How To Write a Toast

Did you ever get asked to ‘give some brief remarks’ at a conference? Ever been asked to give a wedding toast? It often feels like you have just enough time to get really nervous–but not really time to prepare. That is the motivation for ‘Slam’.

Slam helps you organize your thoughts by speaking them, then seeing them transcribed on your phone’s screen, where you can group or reorder them, and then use your mobile as a review aid, or teleprompter (if you need it) before or during your remarks.

While the app was under development, the Google APIs for voice recognition were not that accurate, so a special feature was built in to allow you to respeak parts that were improperly transcribed. The app detects that you’re saying it again, a second time, looks at the recognized strings from each iteration, and then figures out the most likely intersection for the remaining (unrecognized) interval.

This went on Google Play for several months, but it wasn’t very stable (the Google voice recognition API was in beta at the time), and I eventually took it down to avoid accumulating too many bad reviews. I got to be able to use it pretty well, though, and used it at a couple of weddings.

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