Trying to get the lyrics right…

Trying to Figure Out The Words to a Song?

Don’t you hate it when you listen to a song for a number of times,  but still having a hard time figuring out the lyrics, and asking yourself if it’s an alien language that you need to decipher? Or, you know what is even worse? When someone is getting the lyrics wrong and they don’t believe you when you try to correct them. Maybe there could be an app for that?

That would be great. But I have bad news. There was a study comparing how well two professional transcriptionists would compete against, the top of the line in voice transcription computer, the IBM Watson. Also known as “the smartest machine on Earth.” Their mission; accurately record four songs that were from country Taylor Swift singing “I Knew You Were Trouble,” Rock with Van Halen jamming “Runnin With the Devil,” a classic Elton John’s “Tiny Dancer,” and back to country with Brad Paisley’s “Ticks.”

The results? The computers got routed. The humans registered a perfect score with no missing words and no errors to the robot’s whopping 33 errors and 29 missing words. The machine had a tough time in the Rock genre more so than other missing 15 words and made 9 errors trying to figure out what Van Halen was saying. Looks like trying to figure out what musicians are singing is one job that is going to have to be left to us humans. Even though we do make mistakes sometimes.

Speaking of which, that is how the study came into being in the first place. The term “mondegreens” are funny misunderstandings of a song’s lyrics. Some people wanted to see what kind of “mondegreens” computers would create for us. Unfortunately, unlike your aunt that only changes a few key words, computers make so many mistakes, there is no context for humor. So the robots are not even funny when they mess up.

Graphic for Julie's paid post


2 Responses to “Trying to get the lyrics right…”

  • When my youngest was about 3 we were on a short road trip and, of course, listening to the radio. Benny and the Jets came on and I started listening very intently to what Greg was singing. When we ‘got it’ we were cracking up and it is now family legend, whether Greg likes it or not.
    His version…”papapapanties on my head”

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