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Posts Tagged ‘Text to Speech’

The TechDis voices are young English voices which are free to use for all post 16 students and staff. You can find more information on how to register here.

Once you have registered there are some things you need to be aware of so you can either install the voices yourself or ask your IT department. All the information is in this short video.

Installing The Voice – What You Need to Know from JISC TechDis on Vimeo.

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The TechDis Toolbox has information on plug ins for the most popular types of browser.  Mozilla Firefox has a number of accessibility extensions that you can download to make browsing easier.  These include Reader for Firefox, which removed all the clutter from the page which could cause distractions.

Text to Voice is another plug in which does exactly that – turns text on the screen into audio that you can listen to. It also has a video download plug in which means you can download content you have found and view it again on a mobile device or offline.

Examples of these can be seen in the video below.

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The TechDis Toolbox includes resources highlighting things that may make it easier to access information on the internet.  Chrome is a browser which has been developed by Google and it has a number of options or extensions which enables a user to convert the information on a web page into a different format.

These include –

  • ChromeVox is a screen reader which can use any installed voices – such as TechDis Jess or Jack
  • Chrome Speak which reads out loud any selected text – text to speech
  • Readability – reduces the clutter on a web page and enables the user to change the font size etc
  • Flash Video Downloader – enables you to download video so that you can view it later on a PC or hand held device such as a phone or tablet.

 

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Here at TechDis we commissioned Cereproc in Edinburgh to develop two high quality synthetic voices.  Most free to use synthetic voices are very robotic and sound very unnatural.  Here’s a good explanation of what a synthetic voice is and how you could use it.

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As well as the new Toolbox site the team at TechDis have also launched 2 new synthetic voices TechDis Jack and TechDis Jess.  These can be used to have text read outloud to you.  This is called Text to Speech because that’s what the software does – it converts written text into speech which you can listen to anywhere.  We have a number of videos and guides on how this works but for a start we have an introduction to the idea of having text read outloud.

Check out the other videos and guidelines and see if you are eligible for these free voices.

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