Re: voice recognition tools

Subject: Re: voice recognition tools
From: Peter <pnewman1 -at- home -dot- com>
To: ROBERT SIDMAN <scribe -at- ezonline -dot- com>
Date: Sat, 09 Sep 2000 22:40:47 -0400


> After suffering a stroke in December 1997 I totally rely on voice
> recognition software for written communications. Prior to the stroke I was
> a two-handed typist/writer. My left-handed penmanship was readable. After
> the stroke, I no longer have use of the left arm. Learning to write
> right-handed at age 59 was not nice. The result is a scrawl that makes
> doctors insanely jealous and produces something even pharmacists can't read.
> Regardless of whatever software tool you may eventually use you must have
> the proper hardware configuration, otherwise it may not be worth the effort.
> Having worked at home on my own computer and at my federal job, I have gone
> through a series of processors. I can honestly state from experience that
> if you do not have a minimum processor of a Pentium III at 600 MHz or
> better, forget about it.
> You also need at least a 128MB of RAM and lots of storage. Stored voice
> files take 750 KB for every 10 minutes of speaking.
<SNIP> My situation is not ideal. I would have much preferred not to
have the
> stroke. Having had it, I am so thankful that it did not kill me, as one did
> my closest friend. But having come this far back, I often wonder, sometimes
> aloud, how in my situation, stroke victims like me communicated before there
> were computers and voice recognition software. The mental answers I come up
> with are not nice.

Please bear in mind that I am only talking about DNS v 4.0
Professional. V 5 has just hit the market and professional v5 has not
yet been released. The testers are under an NDA so valid information is
1. Dragon operates quite happily with a PIII 500, and 256 MB RAM. (RAM
is more important than processor speed.)
2. With that setup my typing rate is about as fast as I can speak.
3. Dragon features such as, "correct" and "select and say" do not
function in Excel, unless Excel is in edit mode.
4. The workaround is to use the dictation pad for corrections when
misrecognitions occur.
5. Sometimes one needs to take a step backwards. If you have a must need
for a spreadsheet, you might have to go Unix based and use
DragonDictate, an older discrete speech product, with AIX, a translator
that permits the use of a DOS program un Unix. I wish I had a better
answer for you.
At present MS has a new speech API in beta that shows a lot of promise.
There are also new products under development that respond to finger
motion, but AFAIK, not yet available.
Keep the faith. The alternative is one area that I am not anxious to


"When a man sits with a pretty girl for an hour, it seems like a
minute. But let him sit on a hot stove for a minute-and it's
longer than any hour. That's relativity," - Einstein-

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