If I Could Invent Something...

An Essay By Lucy Anne // 12/28/2012

I am still trying to comprehend that I am a Monthly Writer as of yesterday night!! This means so much...so, thank you.

And also, the picture is really working now! :))


When was the last time you met a person who loved to write, but could not because of a disability involving the hands? Well, it is quite a loss that this person cannot write–even though he yearns to—because the only current way to write is to use hands to write or type. It is also a shame that some of us, who do have two good hands, do not always make use of that blessing to write. Of course, some of us have reasons for not writing much. For instance, we may have tried the best we can to type but we cannot seem to master it. Maybe we do not have enough time to practice typing. Some of us may think that we should avoid typing articles into a word processor because it causes eye strain. Furthermore, others decide that typing is a waste of time and we can use our time for a more worthwhile activity. Besides, we say, writing already takes me enough time without the additional requirement of learning how to type!

All of the above reasons are true. In this generation of technology, besides putting together the words and sentences for the article we writers must use a keyboard along with a utility program for writing on a computer. When I type my articles, it usually takes a long time because I type slowly. After such a long time of typing, my eyes begin to hurt as if they are on fire and my wrists begin to feel as if they are about to fall off.

So one day, after typing an essay that was longer than usual, I had this idea: What if, instead of using my hands to type an article, I could use a machine to record my voice to type the article?

This machine would be called EW, the initials for "Easy Writer”, and it would be comprised of two parts.

The first part would be what I call EE, for "Easy Essays". EE would be a tiny rectangular machine approximately the size of your palm and include a small clasp behind it to fasten it onto the edge of the computer screen. This would be placed straight in front of you—first, so EE could operate properly and second, so EE could accurately distinguish the words you speak. Whatever accent you have as you speak into EE should not matter because EE would be designed to understand the pronunciation regardless of accent. To make the process quicker, Easy Essays would not type in your words letter by letter, but display entire words. As a result, the machine would always be typing one word behind you.

ED, which stands for "Easy Deletes", is the second part of the machine. As you may have guessed by its name, you would use ED to correct any mistakes that EE might make. But how would ED correct a mistake? That is a good question. ED would be connected to the computer and have a miniature version of the Word Document being shown on the computer; it would track of the words that EE already typed into the computer. Then if EE ever makes a mistake (which would be rare, I assure you), all you must do is touch the incorrect word on the touch screen and speak it again to EE and then, that particular word will be corrected. ED would be similar to the remote control that you use to operate a television. ED would not be clipped onto the computer. Instead, ED could be placed on your desk or be in your hand to make it more convenient to use.

“But why would you want to invent this?” you say. “I already type everything using the computer and I think typing on a keyboard is a convenience, not a hindrance. EW does not sound extra useful to me.”
To be honest, I usually write at least two drafts onto paper first and then finally, I type in my writing into Microsoft Word, editing and revising as I go. Therefore, EW probably would not be such a great convenience if one does not write all the drafts onto paper beforehand. But, EW still could be useful in many ways. Firstly, sometimes I don’t know how to start my essay so I say my thoughts out loud. But after I have said everything that I wanted to say, I forget what I said and how I said it! And if I had said everything to EW, everything would have been recorded and all I would need to do is edit my thoughts. Secondly, I want to invent this for people that have a disability involving the hands. This would let the people who have been helping them to translate their words onto paper and be able to complete other things because they do not have a problem of talking, but of typing.

If EW was invented for real, it would not take as long to write with EW because speaking is much faster than typing. It would give a writer that did not have good hands the opportunity to write with his voice. Also, people could spend more time completing more worthwhile undertakings. We would not stare at the screen for long periods of time and damage our eyes. In addition, people who have tried to type but could not master it, could use EW because EW requires no learning. But most of all, if EW was invented, Easy Writers would open doors for a future-less person to finally fulfill his dream, changing his life in ways that have been thought “impossible” for centuries.


What a great idea!

I personally can type well, so it would not be a great convenience to me. I would hardly use it. But that is a great idea for people who have a disability with the hands! You should look it up and see if it is already invented....I wouldn't be surprised if it already is, but if it isn't, see if you can get it patented or something like that. :)

And--CONGRATS for becoming a monthly writer!!

Critique: The first sentence was actually confusing for me; I had to read it over 2 times before I got it. Maybe this would be a better way:
Have you ever met a person who loved to write, but could not because of a disability involving the hands?

It sounds a little better, but you could play around with it.
I also thought you could make it a bit more organised; cut out a bit of the expalining, and so forth. Make it a bit shorter.
And the fact that you used 2nd and 1st person instead of 3rd person, it made the overall essay less formal than it would if written in 3rd person.

Anyway, that's my input. Congratulations again for becoming a monthly writer--how long did you become one after you sent in a application thing?

