Techno-Telepathy & Silent Subvocal Speech-Recognition Robotics

HORIZON. Studies in Phenomenology 10 (1):232-257 (2021)
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Abstract
The primary focus of this project is the silent and subvocal speech-recognition interface unveiled in 2018 as an ambulatory device wearable on the neck that detects a myoelectrical signature by electrodes worn on the surface of the face, throat, and neck. These emerge from an alleged “intending to speak” by the wearer silently-saying-something-to-oneself. This inner voice is believed to occur while one reads in silence or mentally talks to oneself. The artifice does not require spoken sounds, opening the mouth, or any explicit or external movement of the lips. The essay then considers such subvocal “speech” as a mode of writing or saying and the interior of the mouth or oral cavity as its writing surface. It briefly revisits discussions of telepathy to recontextualize Heidegger’s warning against enframing language exclusively within calculative technics and physiology, which he suggests is detrimental to Mundarten (mouth-modes of regional dialects). It closes in reconsideration of Husserl’s phenomenology of language and meaning in Ideas as it might apply to subvocal speech-recognition interfaces. It suggests ways by which the electrophysiology that the device detects and deciphers (as an alleged intention of a presumed natural language unspoken vocally or aloud) might supplement Husserl’s insinuation of the Leiblichkeit of language through a self-stamping extraction of an extension of meaning.
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Archival date: 2021-06-19
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2021-06-19

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