Computer Talk: Incorporating Speech Recognition Software into Daily Tasks

Getting more done in less time. That is a typical mantra for technical writers and communicators. Perhaps you have expressed needing an extra hand; your voice could be that extra hand. Using speech recognition software allows you to control your computer with simple voice commands. Microsoft does not promote it much, but newer Windows versions contain Windows Speech Recognition preinstalled.

Enabling Speech Recognition

  1. In the Taskbar at the bottom of the screen, click the search.
  2. Type Speech Recognition.
  3. Click Windows Speech Recognition It will open a window where you can select microphone type.
  4. Click Next.
  5. You will be prompted to read a sentence for the software to recognize your voice. click Next when ready.
  6. After reading, click Next.
  7. Select other necessary options such as document review, and speech recognition enabled on startup. Click Next after each option to advance through the wizard.
  8. Once completed, the status box appears. You can use this to switch Voice Recognition on and off.

Using Speech Recognition

To start, say “start listening”.  Once enabled you can use it to open applications such as Word, notepad, or a new email. Once an email or document is open, just start talking to dictate text.

You can also tell the computer to open the command line box, restart or shutdown. When you want to stop, say “stop listening”.

Yes you can even use it to play Solitaire!

 

Here’s a Notepad file created entirely using speech recognition:

These are the words used to create it:

  • Start listening
  • Open Notepad
  • Hello notepad
  • comma
  • press enter
  • today’s reminders are
  • colon
  • press enter
  • press tab
  • business writing exercise one
  • press enter
  • press tab
  • promote blog articles
  • press enter
  • press tab
  • request degree review for graduation
  • press enter
  • press file
  • press save
  • home
  • to do list
  • backspace
  • delete
  • save
  • stop listening

This is a technology worth exploring. As communicators and technical writers we must keep our skills fresh and always evaluate new technology to add to our tool set.

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