Microsoft’s Jay Waltmunson sent me “Text-to-Speech” samples from the upcoming Windows Vista operating system.
Click to listen to:
SAMPLE #1 – Windows Vista “Anna”
SAMPLE #2 – Windows XP “Sam” (for comparison)
PREVIOUSLY there were only a few “Text-to-Speech” options:
Office – Unfortunately, only previous versions of Excel could “talk to you” – as well as “force” the other Office programs to speak.
TODAY there are many (easy to use) solutions available:
OFFICE 2003’s built-in Language Toolbar allows all Office programs to easily use “Text-to-Speech” technology.
- on the Window’s Toolbar, from Toolbars, select Language Bar
- From now on: simply highlight the text you wish read, then from the Language Bar click on the “Speak Text” icon! (Great when proofing a Word document, or you want an Outlook email read aloud.)
WINDOWS SPEECH TOOLS (GOODIES)
NEW & TOO COOL! DeskBot (based upon MS-Agents) can read text in ANY application (even with Internet Explorer!). Just highlight the text and double click the MS-Agent character. Additional Microsoft SAPI 4.0 Voices. (Thanks again Jay)
Microsoft Speech Server is the only speech platform to comprehensively support Web-based touchtone (DTMF) and speech-enabled IVR applications, as well as multimodal applications, and includes speech application development tools, Microsoft’s enterprise-grade Automatic Speech Recognition (ASR) engine, the ScanSoft® Speechify™ Text-to-Speech (TTS) engine, a prompt engine, a SALT Interpreter (voice browser), and telephony services. (Support Blog: Speech Server Coffeehouse)
Order a FREE 180 Day Evaluation CD
NEW! Voice Prompt Vocabularies for Microsoft Speech Application SDK – 500 Reusable number, date, time and navigation prompts recorded with professional voice talent in recording studio.
Coding4Fun – Giving Computers a Voice (programming tutorial)
WikiPedia – "Speech Synthesis"
NEW! GotSpeech.NET – The online community for Microsoft Speech Server developers
(Remember this development is not trivial; it must work for multiple languages!)