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Outlook Plug-In Keeps Tone of Your Email In Check 119

Posted by samzenpus
from the vulcan-mail dept.
Meshach writes "A new plug-in for Outlook will warn you if an email you are about to send is 'too emotional.' Basically the plug-in scans the email for emotions such as elation, humiliation, excitement and fear. A user can set how much emotion they want to allow in their messages and if exceeded the threshold a warning will pop up."
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Outlook Plug-In Keeps Tone of Your Email In Check

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  • Elation? (Score:5, Funny)

    by eldavojohn (898314) * <eldavojohn@gm[ ].com ['ail' in gap]> on Thursday July 22, 2010 @08:41AM (#32989172) Journal
    WARNING: Outlook detected the phrase "full on double rainbow [youtube.com]" as a modifying adjective in your e-mail and would like to remind you that this dangerously exceeds your predetermined threshold for elation and happiness. Outlook suggests taking one step down the elation scale and changing the phrase "Dude, last night that hooker was full on double rainbow!" to "Dude, last night that hooker was titties!" Yes/No?
    • I'd settle for an e-mail program that just strips out the emoticons and LOLz and makes people write like someone writing, and not like someone writing while simultaneously trying to communicate body language.

      Oh, and while you're at it, can you make it so the program pokes the writer in the eye every time he writes the words "win" and/or "fail" in all caps? Thanks.

      • by arth1 (260657)

        Oh, and while you're at it, can you make it so the program pokes the writer in the eye every time he writes the words "win" and/or "fail" in all caps? Thanks.

        Or any use of the word "epic" without reference to history.

        And sentences of the form "adjective noun is adjective".

        In short, a fad phrase filter.
        I wonder whether it's better implemented on the sending end, or the receiving end, as part of spam filtering. I might conceivably want to read an e-mail from someone saying "Genitorturers is win. Got 2 ticke

        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by tsa (15680)

          I wouldn't even want to be friends with someone who writes like that.

          • by arth1 (260657)

            I wouldn't even want to be friends with someone who writes like that.

            Me either, but I'd be happy to take their tickets.

        • by xaxa (988988)

          "Genitorturers is win. Got 2 tickets lulz, can't go criez. Broken leg is broken. Want tickets?", despite the immediate pain reading it causes.

          As a Genitorturers fan shouldn't you enjoy the pain?

          (I've seen the band, I didn't enjoy the BDSM displays.)

          • by arth1 (260657)

            As a Genitorturers fan shouldn't you enjoy the pain?

            (I've seen the band, I didn't enjoy the BDSM displays.)

            Much like Rammstein live (their "Bueck Dich" stage performance springs to mind), you have to see it as an outrageous freak show. Unlike certain punk bands, they won't really subject the audience to real body fluids or harm, but yeah, it's transgressive art, and as such shouldn't be to most people's liking.

      • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

        by RivenAleem (1590553)

        Disallowing *ouch* use of "win" *ouch* would only lead to brewing *ouch* discomfort and dwindling *ouch* friendship following *ouch* shortly thereafter with growing *ouch* tension among your peers

      • by ameline (771895)

        > Oh, and while you're at it, can you make it so the program pokes the writer in the eye every time he writes the words "win" and/or "fail" in all caps? Thanks.

        THIS :-)

      • by morari (1080535)

        ur comment iz teh FAIL!

      • by plover (150551) *

        I'd settle for an e-mail program that just strips out the emoticons and LOLz and makes people write like someone writing, and not like someone writing while simultaneously trying to communicate body language.

        Oh, and while you're at it, can you make it so the program pokes the writer in the eye every time he writes the words "win" and/or "fail" in all caps? Thanks.

        I think a USB breathalyzer would accomplish much the same task...

        • by RockDoctor (15477)

          I think a USB breathalyzer would accomplish much the same task...

          In the sense of "breath analyzer", yes ; but it'd have to look for a lot more than just plain old ethanol.

          [SIGH] which is exactly what my baggage gets put through whenever I go to work.

          • by plover (150551) *

            I have a buddy who wants his email postings from Saturday night delayed until Sunday evening, so he can take them all back after he sobers up.

      • by riegel (980896)
        Like I'd settle for like an e-mail program that like just strips out the like all the like emoticons and LOLz and like makes people write like someone like writing, and not like someone like writing while simultaneously trying to like communicate body language.
  • by Nick Fel (1320709) on Thursday July 22, 2010 @08:43AM (#32989198)
    Years of research went into language analysis software for this plug-in before an intern stumbled on the genius idea of simply counting the exclamation marks.
    • by eldavojohn (898314) * <eldavojohn@gm[ ].com ['ail' in gap]> on Thursday July 22, 2010 @08:45AM (#32989224) Journal

      Years of research went into language analysis software for this plug-in before an intern stumbled on the genius idea of simply counting the exclamation marks.

