canceling systems in headphones. It is not suitable for mobile solutions, but it has excellent prospects for implementation in a smart office. Plus, it literally blocks other people's ears from accessing confidential information.
Existing noise cancellation systems read the incoming spurious sound and generate an identical sound wave, but in antiphase so that they mutually suppress each other. The problem is that the microphone for picking up noise is located right in the headphones, which is why the response time of the system is minimal and sometimes malfunctions. But what if we just take and move the microphone away, say, to the front door of the office where the user is sitting?
Wireless communication is a million times faster than acoustic signal - having received a signal from a microphone, the system has an enormous amount of time to analyze it and generate the perfect blockage. Or only partial blocking, if the information is important - you can weed out the office buzz, but skip the commands of the authorities. Studies have shown that small in-ear headphones can be dispensed with in this case. If necessary, microphones can be made without a storage device, with direct signal transmission to headphones to exclude the possibility of secret sound recording.
Moreover, microphones can be placed in all corners of the "smart office" and generate personal signals for all employees as they move around the room. And to differentiate access rights so that a person with a guest headset is guaranteed not to hear anything, except for continuous noise, even if he deliberately tries to find out something. True, he can simply take off the headphones, but for such cases there is a guard with truncheons.