KnowBrainer Speech Recognition
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Topic Title: Microsoft debuts "Voice Access" feature in Windows 11
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Created On: 12/10/2021 11:42 AM
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 Microsoft debuts "Voice Access" feature in Windows 11   - Russell - 12/10/2021 11:42 AM  
 Microsoft debuts   - Scribe - 12/11/2021 12:42 AM  
 Microsoft debuts   - sterlingtimes - 12/12/2021 05:49 AM  
 Microsoft debuts "Voice Access" feature in Windows 11   - Lunis Orcutt - 12/12/2021 12:46 PM  
 Microsoft debuts   - sterlingtimes - 12/12/2021 05:32 PM  
 Microsoft debuts   - Lunis Orcutt - 12/13/2021 10:43 AM  
 Microsoft debuts   - wristofdoom - 12/19/2021 01:50 PM  
 Microsoft debuts   - Lunis Orcutt - 12/19/2021 06:07 PM  
 Microsoft debuts   - dilligence - 12/19/2021 10:38 PM  
 Microsoft debuts   - michaelbeijer - 07/15/2022 06:24 PM  
 Microsoft debuts   - alexander - 01/05/2022 09:08 PM  
 Microsoft debuts   - tar - 01/20/2022 12:39 PM  
 Microsoft debuts   - jrp3 - 02/02/2022 04:32 PM  
 Microsoft debuts   - Lunis Orcutt - 02/02/2022 05:49 PM  
 Microsoft debuts "Voice Access" feature in Windows 11   - michaelbeijer - 07/13/2022 12:54 PM  
 Microsoft debuts   - Mphillipson - 02/07/2022 04:47 AM  
 Microsoft debuts   - Mphillipson - 02/20/2022 08:50 AM  
 Microsoft debuts   - tchirambaguwa - 02/20/2022 09:08 AM  
 Microsoft debuts "Voice Access" feature in Windows 11   - dilligence - 02/20/2022 01:05 PM  
 Microsoft debuts "Voice Access" feature in Windows 11   - Tiger Feet - 03/31/2022 03:51 PM  
 Microsoft debuts   - michaelbeijer - 07/15/2022 06:12 PM  
 Microsoft debuts   - Lunis Orcutt - 07/15/2022 06:14 PM  
 Microsoft debuts   - Lunis Orcutt - 07/15/2022 07:09 PM  
 Microsoft debuts   - Mphillipson - 07/28/2022 03:38 AM  
 Microsoft debuts   - Superman711 - 08/28/2022 02:21 PM  
 Microsoft debuts "Voice Access" feature in Windows 11   - Lunis Orcutt - 08/28/2022 06:32 PM  
 Microsoft debuts "Voice Access" feature in Windows 11   - MDH - 08/28/2022 11:26 PM  
 Microsoft debuts   - Lunis Orcutt - 08/29/2022 12:42 PM  
 Microsoft debuts   - kkkwj - 08/29/2022 10:25 PM  
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 12/11/2021 12:42 AM
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Scribe
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Thank you - this is really interesting. They have provided interesting features and quite a long list of commands.

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 12/12/2021 05:49 AM
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sterlingtimes
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"Voice access supports English-U.S. language only". Presumably not British English.
 12/12/2021 12:46 PM
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Lunis Orcutt
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Our understanding is Voice Access currently only supports US English but this will probably change when it is officially released. Only the Dev channel (latest features but not as stable) can currently test Voice Access. Beta testers (stable but not finished) will get it later and then the public. Keep in mind that Microsoft probably doesn't want Voice Access to be much better than the Dragon Home Edition, which it already looks dangerously close to. When Voice Access is released, Nuance really should drop the Home Edition because it will potentially be an embarrassment at that point.

