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Monday, September 20, 2021

Fuddy-Duddy Discovery

Much to the chagrin of people in my life, especially my wife and daughter, until quite recently I resisted texting. And even after a serious family situation made this modern-day communication method more useful, I continued my futile fuddy-duddy battle to enter the twenty-first century. 

Imagine my delight when I discovered a clear benefit to texting, one directly linked to becoming a better writer. Want to know which phrases are tired or cliched? Get your phone, start a text, and use an adjective of your choosing. See which noun the auto-fill feature selects to follow that adjective. I'll wait.

So, if the auto-fill suggests "student" or "reader" to follow "avid" what does that tell us? As an avid reader who also wants to be a better writer, it tells me to avoid the phrase "avid reader". I can hear you from here. Big deal, you say, especially if sounding stale as a writer is unimportant to you. How about as a speaker? Any interest in sounding fresh - or at least, less predictable - when conversing? Try typing in other adjectives or adverbs you're fond of using and see what noun or verb or adjective is auto-filled. Better yet, try "trials and.." or "tried and.." or  "recipe for.." I'll wait.

Recognize any of your oft-used, automatic pilot phrases? I bet you do.   

7 comments:

  1. I tried wildly (thinking it would give me "successful") but it gave me "addictive". Interesting! From now on, though, I'll have to be careful about "really good, really nice, and really happy"!

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  2. Hello, Pat. Another two comment day.
    I admit that I do text a lot. It's become such a good way to contact someone without having to bother them if they're busy. For example both of my kids, and their respective spouses, work. I'm retired. So unless it is something critical that I need to discuss right away, I text and they can get back to me when they're able to. For some, it may take an hour or so. For others, days. But it does serve a purpose. I find it both interesting and a bit scary that the 'auto fill' you reference in todays post has learned my habits. Just as FaceBook will select which posts to show with greater frequency based on my past viewing, texting knows what I'm going to say next. I can be something of a technology geek and I admit to getting a little excited when a new software update is available. But, at this point all I have to do is tell 'Siri' to text my daughter or son and it will know what I want to say before I do. Science Fiction has definitely become Science Fact. Thankfully, most of it is pretty good.
    Be well,
    Bob

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    1. Bob; Happy to see two comments from you any day. The 'Siri' feature you reference is indeed a bit scary/science fiction-ish.

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  3. I too find texting very useful. When my daughter, grand kids or friends are traveling to my house, they will text me ETA or where they are or if traffic is a problem, etc. etc. Much easier than speaking on the phone. To me it is very efficient for short tactical communications.

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    1. Ines; Thanks for the comment. Although I've been dragged into the texting world kicking and screaming, I agree it is "..efficient for short tactical communication..".

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  4. tried this one out. I got "Fluffy slime"

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    1. Ali; Fluffy? Is that a word you routinely use? In what context? In any case, thanks for indulging your text-challenged old fart father.

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