Off-Topic: Computing for the Blind

Jerry jerry at
Tue Mar 27 10:41:49 UTC 2012

On Mon, 26 Mar 2012 18:50:06 -0400
Robert Huff articulated:

> Polytropon writes:
> >  Speech recognition requires training. Both the user and the
> >  system have to learn from each other. But you have a learning
> >  curve everywhere, be it typing, talking, or reading from a
> >  Braille output.
> 	In the case of speech recognition, that's a curve many might
> be willing to travel if they had reason to believe it was effort
> wisely invested.
> 	There are a couple of ports that cleim to do speech
> recognition.  Does anyone have experience with them?

When it comes to "speech recognition", the only two applications that
seem to work reliably at all levels are "Siri on iPhone 4S" and "Dragon
NaturallySpeaking", neither of which are obviously available on
FreeBSD. I don't believe that there is even a *nix/BSD version of
"Dragon NaturallySpeaking" in production. In any case, I do have a
friend who is severely vision impaired that uses that software with
amazing results. She can definitely dictate a letter faster than I can
manually create one.

I did try two different ports two years ago and they were sadly lacking
in their ability to achieve any true speech recognition. They were
painfully slow to even get configured. I gave up within a few hours on
the project. It was only an experiment anyway.

I sincerely hope you can find a truly useful application to suit your

By the way, in the US anyway, there are many foundations that will give
you financial assistance or grants to purchase software that will make
your PC more readily available to you. I am not sure if that kind of
support is available in your locale.

Jerry ♔

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