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macrumors bot
Original poster
Apr 12, 2001
57,362
20,190
The following Spoken Interface page has appeared on Apple's website.

The page describes an upcoming feature for Mac OS X:

Introducing the spoken interface for Mac OS X. The Universal Access capabilities of Mac OS X will soon be enhanced with a spoken interface that provides a new way, through speech, audible cues, and keyboard navigation, to access the Macintosh.

The technology appears to be related to a previous job opening at Apple for programmers for a "Screen Reader" application.

According to this article, Apple was pressured to release their own solution when the only developer of such software for the Mac discontinued their version. A lack of availability of such software may have threatened Mac OS X's adoption in the education sector.
 

adamberti

macrumors regular
Jan 31, 2003
149
1
aethier said:
Hey, that sounds quite cool, think it will be a 10.3.x or in 10.4?

aethier

I would think 10.3.x, just because if it was 10.4, they would hold off on the features until it was announced.

But then I read this:
"Apple's spoken interface technology is currently in development and scheduled for delivery in the next major release of Mac OS X."

So I guess 10.4. I hope we get improved voice sythesis, Apple hasnt really done much on that fron these days - except for that new Victoria in 10.3.

-Adam
 

johnnyjibbs

macrumors 68030
Sep 18, 2003
2,962
120
London, UK
I think it's interesting to see that the Apple page says (halfway down first page):

"In fact it will be included in the next major release of Mac OS X"

So this answers the three above posters' question. We are looking at a shot of 10.4.
 

AirUncleP

macrumors regular
Dec 19, 2002
190
10
USA
Way to go Apple.

No child left behind.

It's nice to see a company develop products to help ALL of us.

I'll say it again.... WAY TO GO APPLE!!
 

andyduncan

macrumors regular
Jan 21, 2003
172
0
yay. This is a huge deal. Jaws for windows (the industry standard) is over $1000. It's also ridiculously difficult to learn and generally craptacular. It will be interesting to see how well Apple does the integration with safari; Jaws' integration with internet exploder is it's crown jewel.
 

andyduncan

macrumors regular
Jan 21, 2003
172
0
oh and I also forgot to mention. With jaws you have to buy it or run the timed demo, which means many developers never bother to test against it. Having the screen reader built-into the system by default, freely available to developers means the applications they create are much more likely to be accessible. This is also a huge deal.
 

elmimmo

macrumors 6502
Apr 18, 2002
265
0
Spain
I expect to see this turn in yet another English-only feature... Speaking of which, Apple could at least re-bundle the Spanish (Mexican, not Spaniard, but less is nothing) voices that we had in pre-X systems (not compatible on X) so that at least we can have the oh-so-new feature like text-to-speech (I cannot dream of course of getting anything similar to Speech Recognition, that is indeed demanding too much for such a relatively newly introduced English feature).
 

Diatribe

macrumors 601
Jan 8, 2004
4,248
37
Back in the motherland
Why do I get the feeling that if this continues and more stuff like this finds its way into 10.4 it is going to be an upgrade worthwhile to get.
Especially if they get the improved database in and more useful things, since 10.3 was more of a performance upgrade. We will see I guess, but it does sound promising.
 

sw1tcher

macrumors 68040
Jan 6, 2004
3,175
7,326
no new hardware updates

So this mean no new hardware (PM G5, PB G5, iMac G5) updates until OS X 10.4 is out, huh? :p
 

drewbert

macrumors newbie
Jul 22, 2002
6
0
adamberti said:
I hope we get improved voice sythesis, Apple hasnt really done much on that fron these days - except for that new Victoria in 10.3.
That's be nice, but look at the image at the bottom. Same danged voices. There's much higher quality speech synthesis out there these days.
 

Stella

macrumors G3
Apr 21, 2003
8,788
6,128
Canada
Sounds good.. especially since Mac no longer has any screen readers - *and* its "free".. with the OS, no additional software.

Mac OSX - the OS for everyone
 

MacVault

macrumors 65816
Jun 10, 2002
1,144
59
Planet Earth
Any idea if Apple will include voice recognition so that one can control the Mac by speaking to it?

edit: stupd me. looks like this functionality is already built in. ;) Guess I've just never had the need for it.
 

Frisco

macrumors 68020
Sep 24, 2002
2,475
69
Utopia
Seeing this won't be available for at least 1 year from now and no current developers making this for the Mac now--will Apple continue to lose major sales in education market?
 

arn

macrumors god
Staff member
Apr 9, 2001
16,309
5,597
silvergunuk said:
I sent a link to macrumors a few weeks ago about rumours of a spoken interface. The article said that the next revision of osx won't be out till next year. heres the link

umm.... this technology is speech synthesis/screen readers.... NOT speech recognition.

arn
 

varmit

macrumors 68000
Aug 5, 2003
1,830
0
Adapt

They pull the feet out from under Apple, and Apple still lands on its feet. I'm sure they will allow developers to add speech into their programs, making the Mac even more user Friendly. How much is the new OS going to cost. Probably only $129 - $149, something like that, when to expect, I would say Winter '04 or Summer '05. If they come out with it this year, I will be surprised and proud of the work Apple is doing. Abandon the Mac, and it will bite you in the ass. They probably relieased this news to get Education sales up, or keep people from leaving. Which special ed teachers might be getting a Mac soon if they don't have one yet.
 

Johnstkr

macrumors newbie
Sep 5, 2001
9
0
Colorado
Web standards

This also appears to be the first fruits of the zeldman / bowman / apple collaboration (at least the first piece I've seen)

edit: The linked page not the application
 

silvergunuk

macrumors regular
Mar 17, 2003
133
0
England
Genius!

It's nice to see apple adding things to their os that makes using the mac more friendlier to people with disabilities such as sight and sound or people with reading difficulties such as myself. Probably has something to do with Steve Jobs himself being dyslexic.
 

Snowy_River

macrumors 68030
Jul 17, 2002
2,520
0
Corvallis, OR
Well, I hope that Apple will have some new voices included with the next release. The addition of 'Vicky' was a nice one. A definite improvement over 'Victoria' in smoothness of her words. Now if they can do even more... :)
 

simX

macrumors 6502a
May 28, 2002
764
4
Bay Area, CA
arn said:
umm.... this technology is speech synthesis/screen readers.... NOT speech recognition.

arn

I did find a link to this video at that speech recognition article, though... seems very interesting, but would be a miracle if they actually got it to work like that.
 

MasonMcD

macrumors newbie
Jun 3, 2003
20
0
Seattle, WA
I hope this is the beginning of a trend for Apple, giving hints of the roadmap.

Has Apple ever announced something like this for a major point release this early? Maybe they're trying to shore up some government accounts, or keep them from jumping ship.
 

nagromme

macrumors G5
May 2, 2002
12,546
1,196
Yes, Panther gave us Vicki, the NEW Victoria.

But what happened to Bruce and Agnes? They took a turn for the worse! :) No more MacinTalk Pro?
 
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