back to article Shy? Socially inadequate? Fiddling with your phone could help

Help is at hand for the millions of people whose shyness is ruining their chances at improving their lot in life. Eggheads at MIT have unveiled a virtual life coaching system called My Automated Conversation Coach (MACH) which helps bashful people practise stressful situations in the hope of allowing them to cope better in real …

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Joke

Re: Life coach

But will it help Eadon come out of the Microsoft Closet ?

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Re: Life coach

Out of all the platforms you pick Windows as the one associated with social awkwardness...

Says it all Eadon!

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Re: Life coach

You know I think Eadon is a lot more intelligent than people think.

He/She/It joked that the MACH software might help shy people who are using Windows 8. Nowhere in his post did he mention that WIndows 8 is associated with shy people or social awkwardness, and yet he just trolled two people into posting by reflex.

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Alien

Sorry...

I think they are on the wrong track here.

People fiddling with their phones is a sure-fire way to stop any conversation (at least in Men who apparently can't multi-task).

The more people rely on their smart-device for their communication fix the more socially inept they will become.

Asimov described it perfectly when he envisaged a society where people never actually met 'face-to-face'. That is IMHO the way we are going.

Put down your frigging iDevice/Android and actually speak to people and interact with them directly. We (well those of us who are human that it) need social contact. Buy this I mean proper interactive contact and this half-arsed communication called Facebook/Twitter etc that so many seem to rely on these days.

Yes, I got out of bed the wrong side this morning.

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Pint

Re: Sorry...

Steve, you definately got out of the wrong side of bed this morning.... it's Monday you are excused.

Anyway I agree with what you are saying, in order to improve social skills there is only one true technique, you have to be SOCIAL, hiding behind a Pseudo will not create anything other than becoming good at online "<strke>anti>/strike>social media" which does absolutley nothing for the "real world people skills".

Telephones and social media don't connect people that weren't already "connectable".

There is nothing more efficient than a good pub and a cold pint for helping break down "social / people related shyness".

By the way Shy People, it takes effort to be social and you will always have to supply that yourself. Don't believe for a moment that it is a Deity given gift, everyone at some point meets their challenge, you just have to affront it.

<-- It's already 25° degrees at 10:00, one of these would go down a treat. ( not at 10:00 in the morning though)

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Re: Sorry...

I think you're both missing the point here. Whilst what you're saying is true, this software is coaching software. It encourages you to practise and then "get out there".

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Re: Sorry...

"[The software] is designed to run on a bog standard laptop."

And as the gentleman above me mentions, it's only a training program, not a real-time live conversation helper.

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Re: Sorry...

"By the way Shy People, it takes effort to be social and you will always have to supply that yourself. "

If it were that simple, there'd be no need for coaching...

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Re: Sorry...

Yes, and that requires coaching on a human <-> human level not on a smartphone <-> human level.

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FAIL

@Khaptain - Re: Sorry...

Wrote :- "in order to improve social skills there is only one true technique, you have to be SOCIAL .. hiding behind a Pseudo will not create anything"

That's silly. Like saying the only way to improve engineering skills is just do engineering. This is about TRAINING, as in studying engineering at college before actually building bridges and things.

Wrote :- "There is nothing more efficient than a good pub and a cold pint for helping break down "social / people related shyness".

Not sure if you mean get drunk before a date, or arrange the date in a pub. What you don't seem to understand is that for some people the problem is to get the date in the first place.

Wrote :- " it takes effort to be social and you will always have to supply that yourself"

Yes, and what is being proposed is part of that effort. What are you complaining about?

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h3
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Re: @Khaptain - Sorry...

The best way is by doing engineering. From apprentice and then studying whilst still working. The older people I know who are engineers who did that are much better and they can do everything rather than people who studied at even the best universities and can do a small part of whatever.

It is very easy to do what other people do to get dates. (You can always succeed). The thing is most of those people are desperately unhappy at least in my experience. The ones that work never happen in a calculated manner. That is the problem.

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Any word on how the 2nd group performed against the first group?

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The video seems to have turned out worse judging by the last graph in the PDF.

(I wanted to share the graph directly through some image sharer, but then I thought MIT might not like that)

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Terminator

Personally, I find both the two faces to be very unattractive. Maybe even repulsive, they have the look of a psychopath. I'm surprised something like this hasn't been already done though.

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But in the end..

There's always a huge difference between a computer program or a real person. Quite frankly I think that if people really have this kind of problems with their social live they're better of relying on friends or family. If that isn't an option then professional help.

Because actually conversing with a real person will actually make them feel comfortable with the process, because it's real. I don't think this compares at all to a computer simulation.

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Holmes

Re: But in the end..

ShelLuser wrote :- " I think that if people really have this kind of problems with their social live they're better of relying on friends or family. If that isn't an option then professional help."

I think the point is that they don't have friends. A situation perhaps hard for you to imagine. As for family, they may not be sympathetic or located nearby. My experience of other people (whether friends or family) suspecting that you do not have a GF, or simply being shy, is to make it into a huge joke at your expense.

You have a better point about professional help, but it will cost some serious money over many sessions.

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Paris Hilton

a computer-generated (and therefore extremely good-looking) face... chatting away with a person who would be way out of their league in reality

"Out of their league" in what sense? Cleverer? With a more extensive knowledge of opera, oriental cuisine, philosophy, quantum mechanics... (insert your own cultural preference here). A remarkable technological achievement if they can produce that.

Or is this a device for training people to chat up beautiful airheads?

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Anonymous Coward

> Or is this a device for training people to chat up beautiful airheads?

a. Anything wrong with that?

b. I think that with any real experience, you will find that "beautiful" and "airhead" do not necessarily go together. Some people do have it all.

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Pint

The best recipe against shyness is the realization that most people you are talking to (and this amazingly encompasses paractically 90% of the female gender, sorry ladies) are just HUGE F*CKING IDIOTS driven by very primitive rule-based logic.

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Happy

if that's your attitude, don't be surprised if you have no friends and no one to talk to

You must be trolling.

seriously the most important thing I learnt about party/social situations was that whatever I said really didn't matter. In the sense that even if I made some embarrassing conversational dud, they would not remember in 1 or 2 days time. People meet dozens of people per year, and most memories do not stick. So why worry about it. Kind of like the difference between how you fee everyone must be watching your embarrassment at age 14, and what you realize at age 34, which is that no one's looking and no-one gives a damn if your fly is undone/you have VPL/whatever.

Don;t worry, be happy.

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Facepalm

The worst thing...

The worst thing about any date is if it says "pitted dates" on the packet and you bite straight into a stone.

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