Last night I dreamt that Apple created a speech recognition attachment for the iPad. The attachment was simply held to the lips of the speaker, who silently mouthed his or her intended words, which were then displayed across the iPad screen.
The speech recognition attachment was developed for use by those who had lost or damaged their vocal cords, but the attachment soon caught on with young people who wanted an easy means of communicating in noisy places where normal speech was difficult to hear, like nightclubs, crowded restaurants, public transit, etc..
It wasn’t long before the iPad speech attachment became the preferred real-time communication device for pretty much everyone. All previously spoken interactions occurred silently, allowing the “speakers” to stay plugged into their iTunes, listening to songs that, over time, contained fewer and fewer spoken words themselves. Spoken language became passé. Vocal cords withered from disuse.
Then one day some fantastic catastrophe struck the United States and the general populous was permanently, irrevocably without electricity. [Remember, this was a dream, so point out your plot holes elsewhere.] Those who had most recently charged their iPads became a sort of elite, able to lead merely because they had the only means remaining to communicate their wants and desires. This didn’t last long, of course, and the moment the last iPad winked out of life, we all turned into animals. Literally: koala bears and ostriches and pumas and weasels, and all of us mute.
And then the dream changed and it was just snow. Snow falling, snow in drifts, snow on branches, nothing but snow.
I wish I had an iPad.