Friday, July 07, 2017

1817 Freudenphone

SOMETIMES a phone is just a phone. (Vienna Tourist Board)

This is a problem for modern psychiatry.  Unfortunately we don’t know any modern psychiatrists with free time, (or even cheap time,) so we had to go back in time and visit our favorite oldie but goodie, Dr. Sigmund Fraud.

And we had to go to Vienna to do it because they didn’t have phones there when Dr. Fraud practiced.
So, doc, here’s the problem: My phone doesn’t understand me.

“Vas is ‘fone,’ please. Is that some kind of parent or guardian in your century?” he asked.

No, Ziggy, a phone is short for telephone which is a device people here in the future use for talking to one another when they are not in the same room.

That stopped the old coot.  But being the scholarly grandfather of shrinkery, he asked for more information.  Now, here’s the real problem.  You’re supposed to be able to be able to use smartphones to connect to the internet and to send text messages.

And like any other computer- based machines, there are many ways to do that.  One of them is talking.  

Dr. Fraud understood that once he learned what a telephone is and does.  And here’s where psychiatry comes in.  Sometimes, your phone doesn’t understand you.

So when you dictate rather than write, the phone puts words in your mouth.  Well, not in your mouth. On your screen and the screen of the recipient.

Example: you tell the phone “Trump is worse than either of the Bushes.”  And on your screen you see “trample the bushes.”

You ask “What is a Formula One car?” And on your screen: “Here is one example of a formula: E = mc2.”

You send a text: “Sorry, I can’t go to your party.” Your recipient gets “Sorry, I can’t go to the potty.”

It’s frustrating.  You can’t get your message out. And for some reason, many of these listening mistakes turn into profanity or obscenity.  No examples of that because this is a family vacation.  NO. This is a family PUBLICATION.

Dr. Fraud, being the brilliant man he was, says “maybe you’re not speaking clearly.”  But it comes out “Maybelle could not love you dearly.”

Ziggy asks why did do you hate your parents? And you wonder why you even made the call.  You ask him what is the meaning of all this and he answers:

“Sometimes a telephone is just a telephone.”

Um… Didn’t you say that about cigars? I need a nap. “Get off my couch.”


--Your telephone is supposed to “learn” your speech patterns thus reducing the number of errors.  But sometimes smartphones are pretty stupid.  Anyone have a really really small dunce cap?

--There is an upside to all this. You have thousands of years of wisdom and knowledge in the palm of your hand. When you realize that, you’re generally looking for a recipe for cauliflower soup.  And the phone has no problems understanding something like that.

--Almost no phone plan still charges by the minute. But for those who still have that, please remember Cellphone Math. One minute plus one minute equals two minutes, but one minute plus three seconds also equals two minutes.

-“I’m going to put on my gravestone ‘he never owned a cell phone.’” -- Jesse Ventura

I’m Wes Richards.  My opinions are my own but you’re welcome to them. ®
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