This is Epth Nation

Epth is a state of mind, not a place. Reading this will give you a virtual drivers license in that state, but you'll still need to be 21 to purchase alcohol. And you can't get any there anyway, so stop asking.

Thursday, June 01, 2006

If No Humans are Interested, is it Really "Human Interest"?

Last night as I watched Channel 8's uptight-looking John McCaa fly solo on the 10 o'clock news, I wondered how it had come to this: The Mona Lisa's lips were moving, and an Italian woman's voice was coming out. It seems a scientist used her hand and head size to determine her height, then used that data to come up with a voice that was "90% accurate." I then wondered if a painting of Mike Tyson in this scientist's hands would sound like, you know, Mike Tyson. I wondered if you could really get a voice pattern right 90% of the time just by looking at a picture of somebody. I wondered if you could tell a person's height just by the size of their hands and head. I wondered if this scientist was just playing a joke on all local news stations everywhere.

All my wondering was in vain, because none of these questions were answered. Was I just supposed to accept this as her voice and move on as if nothing had happened? Also, what exactly is the scientific purpose of doing something like making the Mona Lisa talk? It's not like we can go back in time and see if we're right. So (and this is a question I seem to be asking 20 times per half-hour newscast) why is this news? It must be ratings-driven, but who really wants to see this? Is it supposed to get ratings by making us mock them? I don't get it.

And it's not just what they report, but how they report it. They don't get into any depth on any story, because they don't want to bore the audience with actual reporting. They didn't care if they could answer the question of "did Mona Lisa really sound like that?" -- they just wanted to show the Mona Lisa's computer-generated mouth moving. Whether or not it's news didn't even come into the discussion, probably. If someone did a dubious study on the farting habits of babies, they would show babies farting and ask no questions. That's apparently how news works these days.

I'm now declaring a moratorium on pictures of my head and hands, so Dr. Frankenmouth can't make me say things from beyond the grave with what he's 90% sure is my voice. Oh, and the Mona Lisa? Look up "not that great buddy" in the dictionary and you'll see a (now talking) picture of it. Give me The Rock over her anyday.


Post a Comment

<< Home