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Talking Dog Breeding System

Dogs will evolve to use human language someday, let's give that process a little kick start.
  [vote for,

Dogs already learn to mimic human expressions and we know they can make talking sounds, they have the same basic mouth parts and muscles we do.

The speech centers of the brain are small so they might not be able to recite poetry, but they'll certainly be able to say "Hungry. Dog treat." "Walk." etc.

So to kick start this inevitable evolution:

1- Dog computer with treat dispenser. The gabby pooch's meal will be spread out over an hour or two as it's doled out in single bite chunks throughout the meal/lesson. The computer evaluates the dog's abilities and starts with rudimentary sounds. Howls and growls are demonstrated and then variations of them are shown incrementally. When the dog mimics the lesson example correctly, he gets a treat.

So you've got a dog who's talking to the best of their genetic ability, now what?

2- Dogs are rated as to their verbosity quotient and cross bred with other good talkers.

After a hundred generations or so, BAM! Talking dogs.

Like I said, gonna happen eventually, might as well be sooner than later.

"Rover! Speak! Speak boy!"

"Sure. What do you want me to say?"

doctorremulac3, Oct 19 2017

Snail_20Koans Reading, and writing snails. [xenzag, Oct 20 2017]

Sirius https://www.waterst...ledon/9780575099425
Way ahead of you there. [nineteenthly, Oct 20 2017]

The palaeoanthropology of vocalisation I: vocal anatomy https://books.googl...v=onepage&q&f=false
from Iain Morley, the prehistory of music (OUP 2013) [pocmloc, Oct 20 2017]

"I don't want to lay down!" If playback doesn't...g your device. 0:02
[2 fries shy of a happy meal, Oct 22 2017]

Prior art The Intelligent Mouse Project
Also, [2fries], I think you copied the wrong thing when you added the previous link. [notexactly, Mar 18 2018]


       So you've created Dogbert ... congratulations.
8th of 7, Oct 20 2017

       Talking dogs? - child's play! I once devised an idea of how to teach reading and writing skills to snails.(see link)
xenzag, Oct 20 2017

       This is probably cognitive bias, but I often think I hear "harro!" as a greeting. So maybe, like native speakers of certain East-Asian languages, dogs have trouble differentiating their liquid fricatives. This may be because their tongues curl differently from ours, as you can see if you watch slow-mo video of a dog drinking.   

       Therefore you should start by teaching your dog Japanese, which has the added bonus of avoiding consonant clusters.   

       Dog: "Bark! Bark!"
Sensei san: "Boku!"
Dog: "Bark!"
Sensei san: "Yatta!"
Dog: ?
pertinax, Oct 20 2017

       Also, dogs speaking Japanese would be cooler
hippo, Oct 20 2017

       Would they say "Horrrrrrrrrr ! " and wave a sword at you ?
8th of 7, Oct 20 2017

       How weird would it be if they actually ended up talking like Scoobie Doo? Plausible since their tongue, pallet, mouth shape etc are different enough that there would most definately be a "dog sounding voice".   

       I hate Scoobie Doo. That's the cartoon that got me to stop watching cartoons as a kid. It came out in 1969, I was 8, and remember thinking "How stupid do they think we are?".   

       And Shaggy was a hippie. I hated hippies. Sometimes when we'd drive over from the ghetto to the good side of town the hippies there would be protesting and rioting. My dad would tell us to lock our doors as we'd drive by. I think they were wanting to go to war with Vietnam or something.   

       Anyway, probably a good thing. Rather than watching cartoons I did something like work on getting my ham radio license or going out to play at a place called "outside", something that kids used to do before the internet.   

