The Japanese vessel Kinokawu-Maru is the first ship in the world with computerised voice-control.
GV PAN The ship, Kinpkawa-Maru, in dock.
GV ZOOM IN TO SV Bridge of ship.
CU PULL BACK TO SV & CU Captain fixes wireless microphone belt. (2 SHOTS)
SV Captain giving voice instructions to ship's computer, computer acknowledges, CU speed-control lever moving as per instructions. (2 SHOTS)
SV PULL BACK TO GV Captain on bridge talking to computer.
SV PULL BACK TO GV Ship's deck at sea, voice of Captain giving instructions overlaid.
CU PAN Ship's control panel.
CUs PULL BACK TO SV 'Voice control system' sign, ship's compass screened instructions. (3 SHOTS)
GV PAN Ship's deck.
Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
Background: The Japanese vessel Kinokawu-Maru is the first ship in the world with computerised voice-control. The captain uses a wireless microphone and earphones to link his voice to the system. An electronic brain is programmed to recognise his voice-print and it respond to his commands. The computer can understand 11 different instructions and its synthesised voice has a vocabulary of forty words. At present, the system is linked to the engine room and can only control the ship's speed. However, the firm which built the ship -- Sumitomo Heavy Industry - says that in the future it will be possible to steer by using voice-control. The advantages of the system are a cut in manning costs, better security and greater freedom for the captain, who no longer needs to be confined to ship's bridge. One minor disadvantage is that if the captain's voice changes slightly because of illness, his voice-print has to be registered again with the computer.