Words With Friends, Release Me From Your Fiendish Grip

The author discusses her complicated relationship with the only smart phone app that has ever captured her imagination as well as her time.

I Used to Read. Really.

Are you a big Scrabble fan? Me,neither. Until about three weeks ago, I played roughly once per year with an SEO services professional whose brain and knowledge of arcane letter combinations is greater than most linguists. She regularly beat the pants off me, but since wine was involved I overlooked it.

Famous Last Words

On one recent occasion she suggested I try Words With Friends, the virtual Scrabble knockoff created by the enterprising folks at Zynga. I am convinced that the Zynga game creators must be aliens poised to take over the planet and steal our remaining natural resources, because how else could rational adults create games of such intense addictive traits so as to render the game-playing population helpless?

“Look for me,” she said. “I’ll play with you.”

After a week or two of not getting around to it, I found myself alone on my kitchen couch on Sunday morning at 7am with a cup of coffee, a small dog nestled in my lap and a soft rain falling outside. With little desire to move, I grabbed my phone and downloaded what must be the most insidious and habit-forming of online games. Three cups of coffee and a bagel later, I was still there. At three o’clock in the afternoon. In my pajamas.

And just like that, an addiction was born.

I’m That Nut With Her Face in Her Phone

The next time you go to the dry cleaner, the gas station or the grocery store, look for me. I’m the one with her face buried in her phone, because I Can’t. Stop. Playing. I even tried to promise myself that I would do one—just one—word per day. Well, one word per day, per game. If I weren’t playing 12 games, then I suppose that wouldn’t be a problem.




Shouting at the Computer

Imagine using your voice to find online articles on automotive parts. From across the room you say “Computer: find articles on CJ Pony Mustang parts, and the computer, hearing and understanding your voice, goes online and finds the articles you need. The idea sounds like something from Star Trek, but voice recognition technology seems poised to be the latest technology to make the jump from science fiction to fact.

Nuance Communication and Siri

Voice recognition software has existed, in one form or another, since the 1980s, but was never sophisticated enough for widespread use until Apple introduced Siri, a soft-spoken, slightly sultry virtual assistant for the iPhone 4S. For the first time in history, we could talk to a machine and receive a human-like response.

Nuance Communications provides Siri’s speech recognition engine, and plans to expand voice recognition to all areas of life. No losing the remote with speech recognition: you’ll just tell the television what you want to watch. Nuance plans a world where your computer, car, entertainment system, thermostat and even coffee pot don’t just understand and respond to your voice — they’ll also talk back.

The idea of your coffee pot responding in Hal 2000′s voice is a little disturbing (“I wouldn’t have a third cup if I were you Dave”), but today’s technology could make it happen. At present, voice recognition systems use almost exclusively female voices, but as the technology catches on, we can expect a wider range of voice options. Your alarm clock could have the deep, authoritative tone of Sam Jackson, while your fridge might sound like a southern belle.

The Rise of Talking Machines

If the idea of talking appliances gives you pause, you’re not alone. While it might be convenient to call for a Ford Mustang parts search from across the room, some people see a dark side to voice recognition systems (and no, it’s not the Great Robot Uprising, although you might want to consider being nice and polite when you talk to the fridge from now on).

Privacy advocates note that voice recognition stores your conversation, which the software uses to improve how well it understands your voice. This means every appliance you talk to stores your voice, leaving an audio “trail”that could compromise your privacy.

Perhaps more alarmingly, we don’t know fully understand the possible emotional ramifications of talking machines. We’re hard-wired biologically to make social connections by speaking with other humans. How attached could someone get to a coffee pot that responds with human speech (as a possible indication of future problems, that last sentence was almost written as “a coffee pot who responds with human speech)? People who own Roombas have reported feeling affection for the little robots, much like they would for a cat or dog.

Pregnancy test results

For any lovely women, thinking your lover may be conceive a baby is lack of racking to put it mildly. If your lady suspects she is pregnant you will also have several types of trials available to determine. The accuracy from the pregnancy test good results will vary with respect to the method utilised.

One such technique to buy your house pregnancy test, known as an HPT, coming from a local retail store. These can can be obtained at most suitable stores and even drug stores and are generally preferred by coziness because they are really accurate, very inexpensive, and can be accomplished in the privateness of your own property. These HPT foundation their effects on the position of a lifestyle, known as hCG (individual chorionic gonadotropin), in a woman’s urine. If the hormonal agent is present, than the woman is usually pregnant.

For these home maternity tests, you ought to wait a minimum of 14 days with the possible pregnancy date to obtain accurate motherhood test results. Virtually the test prematurely you may get an incorrect negative. Fortunately most trials that you have at home can come with two testers so that if you find that the first pregnant state test results were evolved in any way you may then take it as soon as to be sure. The sad thing is, even if you find negative conception test results then there’s a slight opportunity that you are even so pregnant, and additionally same is true of if you get a constructive result. Gather pregnancy assessments are only with regards to 97% accurate therefore, you should always consult your doctor with another test carried out be 100% sure.

There are many girls that decide to go into a doctor’s office to gain accurate conception test results. The home and property pregnancy trials can be greatly inaccurate in the event the user interferes up the ideal time or actually does some other tiny step incorrect, which will end up in false results. The most genuine way to see whether you’re pregnant is always to have a blood stream test done and your doctors. There are two main types of body tests. The first is the quantitative body test (or try out hCG test) and the moment is the qualitative hCG drops test. Both these tests count on the presence of that hCG hormone to look for the results, even so the beta hCG has got more exact pregnancy test consequences.

The quantitative hCG bloodstream test checks for even the smallest amount of hCG present in the actual blood and this accurately precautions how much hCG is found. This makes it far more accurate as opposed to the qualitative blood test additionally, the urine tests. All tests check for hCG hormonal to give you the latest yes or no in your pregnancy test gains but others beside the experiment with hCG blood test exactly check to see if its present and will not be like accurate.

Being pregnant is a living changing point for any lovely lady and its essential to know soon enough whether you are expectant mothers. Make sure to obtain accurate maternity test results by just either going to a doctor’s office and also following all the steps at a home giving birth test accurately.