Voice to Text Software
Just before the holidays I got up early one morning and was watching television in the early morning hours. During a commercial break I saw an advertisement for Dragon NaturallySpeaking. There was a special holiday offer for the software. It was only $49 for the standard version and it said it came with a microphone and headset.
I didn’t write down the web address, but, I did make a note that part of it was “/holiday”. I figured I could google for the address. Later that morning at the office, I found the web address for the company, which is Nuance, got my Visa card out, and put in an order for the product. As I have said previously, the Standard version was only $49, but if you ordered an extra copy, you could get the extra copy for only $39, and that there would be no shipping charges apply to either.
The order was put in on the 17th of December, just a week before Christmas, and I did not expect to get it before the holiday was over. But the following week, on Tuesday after 6 PM, there was a knock on the door and the delivery man handed me the package and hurried quickly away.
A little later, I was unpacking one of the software boxes, and found that there was a headset included along with the software. I put the CD in my laptop and ran the setup, which probably didn’t take more than about 10 minutes. I then plugged in the headset and began to try out Naturally Speaking.
I was both surprised and satisfied with how well the software worked. I began to train it on how to understand my Southern drawl. The software had me read several passages which were supposed to help it understand me better. The program will also ask if it can look through your e-mail or Word documents and by seeing the words and word combinations that you use, supposedly, it can better understand you when you speak.
I worked with the software on my laptop over the holidays, and this morning I installed the other copy on my office PC. I’ve been very pleased on how well it understands what I am saying and what I wanted to do when I give commands. There is a learning process for you to understand just how to ask for certain things. For example, enclosing items in quotes, in parentheses, bolding or italicizing a phrase, or capitalizing all the letters in a word or phrase requires you to learn just how to ask.
There are several versions of NaturallySpeaking and it appears that the Standard version does not allow you to import audio. The Preferred version does. If you use the preferred version, you would be able to record your dictation on a voice recorder and then run the audio file through NaturallySpeaking.
Except for a few hiccups, this entire posting was created in Microsoft Word 2007 and then posted to this site.