Since Speech Recognition debuted on Microsoft’s Windows OS, eager users have been looking forward to a feature that lets them dictate their desired text to a computer which writes it down, with all punctuation marks. These users will be glad to know about Microsoft Dictate, a Microsoft Garage project that lets you tell a computer what to write.
The feature has been developed for Microsoft Office and is supported for Word, PowerPoint and Outlook as of now. Dictate uses the Bing Speech API, which is also used by Cortana, to recognise human voice and convert it into text. It also makes it possible to create custom command lines for catering to individual preferences, i.e. you can create a command line such as “stop dictation” or “add comma”.
If you don’t speak English, then you are in for a treat. Dictate uses Microsoft Translator to understand 20 languages and translate them to 60 more in real time. Therefore, you can speak in Hindi and Dictate will automatically convert the statement into a meaningful sentence, complete with punctuation marks.
Microsoft says that “For many of us, typing takes up a lot of time. Every day, you’re writing emails, drafting documents, sending instant messages and creating presentations. Initially built as a prototype during an annual Microsoft Hackathon, the project quickly grew its fan base with more than 1,500 employees in more than 40 countries.”
The current release of Dictate is the first public release, with possibilities of bugs and errors. Users also need to have Windows 8.1 or later, Office 2013 or later and.NET Framework 4.5.0 or later. It will be compatible with both 32-bit and 64-bit versions of Windows.