"I have an habitual feeling that I am leading a posthumous existence."
By now, I’m sure a lot of you have seen this article about Bob Shepherd from MSNBC:
Given the ovation at the mention of Sheppard’s name last night, it’s clear that there would be no replacement for Sheppard if he sadly never makes it to the new stadium next year.
But due to the state of text-to-speech technology, Sheppard’s voice could be the voice of the starting lineups for the next 50 years, if the Yankees choose to go that route.
Patrick Dexter, director of business development for Cepstral a leader in text-to-speech technology, told CNBC that it would be possible for the company to create a program that would enable the Yankees to have every player – the Yankees and their opponents – be announced by Sheppard’s voice forever.
Maybe I’m not adapting to the changes around me at the right pace, maybe I’m an old fogey, but this strikes me as a little creepy, no? I love his voice as much as the next bleacher creature, but part of why I like it is that it’s connected to someone, this wise elder presiding over the game, watching the game with us. When Shepherd passes, experiencing his voice won’t be the same for this Yankee fan. So why pretend?
H/T: Baseball Think Factory
edit by ag: Thanks to a few insider connections, we were able to score a sample of the technology to see how it performs. Have a listen:
I have to admit, the resemblance is uncanny