Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Stuck In a Loop That You Can’t Get Out Of

I don’t know what it is about me and the operation of phones, but sometimes I feel like I’m trapped in a “white hole” (see the show “Red Dwarf” for the reference), just repeating the same moment over and over again.

For example, sometimes I pick up the phone to call sis, and I call her cell phone when I meant to call her at home. So then I hang up and go to dial her home, but instead dial her cell again. So I hang up, make a sound of irritation, then dial her home fast and furiously . . . but really dial her cell phone again. This can go on for a full minute or two, with me getting angrier and angrier at myself (or, as rr and I say, “very grr”) as my fingers repeatedly dial the wrong number as if independent from the control of my brain.

Anyway, this morning I guess my phone thought it was be amusing to spend a few minutes playing a similar kind of game. Like many people, I have voice command on my phone, and so I can tell it call someone programmed into my phone book without me having to physically dial the number. This feature is great for dialing while driving. On my phone, all the phone numbers for one person are stored together, and you just select from which number you want to call. So, for example, if I tell it to call mom, it will ask me first I want to call her home, and if I say no, it will ask me if I want to call her cell, and if I say no, it will ask me if I want to call her work number.

So this morning I decide to call rae at home. I have that programmed in my phone under “us.” This is the conversation I had with my phone:

[I press the voice command button]
Phone: Please say a command. Beep!
Me: Call someone? [it only recognizes commands from me if I phrase them as a question]
Phone: Please say a name. Beep!
Me: Us?
Phone: Did you say “us”? Beep!
Me: Yes. [“yes” and “no” answers, on the other hand, it only recognizes if I say very firmly].
Phone: Call home? Beep!
Me: Yes.
Phone: We do not recognize that entry. Please say a name. Beep! [and at this point, I thought, ok, maybe I stored it as a cell phone number, so I’ll try again but ask to dial the cell number.]
Me: Us.
Phone: Did you say “us”? Beep!
Me: Yes.
Phone: Call home? Beep!
Me: No.
Phone: Did you say “us”? Beep!
Me: Yes.
Phone: Call home? Beep!
Me: No. [very firmly]
Phone: Did you say “us”? Beep!
Me: Yes. [also very firmly]
Phone: Call home? Beep!
Me: No. [starting to get irritated]
Phone: Did you say “us”? Beep!
Me: Yes.
Phone: Call home? Beep!
Me: No.
Phone: Did you say “us”? Beep!
Me: Yes.
Phone: Call home? Beep!
Me: No!

At this point, I was very grrd, to say the least. I just hung up, because it clearly wasn’t going to let me make any phone calls.

5 comments:

Amstaff Mom said...

Wow. That's madness.

Mine has pretty good voice recognition, but sometimes I'm like, "where did you get THAT from THIS?"

Mine you have to say "Call Mom Mobile" or "Call Mom Home" It has to be one continous sentence. And it does want a firm yes/no answer.

I wonder how they program that stuff.

RR said...

Yesterday, I got trapped in a loop, too. I repeatedly reached for the mouse for the computer, then remembered that I was using the laptop, so the mouse wouldn't work (as it wasn't hooked up to the laptop).

Deals On Wheels said...

Yeah...and you couldn't think of 6 weird things, either?!?! :P

JLR said...

AM: I think after years of this, we will just shorten all of our conversations that way: "Go mall now." "Eat dinner 5."

rr: It's so frustrating! And you just get madder and madder at yourself every time you do it!

deals: I will be posting something on that later. Hold horses.

Amstaff Mom said...

RR - I have my work laptop on the desk next to my desktop, and although I haven't tried to control my laptop through my mouse YET, it's only a matter of time. Because I do that at least once every time I do that. I think I even thought I could copy/paste on time from one computer to the other. Yea. Now THAT'S sad.


JLR - I already do that in conversation! It's called ASL!!! In ASL you also don't say you're "taking a class" you TAKE-UP a class. And yes, I've said "I take-up ASL II" a few times now. My ASL is getting better and my English is going down the tubes.

HA! England/Tube! OK, I'll go now.