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By Wayne William Cipriano
The other day our daughter, Renee’, sent Rosalie’s cell phone a picture of her new kitten with a caption describing “Parker’s” most recent adventure. When I saw it I thought of a funny reply. Rosalie laughed and suggested I send it back to Renee’. She passed her cell phone to me and I began laboriously pecking out the letters of my message, backspacing every third or fourth character to correct my errors. By the time I had suffered through it, my message wasn’t nearly as funny as it seemed when I started. So, I got to thinking…what is needed here are some cell phone improvements.
By making cell phones smaller and smaller, the manufacturers have developed keyboards impossible for someone with averaged-size thumbs to operate without mistakes. Why not do away with the keyboards entirely and substitute a Voice Recognition System that would translate spoken words into print? No more tired, dislocated thumbs! Such a system could translate 10,000 or so of the most common English words, and I wouldn’t have to worry about spelling as the device would select the proper word by “hearing” my voice.
And, since we wouldn’t have to proofread our messages for spelling errors or deleted words, it could be sent immediately as we spoke – not at the end of the message.
The person with whom we are communicating could have a similar device with Written Word Recognition Software and Sonic Reproduction Capability that would receive the written message, change it to speech, and do so with no time lag at all.
You would have very small devices, no keyboards, no misspellings, no thumb fatigue, no long transmission intervals, and understandable “voices”. You could even build into the devices several different speech types and patterns – male/female, young/old, fast/slow, Southern/Bostonian/Californian/ New England and so on, that we could program to accompany messages from specific persons so that over time we would recognize who was “speaking” by the “voice” we had selected for them. And, very important to me personally, I wouldn’t have to search for and squint at evasive messages displayed on tiny, tiny screens.
We could call such a device an Instantaneously-Transmitting, Remotely-Accessing, Sonicly-Rectified Communications Instrumentality – but, we’d surely need a better name for effective marketing. What about this? We could combine two Greek word fragments and call it a tele – phone.
I wonder if something that sounds so useful would ever catch on?