This is the best feature available now on most new computers, cell phones and tablets today. I use mine all the time and it synchronizes between iPhone, iPad and android devices. It may not be available on your older computer. New equipment comes with this technology whereas before you used to have to buy a program like “Dragons Naturally Speaking”.

Essentially, I type pretty much everything by voice dictation; emails (in Gmail, Android or Apple), Google docs, Pages documents, Text messages and even Google searches when I’m particularly lazy. It is SO easy.

As a quadriplegic without finger movement, I started typing with my knuckles, then I took to using pencils with the erasers on the keys of the keyboard and rubber bands around the other ends, so they wouldn’t slip from between my fingers. However, this only works on an old physical keyboard and not on tablets or cell phones. Other than using a stylus now, voice dictation has replaced most of my typing needs, except for editing. And, by the way, your device will learn your voice and improve the accuracy the more you use it.

The YouTube video attached below walks through using voice dictation. When you touch into a document like an email or a Google doc, your keyboard will appear. There will be a key for a microphone showing on the keyboard; on my iPhone and iPad it is the 3rd key from the bottom left, although on other devices it might be at the top as shown in the video clip. As soon as you touch that, dictation will be activated and everything that your device here’s will appear as type text in the document you’re working on. In addition to the punctuation mentioned in the video clip, you can say the words like “new line”, if you have ended a sentence or paragraph. To start a new paragraph and even the word “quote” will prompt the punctuation of before or after a word or phrase.

Generally, I find it easiest to start the dictation and take my eyes off the screen to speak everything I want onto the page and not get involved in editing until I have finished a paragraph for a full thought.

Anyway, this technology is very valuable for everyone; disabled or not.

Happy dictating,

Stuart Kidd, North Bay

PS: this message was dictated.


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