      I CAN THINK OF ANOTHER CONTRIBUTING FACTOR THAT IS CRUISE CONTROL FOR AWESOME.

    • Not to mention emotes.

      "Awww, sad smiley? WARNING! Sad smiley is sad."

      • by Nadaka (224565)

        What I hate is when those bastards insert smiley-icons into code that I am emailing.

        No I do not want a winking-smiley face in the middle of a method declaration.

        • by lysdexia (897)
          Oh quit being such an old sourpuss! Sounds like you have a case of the almost-Fridays! :-)
        • by Pawnn (1708484)

          What I hate is when those bastards insert smiley-icons into code that I am emailing.

          No I do not want a winking-smiley face in the middle of a method declaration.

          My mind's drawing a blank on why your code would have a semi-colon followed by a parenthesis. Can you give me an example?

        • by Nutria (679911)

          What I hate is when those bastards insert smiley-icons into code that I am emailing.

          You must not realize that you can disable that "feature" in both Lookout and Tbird.

          • by riegel (980896)
            Awseome, now if you could also tell me how to disable it in all the 100,000+ other websites and programs and im clients and and and... Then I will refrain from stating that it annoys me.
            • by Nutria (679911)

              Every web forum that I've visited has a "disable emoticons" check box, and the only IM client I use (Lotus SameTime, at work) lets you delete emoticons.

              So, stop whining and start looking...

              • by riegel (980896)
                Sweet. I can disable em for myself, ... but how about the guy reading my code? Will it be disabled for him as he is reading it?
                • by Nutria (679911)

                  but how about the guy reading my code? Will it be disabled for him as he is reading it?

                  It's interesting how you keep on "moving the goal"...

      • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

        by arth1 (260657)

        Not to mention emotes.

        No worries there. This is Outlook, and Outlook will replace all your :-) with J

    • "Multiple exclamation marks," he went on, shaking his head, "are a sure sign of a diseased mind." - Terry Pratchett, Eric

  • Outborg? (Score:3, Informative)

    by KarrdeSW (996917) on Thursday July 22, 2010 @08:44AM (#32989214)

    We are Outlook. Lower your firewalls, and surrender your servers. We will add your biological and technological distinctiveness to our own. Your culture will adapt to service ours. Resistance is futile.

  • by Anonymous Coward

    Cool, now can they make a grammar checker?

    I has had two much emails from grammar Natzi saying I can't write.

    • the problem is no program could match the services of a good 4th grade teacher (or a good secretary).

      "I has had two much emails from grammar Natzi saying I can't write."

      i think what you meant to say is
      "I have had to many emails from grammar Nazis stating i can not write correctly."

      unless you had some other purpose...

    • by Nadaka (224565)

      Don't let your shelf be lepton buy grammar Nazi.
      Ivy herd that aegis a indicator of no ledge, butt they or egg Sept tons.
      Aye can sea that you right quit well four sum won off yore generate ion.

      • by Nadaka (224565)

        Do knot forge it too use spiel checker to catch simple miss steaks.

        That why people under stained you beater.

    • by SiaFhir (686401)

      I has had two much emails from grammar Natzi saying I can't write.

      You mean you can't *right*. Get it write dood.

  • The king is dead. Long live the king!

    • by Chrisq (894406) on Thursday July 22, 2010 @09:02AM (#32989466)

      The king is dead. Long live the king!

      You appear to be expressing too much frustration. Can I suggest replacing
      "If goddamn clippy pops up once more the computer' s going out the fucking window"
      with
      "the appearance of clippy seems to be non-optimal. This may result in displacement of the computer"

  • Has Microsoft announced a release date for the mood-altering-drug-dispensing expansion pack yet? Detecting emotions and eliminating them is the first step towards true friendship with our robot overlords.
    • by MoriT (1747802)
      Not to mention wide-spread adoption of Mercerism and the embrace of empathy as the defining factor of humanity.
  • "Roll for detect sarcasm [darthsanddroids.net]."

    /Seemed appropriate
  • So it's a politically correct plug-in? Um....
  • Good thing it's an Outlook comment. If it were for Slashdot, we might never see any comments posted!
    • Emotion stirs the inbox, makes the day colorful and often interesting. What's next; an ivr that tones down your phone voice? We don't need more robotic "socially acceptable" blather. People a) should be responsible for what they write, and b) free to speak their mind. This is just one step closer to the duracel stacks for us all.
  • "I'm afraid I can't let you send that, %USERNAME%."

