Tuesday, May 09, 2006

Playing the Dummy at work

This afternoon i had to speak 350 odd phrases into a Laptop. These phrases will be later played through a dummy in a vehicle at varying speeds to test a new voice recognition system for future cars. I felt a bit of a dick talking to a pc "Enable entertainment system" ; "hospitals and medical centres" ; "Wales" (?) ; "switch to 197.5 FM".

After a short test run the guy running it said "Is that the way you usually talk to a machine or your normal voice". I don't talk to machines that much but I guess he was right it wasn't my natural voice. So I tried to be normal whilst I was tell Mr IBM Notebook to "alter destinataion by 1KM!".

This is not the first time have done this would you believe. Such a bizarre task. Yet before starting my present job I managed to nail 2.5 hours of work with a company working for Renault doing the same thing. That time though i had to do it in a moving car. First we did it in McDonalds Car Park (ooh err Mrs), then at 60Km/h on a country road, and finally at 110 Km/h on the motorway. The system performed so badly at 110Km/h the driver had to turn back on himself as we were running out of highway.

Me: "Call Mr Smith!"
PC: "Please repeat . I do not understand"
Me: "Call Mr Smith!"
PC:"Please repeat . I do not understand"
Me: "CALL MR SMITH!!!!!!!!!"
PC:"Please repeat . I do not understand"
Me: "Oh fuck it give me the phone"
PC:"Calling Mr Smith now"

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