Um Detector

What the hell has happened to our communication skills?

Is The Californians a parody, or more like, uh, you know, a documentary?

How big is this problem? It’s an epidemic! The origins may have started in Southern California in the 1980s. Since then, Valley Girl syndrome has spread like wildfire, infecting most English-speaking humans on the planet. Now even the most powerful person on Earth needs help!

Excerpt from Interview of President Obama on New Day, August 2013

Everyday people may not have much hanging on every word, but, even our political leaders? Is this acceptable?

In fact, many of our politicians talk like this normally! Here is another example from Caroline Kennedy, daughter of John F. Kennedy and currently the United States’ ambassador to Japan. She’s, um, you know, very articulate!

Caroline Kennedy interview with NYTimes, 2008-12. "You Know" is used 142 times in 20 minutes.

Stop the Madness!

Save the next generation and future presidents of the world from a lifetime of inarticulateness and embarrassment by using our latest invention, the Um Detector.

Instead of detecting photons or gamma rays, our mad scientists focused their energies on detecting a more down-to-earth particle: the “Um”. Using speech detection engines trained on thousands of hours of conversations from Californians under the age of 20, the Um Detector auto-detects instances of “um”, “uh”, “like”, and “you know” with high accuracy, in near real-time for the world to see. Diction is improved through reinforcement learning: it sends an electrical shock to the neck of the speaker whenever filler words are stated.

The Um Detector’s hardware is built from a standard grade electric dog collar retrofitted with a STM32 board.The STM32 board controls recording of audio, sending of audio to the APIs of our servers hosting the speech classifiers, receiving the returned classifications, and controlling the dog collar accordingly. Our web software tracks statistics about filler words. Set goals for reducing your Um frequency, and the Um Detector will set voltages to help you reach them accordingly!

For faster learning, Um Detectors can be networked together, as every Um Detector has its own IP address. Family and friends that are significant to the speaker can also be outfitted with Um Detectors, to create a collaborative effect in which the whole gang can feel the same way together whenever nonsense is uttered.

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Buy your Um Detector today!