TELECOM Digest OnLine - Sorted: Re: A Phone That Takes Dictation: Testing Voice-to-Text Function

Re: A Phone That Takes Dictation: Testing Voice-to-Text Function
29 Apr 2005 07:21:57 -0700

Monty Solomon wrote:

> This week, my assistant Katie Boehret and I tested a new phone that
> attempts to solve the text-entry problem in a novel way that doesn't
> involve typing, and can be used on a small, inexpensive phone with
> just a numerical keypad. This new phone lets you dictate your text
> messages by just speaking into the phone.
> Unfortunately, it doesn't work very well.

Voice recognition technology still has a long way to go before it
works. I don't like automated answering systems, but I much prefer
working with Touch-Tone signals than voice commands which seem to be
often misunderstood and less precise.

The English language is a horrible thing to automate. Remember
English developed from TWO distinct sources and is a blend of syntax,
sounds, etc. How do you deal with "their there they're"?

Years ago the hospital I worked at had automated voice dictation
recording equipment via the telephone system. One dialed into
the system, then dialed various codes to start/stop/playback
the tape. The tapes were sent out for transcription.

Note this was controlled by rotary phones. I believe dictation
systems was one of the few things the Bell System allowed to be
interconnected with their network. The PBX seized the incoming
extension line in order to get the dial pulses, and passed them onto
to the dictation system. I presume supervision was passed too.
(Music for the PA system was also provided by independent playback
though the PA system itself was Bell and part of the PBX.)

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