The 2 significant shortcomings are the inability to edit or create a personal vocabulary or commands. If Microsoft added these features, there might not be any reason to purchase Dragon Professional Individual



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 12/12/2021 05:32 PM
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sterlingtimes
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Many have written off Mouse Grid. But here it is presented to a new generation of voice people.
 12/13/2021 10:43 AM
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Lunis Orcutt
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Microsoft is also including a numbering scheme which similar to Click by Voice but works everywhere. We can't think of a way that the Microsoft Mouse Grid wouldn't be significantly slower than using the new numbers.

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 12/19/2021 01:50 PM
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wristofdoom
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It seems like there are now 3 different versions of dictation built into Windows: Windows Speech Recognition, this new Voice Access, and whatever you call it when you press Windows + H on your computer.

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 12/19/2021 06:07 PM
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Lunis Orcutt
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When Microsoft introduced the Edge browser, they kept Internet Explorer a long time. We would like to see Microsoft remove WSR to eliminate possible confusion but our best guess is that they will keep it around like they did Internet Explorer. We further suspect that when you try to open WSR, you will be prompted to use Voice Access instead.

Windows 11 already includes cloud dictation which is equivalent to Voice Access without command capabilities (same speech engine).

Bottom line: You are correct.

Keep in mind that when you press {Win+H} you are only using the cloud version. When Nuance releases Voice Access, you will have the whole enchilada. We haven't performed any serious testing but we found Voice Access accuracy to be on par with Dragon. However, from a functional point of view, comparing Voice Access to Dragon would be equivalent to comparing WordPad to Microsoft Word. The only Voice Access advantage would be the new Numbers Mode which we expect to appear in Dragon 16

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 12/19/2021 10:38 PM
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dilligence
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I tested Voice Access in one of the Windows 11 beta versions. It's quite accurate but text deployment is a lot slower than Dragon®.

 

I was pleasantly surprised by the good-looking mousegrid and the fast responding Show Numbers feature (which now are flags). 

 

I was interested if Voice Access dictation would be context aware in some way. That appears to be so, partially but only in Microsoft Edge. You can select a word by voice and then dictate something else. However what you then dictate always appears capitalized.

 

Nonetheless Voice Access can be a very interesting feature to use alongside with Dragon®.



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 07/15/2022 06:24 PM
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michaelbeijer
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Hey, will you guys ever add support for using Voice Access with SP Dictation box (instead of Dragon as the underlying SR engine)?

Michael



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 01/05/2022 09:08 PM
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alexander
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"equivalent to Voice Access without command capabilities (same speech engine)."

What speech engine would this be? I assume it's not the Dragon speech engine they just acquired?

what are the differences between the WSR numbers mode and the voice access one?
 01/20/2022 12:39 PM
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tar
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WSR numbering covers the entire control, and sort of blinks off and on to allow you to see the control again. Voice Access emulates the way VoiceComputer has been numbering controls for years.  So, I view Voice Access as a scaled down combination of Dragon and VoiceComputer. Given that Microsoft is vastly superior in resources than either of these companies, I would hope they will continue to develop a much more robust and useful product in the long term than what we have available today. But I suspect it will take a long time before that happens. 



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 02/02/2022 04:32 PM
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jrp3
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Originally posted by: tar WSR numbering covers the entire control, and sort of blinks off and on to allow you to see the control again. Voice Access emulates the way VoiceComputer has been numbering controls for years.  So, I view Voice Access as a scaled down combination of Dragon and VoiceComputer. Given that Microsoft is vastly superior in resources than either of these companies, I would hope they will continue to develop a much more robust and useful product in the long term than what we have available today. But I suspect it will take a long time before that happens. 

 

Hey Tom, would you mind telling me a bit more about your perspective that voice access is a "scaled down combination"? Are you specifically referring to the number overlays with that sentiment, or speaking about the experience more generally? When you say "much more robust and useful," what are some examples of things you think could/should be improved?

 

I actually lead the design for voice access, so I'm super curious to hear more. We are always looking to understand what our users like and dislike (or want to see) about the experience, to help us better meet user needs!

