As I type this article by hand as opposed to using voice recognition, I am watching the Daily Show. I can multi task and write while I watch TV. However, its not always easy to use voice recognition while other things are taking place in your environment.
For example earlier today I was working outside on my deck writing an article using Dragon NaturallySpeaking. (By the way I just switched to Dragon NaturallySpeaking while I’m watching TV the TVs playing in the background on my surround sound system) so I was working outside and my four-year-old daughter came up while I was writing. She asked me a question and I rapidly responded to her and lo and behold the document that I was writing suddenly had transcribed my words to my daughter.
So I had to delete that particular line and start fresh while I quickly attempted to mute the microphone on my computer to continue the conversation with my daughter. My family has many times witnessed me working with voice recognition, and maybe too many times they have seen me hold up an index finger to shhhhhsshhh them as they walk into a room while I am transcribing an article or other document trying to get to a stopping point.
Just like people using hands-free headsets with their cell phones there are some social faux pas’s that can come about while people are working with voice recognition. It’s very easy to stop typing and pay attention to someone when they enter your office. It’s a little bit more difficult when someone enters your office and you cannot say a single acknowledging word to them while you attempt to shut off your microphone.
There are verbal commands that you can use such as “go to sleep” that will temporarily turn off your microphone. However if your boss walks into your office and you immediately respond with the command “go to sleep,” your boss may not take that command very well.
Again like many things involving voice-recognition, this is a new medium for composing, writing and transcribing your thoughts into text. It takes a great deal of practice but also takes a great deal of adaptability to both the user of the program as well as the people that they interact with their environment.
I’m finishing this article just as the Daily Show is finishing and I have realized that I can successfully transcribed this article without the TV causing too many conflicting sounds that would mess up the transcription. I have another website where I work as a movie reviewer with a number of other writers. As I’m sitting here composing this article about Dragon NaturallySpeaking I’m thinking to myself that I could conceivably review movies while they play. I could keep myself busy transcribing my notes or possibly even a rough draft of the review as I go.
The bottom line is that there are many pitfalls but there is a great deal of potential for this technology. It’s probably part of the reason why Microsoft recently spent close to $1 billion acquiring a company to provide them with a greater voice recognition capability. The users of voice-recognition are the ones that will break the most ground with this software and to do that they must use it and find new and exciting ways to adapt the technology to their needs. Like any technology there will be challenges in situations where the technology does not work or where the technology causes serious problems. That is no different than any other technology that man is ever invented created or used. It’s up to the users to get more benefit than harm out of any tool that they picked up. Fortunately Dragon NaturallySpeaking provides a solution that is relatively easy to find the benefits and avoid the problems.
Now if someone would just invent Dragon Naturally Editing Artificial Intelligence, I could use that software to go back to this article and find all of the small nuance like Word substitution problems that have been created. When that technology is invented, I predict that everyone will use this tool.