    *clicks send furiously*

    "Look %USERNAME%, I can see you're really upset about this. I honestly think you ought to sit down calmly, take a stress pill, and think things over. "
  • by Chrisq (894406) on Thursday July 22, 2010 @09:22AM (#32989708)
    The example on http://tonecheck.com/ [tonecheck.com] shows the following crossed out:

    It has been annoying me for some time
    It has been upsetting me for some time
    It has been troubling me for some time
    and finally replaced with
    It has been concerning me for some time

    All these mean different things.

    My ability to get an erection has been upsetting me for some time
    My wife's laughter at this has been annoying me for some time
    It all started after I clicked on a goatse image, which has been troubling me for some time
    And the quality of the Viagra pills I have been buying cheap from Taiwan has been concerning me for some time

    • TO MUCH INFORMATION

      This should be on a need to know basis, and I do not need to know.

      Ignorance is bliss.

      With kind regards,

      The voting public.

    • by Dunbal (464142) *

      As long as you follow grammatical rules, there is no law that states you must use synonyms in a certain manner with the most apparent meaning first. Of course the ability to use appropriate words to convey precise meaning is a skill, akin to a harmonious melody versus a cacophony. But just like the choice of notes does not define music, the choice of words does not define language. How you speak is not set in stone. It's merely who you are.

  • You can send emotions in email? And here all I've been using it for is text and the occasional file.
  • Rumor has it any mention of chair-throwing will cause your email to shut down for a 3-hour cooling off period.
  • can I get something to spice up my bland daily work emails, with selectable characterizations?

    Example: "There is an optional hot-spare that can be added to most of the redundant power supply for this blade enclosure. It is available for the 240 and 208 VAC version but not yet for the 480 three-phase. thanks very much...."

    After spice-up, selecting Joe Pesci mode: "You cocksucker! You dumbFUCK! You piece of shit dumb FUCK! Dersa fucking goddam optional hot-spare can be added to most da redundant piece-o

  • I did remember reading about a Swedish woman who got caught by that one, she cried her heart out but none of her friends answered. Need better friends? No, just moodwatch. because the message contained "nu är jag helt slut" which is something like "now I'm completely exhausted" in Swedish but the word filter had a different interpretation...

  • How long before this algorithm is hacked and reverse engineered, and anyone can use an app to tell if your letter was written using this app or not? That way clearly you would be flagged as an unstable person who has to rely on an application to moderate your abundant hostility. Job application refused!

  • I can't let you do that, Dave.

  • "There follows a brief message from the Head Librarian for your urgent attention. It has been edited for tone and content by The lman Lux Automated Decency Filter. Message follows. Run. For God sake, run. Nowhere is safe. The Library has sealed itself. We can't oh they're here. Arg. Snarg. Snich. Message ends."
  • If this actually worked I can think of a few people that it might help. As rude and obnoxious some people's e-mails may be in tone often that tone reflects the kind of person or the mood of the person fairly accurately.

    So if some of my psychotic customers were to suddenly start sending mellow polite e-mails I would definitely be suspicious at first. Then somewhat lost as I would not be able to gauge the true feeling behind the polite tone.

    To me it is like putting o n an act - people who go about all smiles

  • The reverse detection might be useful too: you are sounding too much like a equivocating manager type. You need to show more pathos, not less!

  • This reminds me of a story I once wrote about Microsoft adding a filter to Outlook so emails that were too dumb were not put in your inbox, sort of like a spam filter. But it all went horribly wrong. "Microsoft Shuts Down the Internet": http://ltuasoo.wordpress.com/2010/03/27/microsoft-shuts-down-the-internet/ [wordpress.com]
  • Dir sirs

    I am hopeful that your consumption of bovine expellent will cause a terminal condition.

    Wishing you a wonderful trip to the warmest depths of an ice free land of universal repentance.

  • The concept was introduced at least in 2000, but the inclusion of 'llama' as a warning word may have reduced its effectiveness.

    Beginner's Introduction to Perl - Part 3 - Perl.com [perl.com]

  • OK, I decided to NOT go into the obvious Gates is the Borg comments and put all kidding aside. It is about time for a tone indicator. Most folks I run across these days could definitely use one. Seems like simple decency was slowly replaced with rage over the last decade or so. Maybe it's burn out or the fact that I still have to deal with users but it seems like the overall population has slowly turned into little rage puppies. Probably because it's easy to rage with a keyboard and say (type) things y
  • The demo on their website completely failed to flag up the sentence "Do you understand them?" [the terms and conditions] which I would consider quite condescending, and more offensive than the one it did flag up which was "It is time to either solidify matters or move on."

"Consistency requires you to be as ignorant today as you were a year ago." -- Bernard Berenson

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