Button: Pride 2020

This Service Makes Sure You’ll Never Misinterpret A Text Again

Photographed by Erin Yamagata.
Your crush sends you a text and you're mystified. You spend hours trying to interpret exactly what the message means. Every period, every ellipsis, every slang word becomes a clue; your closest friends weigh in their thoughts. Finally, there's a new website that will take the guesswork out of cryptic texts and emails. Tone Analyzer is a service that detects and interprets emotions in text using linguistic analysis. All you have to do is plug sentences into Tone Analyzer and press the analyze button. From there, you’ll be shown results from the analysis of the document as a whole and sentence-by-sentence. The color-coded results show you how much anger, joy, fear, disgust, or sadness are likely in the text, along with additional analysis about the language style (Is it analytical, confident, or tentative?) and its social tendencies. (Does it exhibit traits such as openness, conscientiousness, extraversion, or agreeableness?) A quick example from the Tone Analyzer's website explains that the sentence, "Sorry, can't make it." has a 50% likelihood of sadness. But if you change the period to an exclamation point, the likelihood of sadness drops to 38% and anger becomes the most dominant emotion. In a few tests, our results were mixed. It nailed that our own messages had a high level of conscientiousness and emotional range, but found "disgust" in some texts where there was zero disgust intended. It did, however, seem to recognize emoticons — typing "have a good day" with a smiley face at the end yielded a 96% likelihood of joy. Swapping that smiley with a frown, joy went down to 60% while sadness went up from a 9% to 46%. If you try it out, take the results with a grain of salt. The makers suggest using the service for market research or personal branding, but you know you're mostly going to be analyzing texts from your S.O. or to check the real meaning behind that email from your boss. You can go ahead and give it a shot, here.

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