       Speaking of HAM radio, it just occurred to me, I've forgotten morse code. CQ and SOS is about all I remember. Guess it wasn't that necessary in my life.
doctorremulac3, Oct 20 2017

       No, not at all - that would be impolite. It would be much more like:

You: "Hello Rover, who's a good boy?? Who's a good doggie???"
Rover: "Konichiwa"
You: "Would you like some breakfast? Would you? Would you??? Yes you would, you lovely doggie!!" *
Rover: "Domo arigato gozaimasu"

(* all dog owners talk to their pets as if they were mentally-deficient chidren)
hippo, Oct 20 2017

       Despite his name, and the Kombi van, wasn't Shaggy too short- haired to be a hippy?
pertinax, Oct 20 2017

       He had hippy posture. At least Hollywood's idea of hippy posture.   

       And he was either stoned or functionally retarded, mentally challenged or whaterver. Anyway, I hated him and his stupid cowardly dog too. Give me some cartoon characters with some sense of adventure. Johnny Quest, now we're talking some good Saturday morning programming!   

       LOL, just occurred to me, if I had a psychiatrist, this would be the point where they said "Let's talk about your anger towards this cartoon dog."   

       And Hippo, I missread your annotation, but it made me think that there would be great honor bestowed to the people whose language was spoken by the first talking dog, and it would be scientifically momentous, along the lines of:   

       "Steam engine - England"   

       "First Man In Space = Russia,   

       First Man On the Moon = U.S.A.,   

       First Language Spoken By An Advanced Non Human = Japanese.   

       By the way, are we purposefully steering away from helping chimps advance in their evolution because of the Planet Of The Apes movies? Movies do effect how we do things. When I was a kid going to be beach everybody would be swimming in the ocean and then Jaws came out and, well, nobody swims in the ocean any more besides surfers.   

       I think we're a little intimidated by the idea of super smart apes getting big ideas about stuff like "Breaking out of this cage." and "Learning how to fire that tranquilizer gun you use on us.".
doctorremulac3, Oct 20 2017

       It is quite necessary to read the entire annotation history before coming to that one, especially if you happen to be a fan of Japanese culture...   

       I'm skeptical that creating noises and interpreting language would develop colinearly. I suspect the second is going to take a few hundred more generations, if it happens at all.
RayfordSteele, Oct 20 2017

       Dogs can already make word sounds, how hard to make them associate certain word sounds with certain responses from humans?   

       But that gives me an idea.
doctorremulac3, Oct 20 2017

       I think the most you'd get would be dogs that have the same range of vocalisations as current dogs, but modulated to sound humanoid. You'd get a dog that just shouted "FOOD FOOD FOOD" or "HAPPY HAPPY HAPPY".   

       Dogs are basically autistic. I think their vocalisations are basically incidental - it's not as if they think "if I make this sound, the human will understand it, and he will do this". They just have a noise they make when they're happy, another noise they make when they're hungry, etc. True language needs a whole level of thought that I don't think dogs have.   

       <pauses, to allow [8th] to make a comment about the Welsh>
MaxwellBuchanan, Oct 20 2017

       // Welsh //   

       Sp. "welsh" or alternatively, "Baaaaaa !"   

       // it's not as if they think "if I make this sound, the human will understand it, and he will do this". //   

       You have obviously never spent any time with an adult Shih Tzu.
8th of 7, Oct 20 2017

       That's because there is no such thing as an adult ShitZu. The ones you see are all juveniles. At 14 years they metamorphose - did you never wonder why you never see juvenile toupées?
MaxwellBuchanan, Oct 20 2017

       //True language needs a whole level of thought that I don't think dogs have.//   

       Well, how do we grow the speech center of a dog's brain with gene splicing or something?   

       Put it another way, what's the difference, besides size, between the speech center of the human brain and the... whatever they have that's similar, center of a dog's brain? Can we just mess with it to supercharge it somehow?   

       I know they've done rudimentary experimentation with human and sheep gene splicing in some countries for thousands of years. <-- (joke)
doctorremulac3, Oct 20 2017

       //Put it another way, what's the difference, besides size, between the speech center of the human brain and the... whatever they have that's similar//   

       I'm not sure there is an equivalent, or at least not a near one. I honestly don't know, but I think there is a whole mode of thinking that differs fundamentally between humans (who see ourselves as components in an environment which includes other people, and which we model based on perception and with which we interact) and dogs (who just "are"). It's maybe like asking which part of a human brain is equivalent to a bat's echolocation part (and no, it's not the visual cortex).   

