Siri Dictation For iPad Like Asmiov's 'Transcriber'

Apple's Siri now enables voice dictation on the brand-new next-generation iPad. Just press the special voice dictation key (shown below), and Siri does the rest.


(iPad Dictation, thanks to Siri)

The resulting text is shown in whatever font you like.

When I saw this demonstrated in the recent iPad keynote, I was immediately reminded of the transcriber from Isaac Asimov's classic 1953 novel Second Foundation:

The salesman had said - There is no other model as compact on the one hand and as adaptable on the other. It will spell and punctuate correctly according to the sense of the sentence. Naturally, it is a great aid to education since it encourages the user to employ careful enunciation and breathing in order to make sure of the correct spelling, to say nothing of demanding a proper and elegant delivery for correct punctuation.

The machine had been delivered two days ago on her first adult birthday. She had said "But father, everybody - just everybody in the class who has the slightest pretensions to being anybody has one. Nobody but some old drips would use key machines-"

But when it was delivered, it was the model she wanted... and copy was turned out in a charming and entirely feminine handwriting...

Fans of Golden Age science fiction (or is that "scientifiction"?) are no doubt thinking of the vibrowriter from David H. Keller's 1934 story The Lost Language:

There was a man there, Henry Jordan, who had gained international renown by his work with vibrations. He was the inventor of the vibrowriter, the new typewriter that could be talked to, and which transposed the spoken sound into typed words, a contrivance which made perfect spelling possible, provided the words were perfectly pronounced.

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