I came across the other days over a release from Adobe’s new app, called VoCo, a voice editing over everything to anyone. Simply put, voice manipulation. I’m not sure it’s a revolutionary break through, as we have already seen what technology is capable of. If image manipulation has proven to be somehow useful to marketing tools, and this is what was mainly used for, voice over comes with great security and safety concerns, as it is not something you can see and discern.
Many companies and universities have long been waiting for such innovation to be released and honestly apart from the exercise of doing it, i’m actually curious to what they have had in mind. Adobe itself said it is still working on a model to monetize it and make use of it.
They are of course not the only one in the game. Google’s DeepMind division has shown its rival, called WaveNet earlier this year, in September. Its main purpose is to generate speech that mimics any human style intended to reduce the human machine interaction gap.
Yet, the human machine interaction is already an old story as chat bots and artificial assistants are already running in business all over the world from schools, talking to god, or pornographic content. They are probably different markets for data collection other than social media which despite its openness is still under a pressure of social image and manipulative content, being seen as a market of distribution and resell rather than accurate data collection tool, therefore when it comes to data mining, big companies are phishing for separate data pools on personality and more relevant interaction.
Siri is another project that is working on one to one data collection, using voice, tone of voice, interpretative meanings but so far has not reveled more of its intent on future development.
Another questionable projects are the apps like eter9 or replika which are tools for your cyberplace after death, when people are still able to talk and interact to you as accurate as possible using the machine even if you are 6 meters underground. Everything about you, collected is replicated and transformed into a cyber ghost, an ether mirror. More than creepy, it opens the door for a quite dark age of confusion and deception for any living user. Yet, for cyberspace, considering all the above apps and probably any other pending, opens the discussion of the ghost hack treats as no one will be able to secure the after death information, flow and interaction, and consequently the dangers that can occur on the mental and physical health of individuals and communities. The dangers are as subtle as air since every single decision or action can be influenced by things you cannot see, yet perceive.
Conclusions? not available. Solutions? Depends on how you see the problem. On how everyone sees the problem. I can only close with a quote from Harry Potter’s Mrs Granger’s wisdom… “Hearing voices is not a good sign, Harry. Not even in the wizards world”