Mar 31, 2008

My Favorite New Gadget

I'm on the road visiting job sites a lot, which can make keeping a schedule challenging and keeping track of my notes downright maddening. But I've recently begun using a terrific service called, which lets me phone in and leave voice messages for myself or anyone in my Jott network — messages that then are transcribed and emailed, or posted here on my blog or another service like Twitter, or sent as a text message to my phone.

It's great for quick notes (such as a plant combination I want to remember), or timed reminders (for instance, when I set up a client meeting) to be sent at a specific date and time. What makes the service so remarkable, though, is its accuracy. Click on this image to see a transcript Jott emailed me: with absolutely no "training" to my voice patterns or cadence, Jott got this note exactly right — right down to the bullet points and question mark:

And while it isn't always perfect — remember, a lot of my job involves weird, Latin-based plant names — I've gotta give Jott props for trying. Here's another emailed transcript:

First, I'm amazed it got — and capitalized — "Hydrangea." And really: can I expect Jott to know Carpenteria, chartreuse, and variegated? Its attempts are actually kind of sweet. And at least it has the decency to tell me, "Dude, I'm just not sure on this one."

The only other thing I'm wishing for right now is the ability to integrate my camera-phone with Jott messages; perfect for when I'm at the nursery, say, and see a specimen that I want to both take a picture of and add my idea for using it. But that's OK... I can wait a little longer for that utopia.


Amanda said...

Isn't Jott great! I recently started using the service also and have found it so helpful. No more pens and paper and losing notes. One of the best things I've come across in a while and it's free!

John said...

Amanda: Shh! Don't tell Jott they forgot to charge us for the service! I'm sure if I had to pay what it's worth, I couldn't afford it.