Computer usability

This pops up from time to time.
Some of us have a problem with the the conventional keyboard and mouse - and some of us have a very big problem!
I got all introspective about the number of typos I was making - and most of them seemed to come from my left hand (and that is the one with the intention tremor).

Thanks to a booklet put out by the Parkinsons Society, I found that Windows 7 has a voice recognition (or speech to text) facility built in. So I dug out a headset mounted microphone, and started to play. It works quite well in some things (Word, for example), but is not quite so good in this forum or my e-mail program (Eudora). This could be me, or the microphone, or the whole speech to text thing.

My guess is that if I had a lot of text to enter, it would be worth dictating into Word, and then doing a copy-and-paste to where I really wanted it.

If you wan to take a look, go to the Control Panel, and put Speech into the search box - and up it will come.

This might just be of use to someone.


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Hi Geoff

The advances in technology are fantastic for dealing with everyday things that some of us have difficulties with. I have issues with my left arm/hand where some times they refuse to do as I want them to, and get very frustrated at all the corrections I have to make.

The only problem for me would be how any swear words would be interpreted by the system, as I find swearing when no one is around a great stress release!


I just tried to post a reply to Geoff (not using my Voice Activated Software which is on my work comp!) and it disappeared.

All I was saying is that I have VAS from work and it is a Godsend - it works with ALL of my programmes (including the bespoke work programmes I use) and it is IMHO much, much better than the “free” one in Windows.

I use DRAGON NATURALLY SPEAKING and it is very, VERY good. It also does mouse actions (highlight, cut, paste etc etc) but I don’t use them so I can’t comment on that.

Only problem is that it is a bit “shy” about swear words (which I genuinely need for my job), but I am gradually teaching it to vbe less bashful about my heffing and jecking

I totally agree with Boblatina about Dragon. This is almost certainly the best speech-to-text package around.

All I can say about the Windows freebie, is that for the cost of a cheap microphone it can be an easy way of finding out if VAS is for you.

One answer to the question of swearing and VAS is to use another language.
This works quite well provided no-one else around knows what the words mean.


‘Heffing and jecking’ you guys make me chuckle… more words for my favourite list xx

Husband just said our Acer laptop has got a built in windows speech recognition facility. Just needs setting up-is this the same thing?

Oops, sorry Geoff x