Kevin Brennan Writes About What It's Like

Talkin’ the talk


Hey kids, I just discovered something terrific! It’s a function on my Mac that allows me to dictate text instead of typing it with my decrepit fingers. Now instead of risking carpal tunnel syndrome, I can just lean back in my chair with mic in hand and jabber jabber jabber. By the time you see it in the form of a blog post, it will appear as if I actually put some thought into the text. This is but an illusion.

Think of the possibilities. Instead of using both hands to type, you can be doing other more important things while creating your blog posts. You can eat something. You can play video games. You can read email, write a text on your phone, watch YouTube or Hulu, gaze longingly out the window as life moves along. You can probably do it while you drive! It’s the ultimate in multitasking.

At the moment, however, I’m not utilizing this tool to the maximum because all I’m doing is dictating this text. It feels a little bit counterproductive. In fact, I’m already beating myself up for not using my time more effectively by doing five other things at the same time. Maybe I’ll get the hang of this as time goes on but meanwhile you’ll have to wonder whether I’ve dictated a post or spent more than three seconds thinking about its content and actually composing it.

If you’d like to test this kind of software, you don’t have to purchase Dragon, since both Mac and Windows come equipped with speech-recognition features. They may not have all the bells and whistles that Dragon has, but they’ll get the job done.

So this is my first dictated post, and there’s a good chance that it could be my last. The thing is, you’ll never know…

Oh, one more thing — the software isn’t particularly great grammar-wise, so you’ll definitely have to go back and edit. I might have spent more time proofreading this than I did speaking it…

(PS — I’ve just confirmed that you can dictate text directly into the WordPress new-post screen, and, at least on my system, you can use the computer’s internal microphone. That makes for some super-quick blog post entries!)


10 comments on “Talkin’ the talk

  1. sknicholls
    March 21, 2014

    I have a pet Dragon but she doesn’t like my southern accent.

    • Kevin Brennan
      March 21, 2014

      That’s funny. I heard somewhere she has a problem with Scottish accents too.

  2. J. S. Collyer
    March 21, 2014

    Bitchin’ 😀

  3. Phillip McCollum
    March 21, 2014

    I like it, but I know my blog posts would be filled with “uhms” and “uhhs”

    • Kevin Brennan
      March 21, 2014

      I wonder how it knows how to spell “uhm.” I did find that it misunderstood me quite a bit. I guess I mumbled…

  4. 1WriteWay
    March 23, 2014

    I once used a microphone when I was “taking” notes for a college. It was pretty useful in that case since it saved time (I could just read off from the page, rather than stop my reading, jot down the note, go back to reading and then later try to decipher my handwriting which meant having to find the page again because of course I forget to write down the page number … ). But multitask while talking? I can barely walk and talk at the same time. And I wouldn’t recommend dictating while you’re eating a burrito 😉
    The biggest advantage I see is that sometimes the ideas are in my head but once I try to put them to paper or screen, they disappear. Maybe dictation can help bridge that gap. Or similar to my college paper example, if I want to write a post with a few quotes, dictation could help with that first rough draft. Oh, great, now I’ve admitted that I actually go through drafts of my posts ;(

    • Kevin Brennan
      March 23, 2014

      I remember a period when I did letters on cassette tapes and then mailed them to people. The idea was, they’d record a response on the same tape and send it back. Nobody ever did that!

      I’m not too big on multitasking. Especially while eating a burrito.

      BTW, I’m not surprised that you do drafts of your posts. It shows. They’re always terrific!

      • 1WriteWay
        March 23, 2014

        Well, *blush* I’m glad my drafting pays off 😉

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This entry was posted on March 21, 2014 by in Et alia, Writing and tagged , .
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