Thursday, November 8, 2012

When Technology Goes Wrong--Fun with Handsfree

Nohands

As you've probably noticed, I love to give my Nerd a hard time about his phone.  He's a Windows Phone guy and people have asked if he works for Microsoft because he talks about his phone that much.  Of course, when something on his phone doesn't work quite right, I am quick to remind him that I don't have that problem with my iPhone!

A couple of weeks ago, he was using the hands free voice recognition software on his phone to text his sister.  The kids were in room too (you'll see why that is an important piece of information in a moment).  Usually, he'll say, "Text so and so" and his phone will say, "Texting so and so, say your message."  This time, when he said, "Text my sister", for some reason, maybe some ambient noise in the room, the phone didn't recognize what he said.  Instead, it decided to do a search for what it 'heard', so it said, "Searching for three-way sex, my sister".  No really, that is what it said--out loud, with the kids in the room.  I nearly fell over laughing.  It was so funny to see the look on his face and watch him jump to cancel the voice program.  Our youngest didn't get what was so funny, but that didn't stop her from laughing.  Our 10 year old was concerned that the phone used a "bad word" about her aunt.  I still laugh over it now because it was so unexpected and I don't think I've seen my Nerd get so embarrassed about something.  He told me I couldn't Facebook it, but he didn't say I couldn't blog about it!

The very next day, the girls and I were coming home from church with my parents in my dad's van.  Dad had a golf game scheduled with his friend and wanted to let him know we'd be home soon, so he turned on his bluetooth handsfree device.  My dad isn't technically inclined, so I was impressed that he had bluetooth and knew how to use it.  He kept telling it who to call, but it kept coming up with different people in dad's phone book.  Every time it did, we all started laughing, so poor dad got frustrated.  I eventually used his phone to dial the number for him so that he could talk using his bluetooth, but his friend wasn't home after all of that effort and dad was able to call him when we got home.

Handsfree devices and voice commands are supposed to make it easier to communicate, but I find that they end up being more annoying than anything else.  We have a Blue Ant something like this in our car:




It's handy, but I only use it when I have to because to get it to dial out, you have to say, "Blue Ant, speak to me." You have to say it loudly to get it to respond, so if you have the windows down, you get some funny looks if you are alone in the car. It's not a bad little device, but I prefer dialling the phone, talking, hanging up and then driving. When I used to work late, I liked having handsfree so that I could talk to my Nerd while I was driving home, but now that I work from home, I don't drive as much, so I don't use it at all. I leave it to the Nerd instead.

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