Researchers from the National Research Council of Canada have created VoiceCode, an application that allows computer programmers to dictate program code to their computer, with virtually no need to touch the keyboard.
VoiceCode can learn and adapt to the ways that computer programmers abbreviate such names, and match a full spoken phrase with its likely abbreviations. But such heuristics are bound to fail once in a while, so what happens in this case? VoiceCode again follows a basic principle of interaction design: in case of error, give the user a quick way to recover. Whether the error was made in the stage of voice recognition or in translating natural language to program code, it can be easily corrected by selecting one of the alternative interpretations presented in a popup window.
As impressive as this video may be, don’t rush to throw away your keyboards just now. You may escape RSI, but VoiceCode authors are quick to point out that a similar condition, voice strain may be linked to the continuous use of speech recognition products. One can only wonder if such problems may also arise with more futuristic input technologies, such as brain wave reading.
It’s funny how technology works. It seems as though solving one problem always tends to create another problem. And the cycle contines…
Still, an interesting sounding product. Maybe the best solution is to mix it up…use voice software sometimes and type the rest of the time.
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