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I have been using Dragon NaturallySpeaking for about five years--after
an exhaustive look at what was available then. Earlier versions of DNS
had a few bugs that made it less than productive. However, they've
appeard to have worked that all out. I now have version 5.0 which hasn't
had a problem at all. It is also easy to install and "training" doesn't
take long (at the most 10-20 minutes to set up voice files.) I use DNS
for technical documents and find it can handle the vocabulary well as it
"learns" your vocabulary so you don't have to constantly spell out
words. For me, it does have some difficulty with the differences between
are and our, end and and, if and it. But, that's because I tend to
pronounce them the same way. It gives its best guess.
One feature I like is that you can improve its vocabulary. For example,
you can feed it files of material you've written and it analyzes it,
adds words not in the main dictionary (you can pick and choose what it
adds if you wish), and adjusts to your accent/dialect.
I use it also to browse the web and in a lot of third-party software
such as my bibliographic package, and Word, Excel, and PowerPoint. I've
not had any major difficulties with the latest version in these packages
at all though I've just moved to Office XP yesterday and haven't tried
it there yet. However, I don't expect any problems.
Also, I have not noticed any difference in technical support for DNS
despite the buying/selling of the company. Tech support has always
worked with me as long as necessary to get it working the way I want.
Institute for Professional Communication
University of Texas at Dallas
Richardson, TX 75083-0668
mxf011000 -at- utdallas -dot- edu
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