Goodbye to GOOG-411 and Biddy-Biddy-Boop

Google today announced it is shutting down its free U.S. and Canada directory assistance service, 1-800-GOOG-411, to put its focus on its other speech recognition services and extending them to new languages. As of Nov. 12, the number will go dead.

GOOG-411’s “Biddy-Biddy-Boop”

One of the things that makes the GOOG-411 directory service awesome — besides the fact that it’s free — is that cool “bippedy-bippedy-bippedy” sound it makes while searching. And now, for the first time ever, the man behind the “bips” (and the voice of 1-800-GOOG-411) breaks his silence to talk about that famous sound.
“We call it the ‘biddy-biddy-boop’ sound,” said Bill Byrne, whose official title at Google (GOOG) is senior voice expert. “The technical term is the ‘fetch audio.'” [digg=]
The fetch audio is precisely what its name implies, the sound the service makes to let you know that it’s working on retrieving the information you’ve requested. Putting the fetch together, however, isn’t as easy as you’d think.
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