Monday, February 25, 2008

Arizona Highways

Hi, all! I'm back in the frigid Midwest from sunny Arizona. I plan to have a recap of my trip up here soon (at the moment, I'm still digging out from under the mound of work left for me last week), but I wanted to check in and let you all know I'm home.

I will say this though. I had my first experience with a GPS device on the trip. We used it to guide us from our hotel to an old "ghost town" about an hour away. Has anyone else used one of these yet? I really liked it but it did make me wonder...

Why did they used a woman's voice on the GPS to navigate? I assume they did lots of research to figure out that most people prefer a woman's voice but why do you think that is? Why do you think men prefer a woman's giving him directions?

Obviously, the voice isn't meant to imitate my wife. I say this because when we got off course, the voice simply calculated an alternate route and continued giving me directions, as opposed to saying, "I guess you're not going to listen to me" and then giving me the silent treatment for the rest of the trip. Also, I know it wasn't meant to mimic my wife because GPS-girl didn't seem to mind when I went more than 4 MPH over the speed limit.

My next thought was that maybe the voice is supposed to make us feel like our mother is giving us directions. However, I quickly realized this wasn't the case when the voice didn't pray loudly, "Jesus, Mary & St. Joseph!" when we were winding through the mountain roads along cliffs. I also knew it wasn't my mom when passed a road-side stands that sell yard ornaments and I wasn't instructed to "turn right into parking lot".

Nevertheless, I actually grew to like the woman's voice. She was very helpful. We talked a lot during the trip. Her name was Helen and she went to Texas A&M. It turns out that she used to be the voice on the Speak & Spell. She's come a long way.

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  1. Anonymous Says:

    If drinking and driving were legal, I'd definitely play the "watch your speed" drinking game. Every time Jill would say "watch your speed", I'd have to take a shot. We'd crash within 5 minutes.