Yesterday, I ripped the sound out of my computer and discovered I really liked it that way. Quiet is great. Unfortunately, it's not practical or realistic. In order to take a step towards compromise, I decide to create a set of (21) notification sounds that wouldn't be quite so intrusive. If you want your alerts to be a little more soothing, you can download them for free.
Image: Nathan Jones.
I'd never tried to make alert sounds before, but it was actually a lot of fun. I worked with a variety of software instruments I normally use for making music and put them to the task of forming soothing alert sounds instead. After an hour of playing around, I ended up with 21 options I liked, zipped them up, and uploaded them for everyone to download. The package includes every alert in both MP3, AIFF and iPhone Ringtone format (so you can use them on your mobile as well). You're welcome to convert them to any other format you prefer.
The process for adding these alerts to any customisable application will vary, but your operating system is a different story. Here are instructions for Windows, OS X, and iOS. (If you want to change your app alert tones, PushTone will do it for jailbroken users and iExplorer will do it for regular users.)