       Clearly, you can evolve from not having language to having language (that's how we got where we are), but I suspect it needs some very deep-level editing of the way the brain works.
MaxwellBuchanan, Oct 20 2017

       // very deep-level editing //   

       ... from which it is possible to deduce that at some point in the development of the welsh, someone when confronted with the prompt "SAVE CHANGES AND EXIT F10, EXIT F2, RETURN ESC" pressed F2 ...
8th of 7, Oct 20 2017

       Ah yes, the old Bachiawnmeddal user interface.
MaxwellBuchanan, Oct 20 2017

       <writes HITMAN FOR IAN TINDALE on card>   

       <places card and hat on ground>   

       <drops handful of coins in hat>   

       <waits for passersby>
8th of 7, Oct 21 2017

       //their bark is worse than the byte.//   

       I went to type a response and... nothing came, so I'll write poetry.   

       "I raise my eyes to this post, and my hands stop just above those plastic keys. No response is forthcoming, just the sound of wind and ghosts. My ancestors offer no wisdom, so there I sit, my gaze fades and my thoughts turn, as they often do, to football. The American kind of course, that people used to watch until it turned political."   

       Doctorremulac3 Oct 21, 2917   

       Thank you.   

       (LOL at the post anyway)
doctorremulac3, Oct 21 2017

       // my thoughts turn, as they often do, to football. The American kind of course, that people used to watch until it turned political. //   

       "The one constant through all the years, Doc, has been baseball. America has rolled by like an army of steamrollers. It’s been erased like a blackboard, rebuilt, and erased again. But baseball has marked the time. This field, this game, is a part of our past, Doc. It reminds us of all that once was good, and that could be again. Oh people will come, Doc. People will most definitely come."   

       Or words to that effect.
8th of 7, Oct 21 2017

       Would the person or persons who kidnapped our friend 8 and wrote this postive, even moving piece about American culture please bring our friend back?   

       Just realised that's from that movie. Never saw it but I think now I will. I have some free time this Sunday. About three hours to be exact.
doctorremulac3, Oct 21 2017

       Ian, if I were feeling a bit silly about posting an idea to get dogs to talk, I'm feeling a bit better now seeing your link that shows people who've basically devoted their lives to the study.   

       And they might say they're just studying dog cognition for the sake of science, but you know they're trying to create a super dog that wears a smoking jacket, smokes a pipe and makes droll witticisms. They just might not admit it to the financial review board.
doctorremulac3, Oct 21 2017

       And yes, it would have an upper class British accent as you suggested by using the word "fancy".   

       Although a cockney accent on a pitbull terrier would be what I'd opt for. Put a little top hat on that sucker. Give 'em a cigar to chew on.   

       I picture the little guy stomping around saying stuff like "Ey mate, down't be such a wanker and give us doggie treat eh?". Although "down't" is probably the Australian, not the cockney version of "don't".
doctorremulac3, Oct 22 2017

       Evolution is an inhumane, and cruel method of optimization. Why not just to go and directly upgrade their speech centers? It'll take 12 years to get to 1000$ computer that is as powerful as human brain, and many generations of competition and selection to achieve that the evolutionary way.
Inyuki, Oct 22 2017

       // It'll take 12 years to get to 1000$ computer that is as powerful as human brain //   

       Seriously, you need to review whatever courier you're using. UPS can ship a computer to you in three days for about 25 bucks ... that's a really poor quality of service you're getting.   

       Most humans, even on good day, would struggle to outperform a Pentium III, so it's not exactly a challenging performance target.
8th of 7, Oct 22 2017

       Given our current preferred method of communication, dogs will probably be txting before they start talking.
RayfordSteele, Oct 24 2017

       It's already known to be possible to teach dogs to read.
notexactly, Sep 24 2019


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