Assuming that you have completed all the tasks described in the previous article, you are almost ready to start using speech recognition in Windows XP. Open the Regional and Language Options applet within the Control Panel. On the Languages tab, click the Details button. The Text Services and Input Languages dialog box will appear.

Under Installed services, select Speech Recognition and click the Properties button. The Speech input settings dialog box will appear as shown in the figure.

Click OK after you have configured the Advanced settings. The Language Bar button is used to configure how you want the Language Bar to appear. The available options include the following:

  • Show the Language Bar on the desktop
  • Show the Language bar as transparent when inactive
  • Show additional Language bar icons in the taskbar
  • Show text labels on the Language bar

The Advanced tab of the Text Services and Input Languages dialog box is used to configure how Windows XP interacts with the Speech Recognition Engine. Place a check beside the Extend support of advanced text services to all programs. Click OK and click Yes to restart your computer. After logging on, the Language Bar will now appear on the desktop and you can begin talking to your computer.

Using Speech Recognition
At this point, you need to know a little about the two different input modes: Dictation and Voice Command. Dictation Mode is used when you want the words you speak turned into text. For example, instead of typing a document, you can use Dictation mode. As you speak, the text is displayed in your document. Voice Command mode is used to select menu items, toolbar items, open dialog boxes, and task pane items. For example, if you wanted to format selected text in your document as bold, you would switch to Voice Command mode and say “bold”. You can change between Dictation and Voice Command mode by clicking the appropriate buttons on the Language bar or you can simply say “dictation” or “voice command”.

You can now try out the speech recognition capabilities of Windows XP. Open a program such as Microsoft Word or Notepad and click the Microphone icon on the Language bar. Click or say “Dictation” and start talking. Word will automatically start entering your text. With a little self-exploration you will soon see the benefit of speech-recognition technology.

Whether you are entering data, editing, or gaming, the Speech Recognition technology in Windows XP is a great way for you to enhance your experience. Tapping into the technology only requires a microphone, speech recognition engine, and a few configuration updates. Windows XP will then be ready to convert your spoken words into text.

[tags]Speech Recognition Engine, SRE, speech recognition, XP[/tags]