This isn’t a new thing, but it’s the first I’ve heard of it. One company is now offering celebrity voices as an add-on to your in-car navigation system. The first ones chosen were Mr. T, Burt Reynolds, and Dennis Hopper. They didn’t get a great review in this article, so perhaps the company didn’t do enough with them. I could think of some really cool uses for their voices, but, as “real life” tends to interfere with what would be cool, some people would get offended and want to sue, so they probably have to limit what can be done. Maybe they should offer some different rudeness settings, from “Bring It!” to “Please be gentle because I’m a wuss”. Then again, my idea of settings to be politically correct wouldn’t be politically correct. *sigh*
This second article explains why having your navigation system joke with you and use unusual accents is bad. This is obviously overreacting, as long as the celebrity voices are optional. People can use them if they can handle it. If it doesn’t work for them, use the standard boring voice. I tell ya, some people are just looking to get offended, even on others’ behalf. *sigh*
In the latter article on being offended, someone said:
Even though we all realize that a car’s navigation system is a computer, our brain still responds to anything speaking to us as if it were a person.
Really?!? Are you sure? I think that’s stupid. Because my wife’s vehicle has a navigation system in it, and I never confuse it with a person. Nor do I treat it as a person. Actually, I usually either ignore it or turn it all the way down, because I’m a man and don’t need directions! 🙂 But if it sounded like Mr. T, I would listen to it for the humor effect.
I don’t know who these people are that confuse a computer with a real person. If this actually happens, there shouldn’t even be verbal directions, because they might think someone is in the car with them, and so they might panic and run off the road. I know, that sounds silly, but so does their premise of confusing the voices. And if you’re going to account for the possibility of human stupidity, then there’s a LOT of scenarios to consider.