How Sci-Fi Predicted Voice Tech

How Sci-Fi Predicted Voice Tech

2016 seems to be full of exciting new voice tech. There are a whole variety of personal voice assistants like Siri and Cortana. Smart Homes have gotten serious with incredible looking devices like Google Home and the Amazon Echo (both of which are voice controlled) and cars have gotten smarter to the point where ambient temperature, music and even navigation can be voice controlled (thanks to Dragon Drive, Google Now and more). It seems like an incredible new leap in voice tech is happening and it has huge implications for the way we do pretty much everything. But these amazing technologies didn’t come out of the blue; in fact, there are a whole bunch of sci-fi stories, books and films that predicted pretty much every voice trend we are witnessing.   Smart homes In one of the greatest sci-fi novels…
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Voice tools are changing online teaching

Voice tools are changing online teaching

The e-learning ecosystem is one that is continuing to grow and evolve. In 2015, the industry as a whole was worth over $100 billion and it is projected to reach close to $450 billion dollars by 2020. E-learning is a very broad term but essentially refers to any type of learning that contains or uses electronic technologies. This blog will explore some of the advantages and tools of e-learning in 2016. Source: http://blogs.articulate.com/rapid-elearning/get-started-e-learning-2/  Cheaply scaling education There are an increasing number of educational institutions opting to offer e-learning resources or courses in addition to their traditional courses or degrees. These can be complementary courses or stand-alone lectures that appeal to a different audience than the day-to-day students who learn in person and in a classroom. For institutions, there are a clear array of advantages in expanding learning offerings digitally. On…
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SEO is evolving

SEO is evolving

What is SEO? SEO refers to search engine optimization and covers all the technical and creative elements involved in improving site rankings and driving traffic to your website. This includes a lot of different things, from generating consistently great content, to the ways in which you structure your website and the links you include in it. Over the years, SEO has been evolving in more sophisticated and interesting directions, and today, the trends of voice content and voice searches are set to further change the world of SEO. The evolution of SEO There have been tons of changes in the world of SEO. Once, SEO was all about cramming in the correct keywords into a web page or blog. If you were an air-conditioning salesperson than you can bet the word air-conditioning would have featured roughly one thousand times in…
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Digital disruption is changing everything

Digital disruption is changing everything

What is disruptive innovation? Disruptive innovation is a term coined by Clayton Christensen back in 1995 that describes the way a new technology enters, disrupts and fundamentally changes a market. The concept has gained traction in recent years and describes common market patterns. As incumbents in various arenas focus on their core market and on creating and refining ever better technologies (and ones that their customers may not in fact need), they leave the market open to other newer companies that are able to swoop in and disrupt the market with business models that appeal to a different target market, include a different technology or have lower margins.  Source: http://drdavidricketts.com/keynotes/ How SodaStream transformed soda There are countless examples of fledgling companies, innovators and entrepreneurs who have swooped in and fundamentally changed existing markets. One great example is SodaStream who changed…
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Hear what your readers have to say about Trump

Hear what your readers have to say about Trump

It’s all over, but things are just beginning As the dust settles in the US, one thing is certain: the elections are finally over. It’s been a long two years and a whole lot of campaigning. But while things are all over on one level, they are really only just beginning. President Trump still has a way to go before he officially takes office on January 20th. But apart from all the official briefings and meetings, now is a time when there are still a lot of unknowns about the next president. Trump is at the very very beginning of making White House appointments. All we know so far is that Trump named GOP chief Reince Priebus as his chief of staff and tapped right-wing Breitbart news executive Stephen Bannon as chief strategist and senior counselor. And there have been…
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Voice is changing the way we drive

Voice is changing the way we drive

The first voice activated car driver was Dr. Foster (played by David Hasselhoff in Knight Rider back in the 1980s). The voice activation system in question was the Pontiac Trans Am, the Knight Industries Two Thousand (otherwise known as KITT), and was a fully-fledged AI that functioned as Dr. Foster’s partner in solving a crime. Fast forward to 2016, where the legendary Knight Rider is about to get an exciting reboot and where voice-activated driving is no longer just something out of a TV show or an overly active imagination. And ok, voice-activated driving assistance may not quite be ready to reach full sentience and help us stop crime, but there are a whole bunch of smart voice-activated systems out there that are helping us drive better. Source: screenrant.com For starters, there is a wide range of navigation apps on…
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The evolution of voice-overs

The evolution of voice-overs

It has been 110 years since the very first voice over was recorded by Reginald Fessendon, the first ever voice heard on radio. Over 20 years later, Looney Toons came to life along with Mickey Mouse and many other iconic cartoon characters. Walt Disney had the honor of introducing the first ever cartoon voice in 1928. And in the 30s the voice over industry began to expand rapidly with larger and larger numbers of animated films being produced. This led to the formation of actor’s guilds and the professionalization of the industry. In the 1940s the first legal TV ad was run. In the beginning, voice-overs were anonymous “in-between” jobs and remained very much behind the scenes. This remained the case for a long time, but in recent decades voice-overs have increased in popularity with the release of major cartoon…
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Digital goes hands-free with voice

Digital goes hands-free with voice

While the major operating systems of Android and iOS have had varying levels of voice command for quite some time, many apps have lagged behind with only written and visual inputs and outputs. But little by little all of that seems set to change as an increasing number of apps go hands-free. Last month, Google Maps finally launched its long overdue voice feature. This is especially helpful for drivers who can now find gas stations or change their routes while they are driving without having to pull over to type, or even worse, type and drive. And according to research, you are 23 times more likely to have an accident while texting, and texting while driving accounts for over 1,600,000 accidents per year in the US alone. Hopefully, the increasing move towards hands-free voice technology will help to reduce these…
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Video Game Voices

Video Game Voices

Video games were once the realm of Pacman and Space Invaders, with various blobs moving across screens accompanied by a symphony of bleeps (don’t get me wrong, those games are still amazing). But as the technologies evolved to allow for more complex and immersive video game experiences, the characters and sounds of video games have evolved as well. The current format is like a complex and interactive film, and in many ways, the actors are as important as they would be in a film or TV show. Yet, for the most part, video game actors remain anonymous, hidden behind various animated characters. Source: http://ai.berkeley.edu/project_overview.html  Voice acting is a very different gig to regular on-screen acting, or to acting at the theater. For one thing, there is no set script but rather a series of optional and interactive choices. They characters…
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Make your readers the center of the political debate

Make your readers the center of the political debate

The longest election ever? From start to finish, the US presidential campaign lasts nearly two whole years (going from initial committees to presidential inauguration) and costs millions if not billions of dollars. According to estimates, Hillary’s campaign may be as costly as 2 billion dollars, while Trump has reportedly pledged to spend 2 million dollars per week. Overall, this may be the most expensive election to date with experts predicting a total cost of up to 5 billion dollars. And unlike other countries, there is no legislation regarding the length of official campaigns, which makes America’s presidential campaign one of the world’s absolute longest campaigns ever. But as we near the end of October, November 8th no longer seems so far away. And if you’ve been blogging about this election, then it’s been quite a marathon, but we are now…
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