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Posts tagged text to speech

Elsevier Enables its e-Books to Read Aloud, Increasing Access for People With Print Disabilities
December 8, 2010 | 9:04 am

images.jpegFrom the press release: Elsevier, the world-leading publisher of scientific, technical and medical information products and solutions, announced today that it has enabled the text-to-speech option on all of its ePub book titles. The text-to-speech function enables an e-book to read aloud. This will facilitate access by readers who would otherwise face a range of access challenges through blindness, dyslexia, or motor difficulties. With 10-15% of the global population struggling with some form of print disability, the accessibility of publications is essential to open up access for a broad array of people. Text-to-speech enables access by people with disabilities who might otherwise...

UK Publishers Association says turn on text-to-speech
October 7, 2010 | 3:09 pm

images.jpgFrom The Bookseller: The Publishers Association, The Society of Authors, The Association of Authors Agents and The Right to Read Alliance have released a joint 'recommendation to publishers' to encourage the use of the text-to-speak function on digital devices. The option is sometimes disabled in order to protect the rights of the audio-book publisher. The PA said the recommendation would go some way to offering people with print disabilities the same rights to access e-readers as those without disabilities, and should provide a more equal footing as sales of these devices take off in the UK. The joint statement "recommends that text...

Authors Guild and publishers oddly quiet on the matter of iPad’s VoiceOver
August 27, 2010 | 8:15 am

image164[1] I didn’t notice this David Pogue article from August 12th until Techdirt and Slashdot pointed it out just the other day. Though most of the article is about other cool features offered by iOS 4 (unified contacts, Facetime tricks), in the last section Pogue talks about the VoiceOver “spoken books” feature on the iPad and wonders why the Authors Guild and publishers hasn’t freaked out about it. I previously looked at the matter back in March; you’d think they would have had time to speak up by now. Yes, this is exactly the feature that...

Kindle books cheaper in UK than US; more text to speech as well
August 10, 2010 | 4:36 pm

images.jpgThis isn't scientific, but it certainly communicates the basic truth of the matter as of August 5. As of 4:30 pm Eastern time today, August 5, a US Kindle customer could have purchased the top 25 bestselling books in the US Kindle Store sales rankings for a grand total of $252.10. Over in the UK, at exactly the same time, a UK Kindle customer could have purchased the top 25 bestselling books in the UK Kindle Store sales rankings for a grand total of £99.13, which is the equivalent of $157.58 in US dollars. The books that make up the two lists, of...

Parent vs Reader, Round 2: Dad vs Kobo
April 8, 2010 | 7:15 am

images.jpgI wrote in January about turning my stepfather loose on the Amazon Kindle. Today was Round 2 in the 'Parent vs Reader' escapades. I met my Dad for coffee today and took the Kobo Reader with me to amuse myself while I waited for him. He noticed it when he arrived and spent some time trying it out and questioning me about its various uses. FIRST IMPRESSIONS Like my stepfather, he needed a bit of convincing. This wasn't 'I want to get a reader and am curious about choosing which one will best meet my needs.' It was 'convince me that I...

Looktel bringing hand-held text-to-speech to Windows Mobile smartphones
March 31, 2010 | 9:00 am

looktel Remember the Intel Reader, the $1500 handheld device that acts as a hand-held portable scanner/OCR/text-to-speech device for the blind? A company called LookTel is in the beta stage of bringing something similar to Windows Mobile camera phones. The device will speak aloud text (package labels or street signs) or identify currency within its field of vision; snapshot-OCR magazine articles, book pages, and so forth; and allow adding voice tags to patterned labels that can be applied to containers and other objects without speakable text. According to the article, it will even allow the user to provide...

Apple releases iBooks information
March 13, 2010 | 8:15 am

Apple has posted a webpage with details about the iBooks iPad app. There are a couple of points of particular interest to TeleReaders. First of all, iBooks will allow you to “add free ePub titles to iTunes and sync them to the iBooks app on your iPad.” That’s right, the page specifically uses the word “free”. Presumably it means “DRM-free”—since iBooks won’t use or support ADEPT, if someone gave an ADEPT DRM-encumbered e-book away for free, it still would not work. Still, this is good news for Baen readers, since even Baen’s commercially-sold e-books have no DRM,...

Through text-to-speech, Roger Ebert can speak again
March 4, 2010 | 8:15 am

ebert-cancer For the past several years, film critic Roger Ebert has been unable to talk, due to complications from cancer surgery that left him without a lower jaw. But thanks to CereProc, a company that mines words and syllables from existing audio sources (such as the many commentary tracks and TV shows Ebert has recorded) and sets them up in a text-to-speech application, Ebert is now able to “speak” with a voice that is noticeably his. It will never be mistaken for his “real” voice from days of old, but it sounds a lot better than the stock...

Text to speech voices that don’t suck!
March 1, 2010 | 8:17 am

text to speech.jpgFrom eBooks Just Published: I’ve just released two incredible new text to speech voices for use with Text2Go. They are called Amy and Brian and have been developed by IVONA Software. I really think they’re amazing - certainly the best I’ve ever heard. You can read the press release on the Text2Go blog or better still listen to the press release as narrated by Amy or Brian. As a matter of fact, I did listen to the press releases at the links above, and the voices are so good that I decided to post this article....

Two weeks with an Astak 5”: Text-to-speech mode and parting thoughts
December 22, 2009 | 8:33 pm

There is one last aspect of the Astak that I need to review before shipping it back in. That is one of the major ways it differs from the Sony, and one of the ways it is similar to the Kindle 2: text-to-speech read-aloud mode. Note that with the version of firmware with which the Astak shipped, only PDFs could be read aloud. However, a more recent firmware upgrade expanded speech-compatibility and now it works with ePub too. (And perhaps other formats; I did not check.) I connected the Astak to my computer and recorded a couple of minutes of the...

Two weeks with an Astak 5”: Ergonomic Factors
November 1, 2009 | 2:03 pm

000_0002_00 I have spent the last two weeks reading e-books on the Astak, and am ready to give my first impressions. The Screen First of all, the 800x600-resolution screen. I love the screen. Of course, it is probably the same screen that any non-touch-sensitive e-ink reader has, but compared to the Sony I tested before the difference is like night and day. The touch-sensitive Sony had a huge amount of glare—but on the Astak, the glare is not there. The words are ink-on-paper clear; if the background is greyer than normal book-quality paper, it is not much darker than the newsprint on which...

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