Wednesday, 18 April 2012

P is for Phones and Predictive Text

P

Grrr...

My mobile and I have a vexed relationship.  It's right on the edge of irreconcilable differences and divorce.  Our needs are so different. 

I want something to make phone calls and send the occasional text for me.  It has much grander plans.  It nags me constantly about updated accounts, fresh ways to link to my friends, demands that I use all its gadgets.  Frankly, it's a bit needy. 

All of that is bearable.  Where our relationship really breaks down is over sending texts.  It thinks it knows me better than I know myself.  I have news for my phone.  It does not.

Take, for example, the little matter of Northallerton.  This charming market town emerges from my phone's predictive text mechanism as Mortgakleston.  Sondheim appears as Some hens.  School becomes scowl.  Winter turns to water.  Partridge in a pear tree became partridge in a rear tripe.  Grudging props for getting partridge right I suppose. 

I'm aware that I need to spell out the words for the phone.  It can't be expected to know these things without some input from me.  However, even after the relevant words have been carefully given to the beast it remains smugly convinced that it knows better. 

Carrier pigeons anyone?

19 comments:

  1. That's why I stick to Morse code...

    Love your blog. I enjoy your writing. And I'm notoriously hard to please in that regard! So consider yourself extra special!!!1!

    Dave the Goof

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    1. That's just made my day :) I consider myself extremely flattered.

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  2. Similar problem with this iPad. And the sneaky thing seems to do it once I take my eyes off the screen to look at the key pad? I typed 'moobs' the other day, and it replaced it with 'noobs', so I text ended up talking about 'man noobs'! Yes, I can feel you smirking and nodding, saying, 'predictive got it right'.

    I have to agree with the gentleman above, I too, like your writing style - it makes me somewhat jealous ;)

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    1. Seeing what the most basic Nokia can do to stuff up my life, I'm leaving the higher tech strictly alone. I'm in a cold sweat just thinking about using an iPad.

      This is all very flattering, Mark, but you're a dab hand with words yourself, so less of the jealousy if you please :)

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  3. There's a joke in here somewhere about tin cans and a ball of twine.

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    1. Good idea. And probably much easier than getting a sensible text out of the thing.

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  4. Ha! This definitely sounds familiar. The amount of time I spend re-reading a text before I send it, just to check the predictive text hasn't gone mad, is ridiculous.

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    1. Scary it is. I'm sure I've sent complete dross to so many people.

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  5. Damn You Autocorrect is a great collection of such fails (this site is very much not safe for work or children...) and whenever I read it, I'm usually a helpless heap of giggles three pages in.

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    1. That's a fearsomely addictive site. I sometimes use it as a carrot to encourage me to do some actual work.

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  6. Hi Amanda .. I hate texting .. and I type what I want and it alters it sometimes without me realising .. then it takes me x amount of time longer to clarify my thoughts (if any!!) ..

    So I can empathise with you - I envy the people who can master all the state of art things!

    We await thursday - R for which castle?!

    Cheers Hilary

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  7. Love you humor. And I'm your 100th follower!!!! :D
    Also, smoke signals.

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  8. This is hilarious. And I feel exactly the same way. I had an Android and got rid of it for a more basic one. Thanks for the visit, comment, and follow. I'm now one of yours.
    Karen

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    1. You are more than welcome :)

      My Nokia is about as basic as it's possible to buy and still does this stuff.

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  9. 'I want something to make phone calls and send the occasional text for me. It has much grander plans. It nags me constantly about updated accounts, fresh ways to link to my friends, demands that I use all its gadgets. Frankly, it's a bit needy.'

    Ha! I love this. I don't think the damned thing needs props for 'partridge.' And, yeah, I'm in for the carrier pigeon idea. Or smoke signals. Hand-written letters!

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    1. So, morse code, carrier pigeon, smoke signals, tin cans and string or just plain old pencil and paper...

      Hey, we could start a communications revolution!

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  10. I have a basic phone that works great. Can't do much online but I can get and send texts and calls. It was $80 at Walmart and I use the $45/month Straight Talk plan of unlimited minutes and texts.

    Have you seen that hilarious website with the phone autocorrect texts?

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    1. I have indeed. Jedediah linked to it a couple of comments up :)

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  11. I don't relly use predictive text... dunno why... judging from the above, I'd say back to basics... good old-fashioned pen & paper... LOL!

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