It seems that Chrome (and its Flash component) has grabbed all the audio on the machine for itself, leaving no sound for any other applications. I am running KDE with PulseAudio. Is there a way in the myriad different applications* that handle sound on Linux to convince Chrome to give up its death grip on audio so that other applications can get a chance to make noise?
*- Looked at alsamixer, kmixer and Phonon (KDE multimedia configurer). Settings are a-ok, no indication that one application has hogged the audio device.