My newest venture is to train my Dragon, Hamish. I had been looking at a NaturallySpeaking speech recognition software program for quite some time. I was reluctant to try it out at first; however my birthday came along and – how can you refuse a birthday present? Now, with my headsets fully in place, Hamish is positioned to hear every syllable I say. So far the project has been a great success. True, I’ve only been using the software for two weeks. Even so, my Dragon is responding to the training with great enthusiasm. It is quite likely, however, that I’m the one who is being trained. I have learned a great deal since I met Hamish. First, I slur my words. Second, I talk too fast. Third, I think people can read my mind. With Hamish by my side, my speech has become more distinct, even crisp.
It will not be long before the keyboard is considered obsolete – and cursive writing will be relegated to the annals of history in much the same way as calligraphy. Only artists will keep the traditions of the past. The keyboards will be recycled. Or maybe they will be kept in a museum along with spinning wheels and transistor radios.
At this moment, what I am saying is being written on the screen in front of me with about a one second delay. I feel like I’m going to be beamed up by Scotty at any moment. I hope that Hamish does not turn into Hal.
Frank Lloyd Wright once said about technology: “If it keeps up, man will atrophy all his limbs but the push-button finger.” Now it seems that, with Hamish, my push-button finger will atrophy as well. But never fear; I’m using my walking poles. But that’s another story…