It would almost seem that I’m having a bit of a feast of posting on the blog. It’s not that I’m trying to enter a novel writing competition but rather I am testing Dragon NaturallySpeaking version 11. This is my third post in two days. The two previous posts were both done using the admin pages of my WordPress blog but this one I’m writing within Word 2007 and publishing from within Word. I can add at this point that Dragon NaturallySpeaking correctly added WordPress in its camel case. In fact trying to use the word font made the font dialogue highlight that’s probably because I paused before using the word. But otherwise I must say that the trial is going quite well.
I can certainly pump out quite a few words very quickly using this software. It does seem strange sitting in the study by myself talking to the computer but I don’t think I’ll ever be able to type as fast as I’m writing this. There is always the danger when using this sort of software that you write as you speak. If you are not watching the screen and reading could go a long and get some very strange or misspelt words. And there’s absolutely nothing stopping you having run-on sentences.
Setting up the software didn’t take very long at all, a matter of about 20 min. The program seems to be able to localise to some of the more common versions of English including United Kingdom United States, Australia and New Zealand. I’m not sure whether it would cope will that Irish or Scottish accent but since I don’t have one of those I guess I will never find out. After each use the program takes some time to shut down and this might be to do with the program updating an individual’s profile. The program is certainly built around individual profiles so I imagine several users would be able to access the software on one computer.
Thinking about your writing certainly helps; I’m writing this as I go. This means that I have to halt think and then proceed. However I have now written about 400 words in the space of about 7 or 8 minutes. I think this would take me quite a great deal of time if I were actually typing. My typing is certainly beyond the hunt and peck method of using two fingers, but my typing is certainly does not have any sort of secretarial speed. I think it would be difficult using this software in an open office or even in a shared office. But working alone as I am now it seems to work quite well. There is some background noise I can hear but the microphone obviously isn’t picking this up so there is not any interference. I can report that Dragon NaturallySpeaking didn’t try to type the sad lamenting meow of our cat.
So here I am nearly up to 500 words the accuracy is quite good it does misunderstand some words but if I speak like a radio announcer and I mean a proper radio announcer like those found on public radio there is no problem. I haven’t mastered all the complex commands that come with this program it is possible to change words, delete things, highlight things and even control the computer with this program however my main reason for using it is to speed up my typing. Inevitably this may lead to more blog posts.