Get yourself a Dragon

Even though the technology has been around for a few years, speech-to-text has been making waves in both the technical writing community and in many others.  Especially the program Dragon NaturallySpeaking 12.  A technical writer named Brette Frick posted a blog about the program today on the STC Notebook. (http://notebook.stc.org/business-matters-i-dont-write-any-more/#more-9779)

Having the program myself, even if it is version 11, I think it is the best program anyone who has to write could have.  After getting used to the program and learning how to effectively use it, I can now create text documents in a matter of minutes compared to hand typing them.  One of the best parts is that the program “learns” how you say things.  You can say something and it may mistake it for another word or phrase, you then correct it and Dragon will learn that is what you meant.

For technical writing, it is perfect.  It is quicker then hand typing anything and for a student, it just time efficient.  As I go out into the business field I know that I will be bringing my copy along.  P.S., it even works in Adobe programs.  You can get the newest edition for around $57 but I suggest version 11 for only about $32 and they both come with the comfy headphones with microphone attached.  (http://www.nuance.com/dragon/whats-new-version-12/index.htm)

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6 thoughts on “Get yourself a Dragon

  1. Thanks for the review! I always have wondered whether speech into text software has any practicality to it. I know this type of software has been around for a while now because I remember hearing about it and being amazed by it when I was younger. I’m sure it has vastly improved since then.

    I think software like this is interesting to look at in the context of technical writing, because if you are speaking instead of typing or hand writing, does the final product still technically count as something that has been written? Something to think about. I think it probably also depends on a person’s writing style, because I like to write slowly so I can fully think out my ideas before I put them on paper and I’m not sure if I would be able to speak with the same thoughtfulness.

    • Maybe the use of the technology would be better just for brainstorming at first. Just rambling out all of your ideas so you can at least have them down without having to worry about writing them out.

  2. I think this capability is great! It especially helps for those moments when you have great ideas and need to get the all out in a stream of conscience manner and then you go back and make edits as needed.

    • You can even edit with the Dragon, it is mildly entertaining. Also extremely useful but honestly it is is a little tricky to get the hang of the command settings. Once you have them down though, it is quite seamless

  3. I wish to refer this blog post to my old boss back home! He had bought this program but never went through the beginning steps to using it and getting it used to his voice and therefore never used it at all. My old job back home was to listen to a machine full of messages he had left and type them out into emails. I would often almost doze off after pages and pages of typing out what he had dictated. This program would have saved him and me so much time, and him so much money as he wouldn’t have to pay me to do it! 🙂 This technology is so interesting and I may have to pick myself up a copy in the future!

  4. I have never personally used Dragon specifically, but all of my interactions with recent text-to-speech programs have been fantastic. The accuracy that is available now makes it a reasonable alternative to traditional typing. The possibilities that programs like this open up for the future are endless.

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