 02/02/2022 05:49 PM
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Lunis Orcutt
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We would like to jump in if you don't mind… This following is only our personal ($0.02) opinion: 

 

We believe a full function speech recognition program should include a Vocabulary Editor that end-users can minimally add or delete words and the ability to create rudimentary commands; perhaps step-by-step and boilerplate text. Of course this could compete with Dragon which might be counterproductive. Voice Access accuracy seems to be excellent. Note that we are considering porting KnowBrainer 2023 to Voice Access. And… as you can see, “Voice Access” is already in our vocabulary



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 07/13/2022 12:54 PM
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michaelbeijer
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@jrp3:

Hi there! In terms of what kinds of things I would love to see Voice Access be able to do, please have a look at this amazing little program: https://www.voicemacro.net/

I own a licence for the latest version of Dragon (which I don't use), and have played around with every dictation solution available on Windows (Dragon, WSR, Kaldi, etc.), as well as every voice command/scripting tool (KnowBrainer, Vocola/Unimacro, Talon, Caster/Dragonfly, AutoHotkey, VoiceMacro, etc.), and currently use VoiceMacro in my daily work as a patent translator. It's surprisingly powerful. I use it mainly for commands (to do stuff in my translation software), but also use it for occasional dictation (which I can also start by voice). However, it uses the old-school WSR engine, so is not great at dictating flowing text. I'm hoping the developer of VoiceMacro switches to the new Windows 11 Voice Access dictation technology (if possible), to make it even better. But in terms of what kind of things I would love to see Voice Access do, VoiceMacro pretty much nailed it.

Michael   



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 02/07/2022 04:47 AM
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Mphillipson
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After playing with Windows 11 for 1 1/2 days I've discovered the following in the UK version:

SendDragonKeys does not work in advanced scripting (most of my commands in KnowBrainer so I did not notice this at 1st)
Voice typing currently does not accept any dictation commands other than stop dictating (apparently this is USA only at the moment)


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Thanks Mark


 


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 02/20/2022 08:50 AM
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Mphillipson
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I've just had a Windows 11 update which introduced Notepad with Dark Mode.

However, Dragon does not appear to work correctly with it. When selecting words they appear to be off by 2 characters.

As per the attached:

https://youtu.be/8Idv-53syzo



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Thanks Mark


 


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 02/20/2022 09:08 AM
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tchirambaguwa
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I discovered that my Notepad is not functioning well as well .

It behaves exactly as yours 

In addition :

-Some dictation meant to be in a new line goes into the same previous line as it it were a continuation.

-New lines are not correctly capitalised and they start a tab or 2 inwards as if they are indented

I am dissapointed as I like Notepad a lot for doing my dictations

 

 

 02/20/2022 01:05 PM
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dilligence
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Same here. This is what I get in the latest Notepad (11.2112.32.0) version:

 

"New Line" voice command has become unreliable. 

 

Notepad is throwing in unnecessary initial and trailing spaces all the time (sometimes even spontaneously trims the spaces).

 

It frequently does not capitalize the first word of the sentence. 

 

Dictating "." gives erratic behavior. 

 

It sometimes spontaneously inserts random letters in my dictation.

 

The system menu is not responding well to maximizing and minimizing and or "click close" command.   



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 03/31/2022 03:51 PM
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Tiger Feet
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I have been away too long…

Hmm – interesting – could this be the start of a new love affair, I ask myself.

Having said that, I’m still on Windows 10, just biding my time – hoping they will be able to perfect Windows 11 over time.  Who knows what the future is for WSR but at least it is moving from the Middle Ages.

Cheers



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 07/15/2022 06:12 PM
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michaelbeijer
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I'm currently testing it again, after joining the Insider Beta channel. Select 'n Say functionality, or whatever it's called in Voice Access works nicely in e.g. Notepad and Word, but not (yet?) in my translation software, such as memoQ and Trados Studio. Does anyone have any idea if they will add more apps to the list with select X/Y/Z functionality?

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 07/15/2022 06:14 PM
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Lunis Orcutt
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Like Dragon, which Microsoft now owns, we very much doubt that memoQ or Trados Studio will become Dragon friendly anytime soon.

