For those of us who may, at one time, have taken the kitschy Abba song, ‘Ring, ring, why don’t you give me a call?’ to heart, comes frightening news from an Israeli company. It has developed a computer programme that can not only predict the caller’s emotional state but also diagnose a host of medical conditions.
This is alarming to many of us malingerers. Imagine ringing your boss one fine morn and telling him you have had an asthmatic attack and will have to stay in bed. The tyrannical so and so will discern from your voice that you’re planning a day at the spa. The routine phone call to the spouse with the usual, ‘honey, have got caught up at work’ won’t stand you in good stead or health when he or she discerns that you’re whooping it up at the club with your buddies or, worse still, having a bit of fun on the side with some hunk/siren. Is nothing sacrosanct or private anymore? Now when you call an important personage only to be told he is in the bath, you could surprise the phone-answering lackey with a wealth of knowledge on the whereabouts of his boss. That should scare the pants of some of our perennially bathing netas.
The complications are endless. Now if you decide to tell some pesky caller, ‘how nice to hear from you again’ when you mean, ‘why don’t you migrate to the Galapagos Islands and never return’, you could lose a lot of friends. But those who think that this technology, from the tight-lipped Israelis of all people, is a boon, do give us a call.