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Chapter 11. The Mac Sound Machine > Talking Things Over with Your System

Talking Things Over with Your System

Not all that long ago, the idea of talking to your computer and having it react was a futuristic notion only seen in cartoons and science fiction films. (We’ve all talked to our computer at one time or another, but I’m not talking about profanity in this case.) Apple has provided the ability to read selected text aloud since Mac OS 7.0, but Mac OS versions 8.5 and later also include the ability to have your Mac respond to spoken commands using Apple’s PlanTalk technology. In Mac OS X, you can access these abilities through the System Preferences Speech control panel; the options are divided into panels that enable you to activate and customize Speech Recognition (having your Mac recognize and respond to spoken commands) and Speech-to-Text (having your Mac read selected text aloud).

Now you’ll learn how to configure your Macintosh to read selected text aloud, select and manipulate the voice your Mac uses, and configure your system to respond to spoken commands.


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