Off The Path

Driving Efficiently or Dangerously Sidetracked?

I am writing today’s blog while driving on the 405 freeway from Los Angeles during the height of traffic. No, I am not typing while I am driving. I’m actually using an Apple application called Dragon Dictation.

In order to evaluate the functionality of this free app which I downloaded from Apple, I am speaking into a microphone while both hands are on the steering wheel.

I often see other drivers holding their smart phone and checking messages and god for bid typing while they are driving on this freeway. In order to recommend or not recommend the Dragon dictation free application, I wanted to be able to deliver this entire post by speaking into a microphone while focusing on my driving.

In order to successfully complete this blog post without typing a single word, voice recognition technology for dictation must be clearly effective to understand every word I am saying as I’m changing lanes, changing lanes and breaking. I will have to double check this post after I arrive home and correct any errors the computer has made. However, what I would like to see as I’m speaking into this microphone is how accurate the program is in putting my verbal thoughts in print in order to deliver the content that I want to convey.

If this verbal dictation is successful then I may continue to voice my blogs that are transferred into the written word which I can then e-mail myself in order to post future blogs. As someone who spends a lot of time on the freeway in Southern California, this would be a terrific way to communicate my thoughts.

While driving, I often look for ways to be more effective for work or other projects like this blog post. However this production cannot come at the cost of being unsafe. If I’m able to speak into a microphone while paying full attention to the road, an effective dictation tool could help me verbalized my thoughts.

Often, I will listen to a national television broadcast of the evening news through my smartphone as I driving home. while I cannot visually see what is happening on the screen I can still absorb the days events while being a road warrior.

The question that I ask however, is this: How distracting is talking to yourself like this? Is it as distracting as someone who smokes while driving?
My driving pace has now slowed to 20 mph. I’m now changing lanes while both hands are still on the steering wheel.

One of the drawbacks of this free program is that either the bumping of the road or the sensitive nature of the application has caused the recording to stop several times. I had to push a button to restart the recording process to finish this post.

That said, this is certainly an interesting way to voice your thoughts over the internet.

Dragon successfully transferred what i said into the written word 90+% of the time with no spelling mistakes.

There is just no short cut, yet, for editing down the babble into something that makes more sense.

I think this app is certainly worth the free download.