Mac Happens

ViaVoice for Macintosh

22 December 1999 - Evan Kleiman

One of the greatest programs developed for the Windows platform is Voice Dictation. Voice Dictation is a program when you talk into a microphone attached to your computer, and it types what you're saying. There were many programs out on the market that did this; Dragon Naturally speaking, Via Voice, and many others. However, all of these programs had no Macintosh counterpart - until now.

Recently, IBM released their ViaVoice software for the Mac. Now, we Mac users can have voice dictation! This nifty program comes with everything you need. It even comes with a microphone in all of the iMac colors! It'll be sure to match your iMac.

ViaVoice is a very simple program too. At first, it won't recognize every single word you say. You need to work with it for a while. But, give the program time, and before you know it, it'll understand you better than anyone else. ViaVoice has two built in features to get it to know you better. "Analyze my voice" lets the program learn your voice, while "analyze my documents" analyzes your documents to learn your writing style.

However, this program isn't exactly the cheapest one. If you want to order it off of IBM's website, it costs $89.95.* It might not be the cheapest, but compared to other applications, it's cheap for what it comes with.

This program is a very useful one for many reasons. First, it's good for people who are "hunt and peck" typists. Also, it can be extremely useful for people with limited use of their hands (people with carpal tunnel or arthritis, for example). Lastly, the coolest reason to have it is because it's just plain cool!

So, whether you're buying ViaVoice for it's coolness or helpfulness, it's still a great buy.

For more information check out IBM's site.

* ViaVoice is also available from for US$79.95

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