Caitlin Chan – Writing a Program Note


 


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Part of: Talking to Each Other: A Collective Sounding Project

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This piece depicts my complicated relationship to Microsoft Word’s dictate function, which shows the enabling and disabling features of AI technology. This function allows me to write documents orally, as opposed to typing. As someone who speaks as a medium to think, this function has been a blessing. Being able to switch between speaking and writing has been a substitute for the shifts in movement that were embedded in my writing before COVID-19. Prior to the pandemic, movement in my writing was created by relocating myself to different places such as a café or a library. The dictate function has replicated some of that movement, but these affordances come with hindrances of their own. The dictate function is often inaccurate, which is exasperated by the quality of my headphones. Additionally, words such as sex and domination are automatically blurred, which limits what topics can be written aloud. After the recording of the “final version” of the program note, I changed the piece to more directly reflect the miscommunication that occurs during dictation process by overlapping the dictate version of my “final” recording (as read by Microsoft’s automated voice) and my original reading.





Subtitles
This piece depicts my complicated relationship to Microsoft Word’s dictate function,

which shows the enabling and disabling features of AI technology.

This function allows me to write documents orally, as opposed to typing.

As someone who speaks as a medium to think, this function has been a blessing.

Additionally, being able to switch between speaking and writing has been a substitute for the shifts in movement

that were embedded in my writing before COVID-19.

Prior to the pandemic, movement in my writing was created by relocating myself

to different places such as a café or a library.

The dictate function has replicated some of that movement,

but these affordances come with hindrances of their own.

The dictate function is often inaccurate, which is exasperated by the quality of my headphones.

Additionally, words such as sex and domination are automatically blurred,

which limits what topics can be written aloud.

This piece mimics the process of creating this program note.

The process of speaking aloud, re-typing and then using the read over function to edit

are layered over one another to show the messiness that comes with using AI in this way.

The full transcript of all layers are attached.

Captions
[Two female voices layered on top of each other]

[One voice is a computer voice (center).
The other voice is human (bottom)]

[Typing begins]

[Typing continues]

[Typing becomes more aggressive]

[Fast typing]

[Fast aggressive typing with intermittent pauses]


Credits
[medium-high pitch voice]
This video was made in the context of a two-week workshop for Talking To Each Other, a multimedia project on the topics of access, disability, and collective sound making. The workshop was facilitated by Piper Curtis and Razan AlSalah. The Talking To Each Other project was directed by Simone Lucas with the Access in the Making Lab and The Feminist Media Studio. 
    

Participating Members