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 07/15/2022 07:09 PM
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Lunis Orcutt
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Actually...we are looking at the possibility of eliminating the need for any Dictation Box. It's tricky and there is no guarantee but we believe it might be possible to not only make Dragon work everywhere but additionally acquire perfect spacing and capitalization. In other words, we are working on making all applications Dragon friendly. If we are successful, the only thing you won't be able to do is select text by voice. Many end-users don't even know this capability exists. And... If we can get it to work with Dragon, it won't be much of a reach to do it in Voice Access. Bear in mind that this is all vaporware and won't happen anytime soon, if it at all

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 07/28/2022 03:38 AM
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Mphillipson
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Re: Voice Access on Windows 11, here's a video some forum members may find interesting:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SEmZBYvXQbY

https://sway.office.com/Q5JvoIGBI5glyoKw



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Thanks Mark


 


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Video Examples of Coding by Voice



 08/28/2022 02:21 PM
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Superman711
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is voice access better than Dragon NaturallySpeaking?
 08/28/2022 06:32 PM
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Lunis Orcutt
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Consider this:

 

1. Microsoft is finalizing Voice Access for the next major Windows 11 November update (ETA)

2. Microsoft owns Nuance; a.k.a. Dragon. Note that the name “NaturallySpeaking” was discontinued 8 years ago. The scuttlebutt is that Nuance lost the rights to the name in a lawsuit that we were never able to verify  

3. Voice Access is nearly out-of-the-box accurate as Dragon

Now ask yourself why would Microsoft purchase Nuance, for 3 times its value, and freely give away a competing speech recognition utility? Sounds like the left hand doesn't know what the right hand is doing but it does  The real answer is a bit more in depth but Microsoft's primary interest is in cloud versions of Dragon and Dragon Medical

Our best explanation would be to compare Voice Access to the Dragon Home Edition. Both utilities are out-of-the-box accurate and include a healthy built-in command collection. Voice Access even goes a step further by including a numbering technology which was designed to assist end-users with physical disabilities. iPhone users already have this capability. Rumor has it that the next Dragon release will also include numbering technology. Don't be surprised if the Home Edition disappears when Ver. 16 comes out because, in our opinion, anyone considering purchasing the Dragon Home Edition should just save their moolah and download Voice Access. Finally, those who cannot budget other editions of Dragon, won't have to.

Of course, if you need speech recognition for anything other than very light use, you're not going to be happy with the Dragon Home Edition or Voice Access. You might think you can get along without a vocabulary editor or the ability to create commands but you will find out soon enough. For beginners, you are not going to have the ability to construct a personal command like Insert Signature. You will not be able to add the word or train “KnowBrainer” to your personal vocabulary and that's just the tip of the iceberg.

In our opinion, comparing Voice Access and Home Edition to DPI 15 is equivalent to comparing the features of Notepad to Microsoft Word or the ethics of a politician to a priest.



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 08/28/2022 11:26 PM
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MDH
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"...  is equivalent to comparing the features of Notepad to Microsoft Word or the ethics of a politician to a priest."

 

Lunis, 

 

I suggest that you watch this Oscar winning Best Picture movie:

 

https://www.amazon.com/Spotlight-Mark-Ruffalo/dp/B01AZ7T0MG

 

Per one review (Spotlight (2015) - IMDb):

 "The true story of how the Boston Globe uncovered the massive scandal of child molestation and cover-up within the local Catholic Archdiocese, shaking the entire Catholic Church to its core."

 

You may conclude that the ethics of both have a higher frequency of lack of ethics than is ideal.

 

MDH


 



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 08/29/2022 12:42 PM
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Lunis Orcutt
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Oops MDH, I stand corrected

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 08/29/2022 10:25 PM
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kkkwj
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@jrp3, I hope that there is a public developer API under the new Voice Access features. I have some programs that rely on the Windows Speech Library APIs and don't want them to disappear when Voice Access comes out!

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