Thursday, April 13, 2006

Breaking News

Thank heaven for technology and the NHS! We're on Easter break now for two weeks, time to relax and catch up on chores. On Tuesday, I installed ViaVoice on my PowerBook. It took most of the afternoon to model my voice by reading several texts into a microphone so that the software could recognize my speech. It also allows me to dictate into other writing programs, including this post.

I discovered that I could use this software best to transcribe text, which I have already written out by hand. It's difficult to compose aloud fluently, so I prefer to handwrite to keep up with the flow. The software picks up to the ambient noise in the room so I get odd combinations of phrases and words, very distracting. I find I need to make a lot of corrections. Little did I know how useful it would be.

Early Wednesday evening, I foolishly stood on a chair to reach a book on a high shelf. The chair tilted and I fell heavily on my left wrist. We spent from 8:00PM to 1:00AM in the emergency room of the local hospital. There were no questions about insurance although I do have private medical insurance if I need it. The consultation and the X-rays were free. When we went back to the fracture clinic again this morning, I learned that I would spend the next six weeks in a cast. Most people do this in their childhood, but this is the first time I've broken any bones in all my 57 years. Now how did I know I would need ViaVoice in this week? Scary, isn’t it? Life is still full of surprises!