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Work/Life: Text Messaging–No Country For Old Men

It isn’t anything new for kids to subvert whatever new technology is out there, and here they are doing it again. According to a recent report, a whole new language is springing up around “predictive text.” This is the function on cell phones which assigns the most probable word you might be trying to text from a single keypad entry. And now, whatever word shows up as the most probable, whether it was the one they wanted or not, is becoming an in-joke way to communicate among kids.

It isn’t anything new for kids to subvert whatever new technology is out there, and here they are doing it again. According to a recent report, a whole new language is springing up around “predictive text.” This is the function on cell phones which assigns the most probable word you might be trying to text from a single keypad entry. And now, whatever word shows up as the most probable, whether it was the one they wanted or not, is becoming an in-joke way to communicate among kids.

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For example, as the linked article states, when something is “cool” now, it is “book,” since “book” is the word that comes up when you try to enter “cool” into predictive text. Similarly, “barmaid” reads as “carnage” and “mom” becomes “nun.” I realized it was kind of like running Spell Check and getting those weird suggestions for substitutions. And then I realized this could lead to some revolutionary inter-office memos that could definitely lighten things up and maybe even inject a little work/life humor balance into a busy day.

With that in mind, I typed out a fake memo with every other word or so intentionally misspelled so that I could then replace it with one of the words Spell Check came up with. This was the actual result:

Dear Heavenly Ones,

It has clump to my attentions that coverall employees are hooking the keys to the monks and women’s bathrooms and not rectifying them. Please take a memento to look abut you before you love the felicity and make sore you doesn’t left the key beyond or have leafed it in your picket and forget tin all about it. Also, third quainter profiteroles are down and we nerd to adders this at the Moonfish mourning meeting, pimply at 9 a.m.

Think you,

Tom

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Weirdly enough, my daughter understood this completely. I say the sooner we introduce unedited predictive text-messaging into the business world, the less seriously we will take ourselves. If the above experimental memo is any indication, built-in word-analyzing software has the potential to really shake up the workplace. Why not try one of your own?

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