Thursday, April 22, 2010

Useful Tools

Typically my best blog ideas happen at the most stupid times: while driving, while in the shower, sleeping. Its really hard to type while driving (in the state of Maryland its illegal to text while driving, but the law says nothing about typing out a blog post or e-mailing, so that’s all I do), or in the shower, so I needed something to help me remember my brilliant rants. Being somewhat “scattered” by the time I get any place to write down these ideas (and if I pulled over to write them, I’d never get anywhere), I’d forget them or be off on a whole other tangent and forget the original brilliant rant.

Enter the iPhone, which introduced a “voice memo” feature. Just click and button and talk. The only problem with that is that I hate the sound of my own voice. I sound like a special needs 13 year old boy (in my humble opinion), instead of a special needs 47 year old woman (who acts like a special needs 13 year old boy) I’m pretty sure I can say “special needs” without pissing off a group of people, as “retard”, “tard”, and “short bus” are on the list of words that piss people off. Please note that I’m only using those words as an example and you shouldn’t jump down my throat for using them, but then again, whatever you bunch of tards that would actually jump down my throat... there, no I just gave you reason.

As an example of my voice, and probably the way I look, I harken back to my post high school graduation, where I’m standing in a Kroger at the meat department with my mom who happened to bump into someone she knew. My mom, ever so proud, announced to the woman that her daughter just graduated from high school and had joined the Air Force. The woman turned to me and said “Oh, so what is your son going to do when he graduates?”

Ok, so back then I was all of 90 pounds, not very curvy, had short hair and took after my dad, but still, come on, seriously? I wanted to respond like this:

But instead, simply responded: “I want to wear pretty dresses and date your son”.

Back to the voice memo thing... yeah, so I’m not doing that. Instead, the wonderful people who develop iPhone apps came out with a totally cool thing called Dragon Dictation. This thing is so freaking cool because you can hit a button, babble on, it converts your speech to text and then copy into an e-mail or SMS or anywhere. Its PERFECT! Well, sorta if you don’t talk like a special needs 13 year old boy.

My first attempt at babbling something at it created this:

“Blog post on a ninth-inning making a list would you like eggs or bacon and people responding the former or latter half of the difference between friend and add text me your pagan changing you get to keep whatever phone you have ever landed in the Maxima government take.”

Um... wow!

What that translates to is: I wanted to do a blog post on annoying people that, when asked if they’d like eggs or bacon, respond with “the former” or “the latter”. Seriously WTF is up with that? Instead of just saying “eggs” or “bacon” they actually have to process a whole new set of brain cells to come up with “former” or “latter” and I seriously can’t comprehend what is former or latter. Is former the eggs or bacon? Is latter the eggs or bacon? WHY CAN’T THEY JUST F’ING SAY BACON????

The same thing applies to when someone wants to know how much you make, versus how much you actually get in your check, that whole “gross” or “net” crap. Why can’t they just say “what’s your take home pay?” I seriously don’t consider what I “make” as what I actually “make” because I never see that money, I just see what I get after the Government slips its hand in my pocket and takes out most of my paycheck, so to go around bragging that I make (for instance) $70K is a bit pretentious when I certainly don’t come ANYWHERE near depositing that amount in my bank. I tend to remember that “net” is what I actually get in the bank by thinking of myself holding a net, and the government throwing change at me (didja catch that snarky “change” reference... hehehe) and I get to keep whatever lands in the net... which isn’t a whole hell of a lot.

So then my friend HR Human and I were chatting on Facebook and I was explaining the whole Dragon Dictation thing and how it worked and I had a brilliant idea... what if this Dragon Dictation thing was actually a way for people to finally communicate with animals! I’ve seen spoofs where there’s things that claim to translate what your dog or cat is really trying to tell you, but what if this thing actually did that! That would be so cool! So, the next time Loki, the Mutatoe Siberian Husky, started yapping at me about something, I hit the button and pointed it at me, and this is what it wrote out:


Hmmm. I’m still trying to decipher it, but it sounds somewhat important.


seapeanut said...

woah, do they have it for the android phones? cause i totally want to try that with my cat when he's getting increasingly annoyed with me that i don't understand what his meows indicate....

Huskymom said...

I hate the whole former/latter thing too. My mnemonic is "latter" sounds like "later", so it refers to the item that appears "later" in the sentence. Not great, but it's the only way I can figure it out! (We tried the Dragon Dictation years ago--decided it would take too long to train to our voices. But a neat concept--would help with the cramps from typing and stave off carpal tunnel syndrome. Excellent for disabled folks I suspect...I need one of those translators for my Rubi: all her shrieks sound the same to me!)

HR Human said...

I get former and latter confused also. And the word "following" confuses me. I can't explain why. And I have a degree in linguistics, so I should be able to!