Bark is Worse than the Byte

Puppy Tweets

Now available from Amazon is Puppy Tweets, a technology that will send a tweet to a dog’s Twitter account whenever the animal barks. As the LA Times explains:

A round of woofing could lead to a tweet of “I bark because I miss you. There, I said it. Now hurry home.” A frenzied run through the backyard might garner “I finally caught that tail I’ve been chasing, and . . . OOUUUCHH!”

Puppy Tweets consists of a collar tag with integrated motion and sound sensors that’s linked to a home computer via Wi-Fi. A USB receiver is included. There are 500 canned tweets, all in English, which gives Puppy Tweets a leg up (pardon the expression) on Bowlingual Voice, a device that translates barks into Japanese, which I don’t understand any better.

I’m reminded of the recruiting sergeant in Starship Troopers who tells Johnny Rico, “I don’t think we can risk assigning a boy to K-9 who didn’t outwit his mother to have his dog sleep with him,” because if Heinlein was writing his novel today he might have to use a different line, like “How can we trust a Caleb to a boy who never let his dog tweet?”

[Thanks to Diana Glyer for the story.]