A Walk In London: Digital Voice Recognition Poetry Slam

Written by Russ Johnson

In an effort to recover a lost radio script, Travel Editor Russ Johnson used voice recognition software to come up with something quite different from the original. He recorded the results.

Voice recognition software works fine if the language is not complex.  At my house, Siri on our Apple iPhone and the voice recognition on our Android smartphone are usually dead-on for short phrases.

But challenge them with some unconventional English and the results can be quite interesting.

Check this out. Just this week, after a hard drive crash, I fed a radio feature I did on a walk through London through the software grinder to regenerate a script. What is the worst that could happen. The result was what I’d describe as a combo of a snockered James Joyce with something strange, something that would make even Allen Ginsberg howl in terror. Call it a digital poetry slam.

The original script began like this:

As a Monty Python fan, London in my mind’s eye is a city of silly walks: eccentric lopes, tortured tangos and goofy goose steps.

Here is the original script — recovered by manual transcription —  and the original audio feature.

Now here is my recording of the machine translation. 

I guess I should really keep my day job.

I’m Russ Johnson and this is aNewDomain.net. Congrats on the relaunch.