Btw, your picture isn't showing up, but mine is. And I can't change mine either, after several attempts. But other people's are showing up too.

Maddi | Sat, 12/29/2012

Goodbye? Oh no, please. Can’t we just go back to page one and start all over again?” – Winnie The Pooh

Thank you so much!

And we're on same time...AGAIN! :)

Thank you for your critique. So you don't think that this is organized? Hmm...well, others have been saying that it is more organized than they had expected...so who do I believe? :) Okay, no, but I appreciate your honesty! But could I ask why didn't you think this was organized?

The outline is basically: (1) Intro (2) What the invention is (3) Description of invention part 1 (4) Description of invention part 2 (5) Reader's objection (6) My response (7) Conclusion.

P.S. I see my picture. And I see yours. But I can't seem to change it. :)

Lucy Anne | Sat, 12/29/2012

"It is not the length of life, but the depth of life." Ralph Waldo Emerson

Nice job, and congratulations

Nice job, and congratulations on being a monthly! I felt like this was pretty well organized, but to the point of stiffness. Even though this piece appeared to be an academic essay rather than a personal essay, I needed more personality. I found myself reading in a Billy Mays Infomercial voice whereas I would rather hear yours, if that makes any sense at all. I want to know who or what gave you the inspiration to invent such a hypothetical machine.
Also, at one point, you said this line: "Then if EE ever makes a mistake (which would be rare, I assure you)," I want to know how you can assure me that it won't make many mistakes if you haven't invented it. How can you guarantee the quality of the speakers and software that is translating your words?
Those are my only pointers, besides a couple of small grammatical issues. :) good job! Also, please tell me if I'm being harsh. I just wanted to give some constructive criticism!

Erin | Tue, 01/01/2013

"You were not meant to fit into a shallow box built by someone else." -J. Raymond


Thank you!

I agree with what you say. Do you mean you rather hear my style of writing, rather than a stiff one? Are there any suggestions that you have to correct the problems (this one that I just referred to and others) that you see? And you are not, in any ways harsh. Thank you so much for the constructive criticism!!

Lucy Anne | Tue, 01/01/2013

"It is not the length of life, but the depth of life." Ralph Waldo Emerson

Hi, I've been meaning to

Hi, I've been meaning to reply to your comment! Sorry it took me so long. I would definitely rather hear your voice than such a formal one.
The only suggestion I can really give you to improve the quality of your voice (as it relates to essays as well as works of fiction) is to relax. I can tell that you are extremely structured and goal oriented (which is amazing-I'm the complete opposite. I could probably learn a lot from that). However, most of the time, the best way to create a good, interesting narrative is to not worry about how many chapters you need to finish, what word count you need, or even about the actual structure of your writing. All of those are things that you can go back and flesh out. Once you've developed a strong voice, you can start considering goals and things of that nature. Think about how your writing could affect others as well as yourself.
I highly recommend free writing exercises, such as writing what is on your mind at the moment, without caring about if it makes sense. I've had some short stories come from that.
A really good writing book that you might like is Writing Magic by Gail Carson Levine. Her books are all very diverse and original, and this book has helped me tremendously over the years!
I hope that was actually helpful and not too obscure. :) let me know if you have questions about what I said!

Erin | Wed, 01/09/2013

"You were not meant to fit into a shallow box built by someone else." -J. Raymond


I understand what you say. Recently, I have found that it was easier for me to write about what I really wanted to write; like what you said.

This was not one of my favorite essays. I even had to re-write this. I was really wanting to get this really organized because people have been saying that I am not organizing my thoughts enough. I learned that the hard way -- I received a B+ in a essay that was important to me. But that was in the summer writing workshop I attended, and I've learned a lot and I am incorporating the lessons I've learned whenever I write (hopefully!).

Anyways, I agree with what you said, and I'll take a look at the book! Thank you, Erin! -- Megan

Lucy Anne | Wed, 01/09/2013

"It is not the length of life, but the depth of life." Ralph Waldo Emerson

I've had this idea before

I've had this idea before (because I have a fear of carpal tunnel syndrome, which most typists get). The real problem would be making it appear on the page as I'd want it to be read. With proper punctuation, italics, chapter headings. You know? For example, my dad has an app on his phone that allows him to dictate text messages, but even if it hears all the words correctly (and it doesn't - once it sent the word "koala" instead of "OK"), it doesn't put in apostrophes or periods.

Anna | Tue, 03/26/2013

I have hated the words and I have loved them, and I hope I have made them right. --The Book Thief

Yes, I know. That's why a

Yes, I know. That's why a perfect machine would be so nice.

I believe my dad had carpel tunnel once. He's a computer programmer/ software developer, so. :)

Lucy Anne | Wed, 03/27/2013

"It is not the length of life, but the depth of life." Ralph Waldo Emerson


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