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Text to speech engines, implementations or tools
Accessible BBC Listen Again
The British Broadcast Company (BBC) allows people to listen to vast quantities of their radio and TV output up to a week after it is first broadcast on one of their dozens of radio or TV stations. This service, called iPlayer, relies on a web browser interface that might be difficult for some users, especially people with screen readers. Accessible BBC iPlayer allows you to access the BBC's iPlayer content through a truly accessible interface designed to work with any screen reader. Select programmes and stations with the cursor keys and listen to them at your leisure. NOTE: Accessible BBC iPlayer is now included in the WebbIE3 installation.
Accessible Radio
Accessible Radio is a way to listen to radio stations on the internet that is easy and simple to use and is designed to work with any screen reader. NOTE: Accessible Radio is now included in the WebbIE3 installation.
Accessible RSS
Interested in keeping up with the headlines and newspapers? A new technology called RSS has recently taken the Internet by storm. Websites provide "feeds" of their latest stories and headlines, and you can get these simple lists, updated every few minutes. Accessible RSS is an accessible application that lets you access these RSS feeds. NOTE: Accessible RSS is now included in the WebbIE3 installation.
Accessible Web Directory
This simple program lets you explore the DMOZ web directory, a catalogue of good websites. NOTE: Accessible Web Directory is now included in the WebbIE3 installation.
AccessiblePodcatcher (formerly AccessiblePodcaster) is a simple way for blind and screen reader users to use podcasts. NOTE: AccessiblePodcatcher is now included in the WebbIE3 installation.
AMIS is a software program that you can use to read DAISY books. AMIS is a multilingual player for reading books complying with DAISY standards.
Big Calculator
You can either click on the buttons with the mouse or use the numeric keypad to perform calculations.
CHIP Speaking
CHIPSPEAKING is a desktop augmentative communication device that supports up to 99 messages. Users can record in their own voice (or care-givers can record the voice of someone else of the same gender and age) or take advantage of computerized voices.
CLiCk, Speak
CLiCk, Speak is an open source, freely available extension for the Firefox web browser. It is part of the CLC-4-TTS Suite of products, it features a mouse driven interface, and it reads web pages - hence its name.
Daisy Pipeline
The Daisy Multi Format Converter allows conversion of DAISY books between different formats.
DonnerLaParole is a primarily text based communicator for people with speech and physical impairments - including word prediction, text-to-speech support etc. Best support for French - cross-platform Java application.
This is a TTS (Text To Speech) program with functionality of ASR (Automatic Speech Recognition) integrated. It is able to to read aloud the written text and choose the sentences to be pronounced based upon the vocal answers of the user.
The program has an input area on the screen for entering a text or audio phrase which is to be spoken or played. With the touch of the "Enter" key or a mouse click, the text is converted to speech and sent to a voice synthesizer which conveys the message in mellifluous tones. Audio phrases are played as recorded.
EdWord and EdWeb
EdWord is a talking word processor that allows you to combine text with symbols. EdWeb is a talking web browser that can display web pages as a combination of text and symbols.
Emacspeak is a speech interface that allows visually impaired users to interact independently and efficiently with the computer.
eSpeak text to speech
eSpeak is a compact free and open source software speech synthesizer for English and other languages, for Linux and Windows.
Fire Vox
Fire Vox is an open source, freely available talking browser extension for the Firefox web browser.
A Firefox extension that speaks web pages as you browese. Uses Microsoft SAPI for speech on Windows only.
Free Speech for Android
Free Speech is a free and open source augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) program that provides a low-cost alternative to dedicated speech generating devices (SGD).
Gaze Talk
GazeTalk is a predictive text entry system that has a restricted on-screen keyboard with ambiguous layout for severely disabled people. The main reason for using such a keyboard layout is that it enables the use of an eye tracker with a low spatial resolution (e.g., a web-camera based eye tracker).
The Gnopernicus project aims to enable users with limited vision, or no vision, to use the Gnome 2 desktop and Gnome/GTK+-2 applications effectively.
Hotspots is now open source and public domain or free software. It may be used by a number of users on one computer or by one user on a number of different computers.
This software makes Linux accessible to the blind user.
MAGpie 2.01 is a tool for creating closed captions and audio (video) descriptions. Authors can add captions and audio descriptions to QuickTime, Real, or Windows Media Player.
Microsoft Reader
Microsoft Reader is used to view certain eBooks on your computer. An additional piece of software, 'Microsoft Reader Text-to-Speech Package' can be downloaded in order to speak your eBooks to you, giving you access to all manner of novels and non-fiction eBooks without the need to read them from the screen.
MyFTC - My Freedom to Communicate
My Freedom To Communicate (MyFTC) is Assistive Technology (AT) software that uses text-to-speech technology to enable nonverbal individuals to communicate easily in real life situations.
Non Visual Desktop Access
Orca is a free, open source, flexible, and extensible screen reader that provides access to the graphical desktop via user-customizable combinations of speech, braille, and/or magnification.
Plaphoons is one of the many valuable results from the Catalan Fressa project, made available under a CC-BY-NC-SA licence. It is a comprehensive tool for alternative access and AAC. Versions are available for MS Window (95 - 7), Java (GPL license) and recently for Android. Most information still only available in Catalan and Spanish.
Power Reader
A dyslexic text reader/learning tool, a graphical, interactive text reader integrated with computer text-to-speech whose level of focus, complexity, and detail is adjustable according to the user's needs.
PowerTalk automatically speaks any presentation or slide show running in Microsoft PowerPoint for Windows. You just download and install PowerTalk and while you open and run the presentation as usual it speaks the text on your slides. The advantage over other generic 'Text To Speech' programs is that PowerTalk is able to speak text as it appears and can also speak hidden text attached to images. Speech is provided by the standard synthesised computer voices that are provided with Windows. Note: The "Latest version" information here is not currently maintained. Select the external download link to Sourceforge for the latest versions!
Reads any text you see on your screen - all purpose text-to-speech software. Available in a freeware version, and a payed plus version. This is not open source.
Rockbox is an open source replacement firmware for archos mp3 players. The firmware includes many enhancements on the standard version, including audio prompts for files which can be useful for people with problems with their vision.
Sayz Me
Sayz Me is a free text-to-speech reader for Windows. Text is typed in or copied from the clipboard and then read aloud.
A screen reader using software or hardware speech synthesizer.
Speakup, written by Kirk Reiser and Andy Berdan, is a screen review package for the Linux operating system.
Special Access To Windows
Free software that enables Windows to be controlled by one or two switches, a trackerball or a headpointer. The new SAW 6 version - supported by the AEGIS project - is now available. It is fully Windows 7 compatible, supports Unicode, includes its own "Blade" word prediction and abbreviation expansion engine, can interact with the CCF-SymbolServer for graphic symbol support (, and adds several other feautures to make creating interfaces easy for those who use alternative inputs.
SymVoc is aimed to help less able people to communicate with others using symbols and speech synthesis.
Tablet PC Speech Assistant
The Tablet PC Speech Assistant is a program which runs on the Tablet PC or the more portable Ultra-Mobile PC. The software was originally built by Todd Landstad, a software engineer with years of experience with Tablet PC development. He developed the Tablet PC Speech Assistant as an aid for people who have problems speaking. The Tablet PC Speech Assistant can make it fairly easy for some people to have phrases that they often use spoken by the default voice on the Tablet PC. Given that the software require fairly good handwriting ability, and access to specific hardware, it will not be practical for some people.
Talking Notes for Powerpoint
For those with speech problems who need to talk to a Powerpoint presentation.
Thunder Screen Reader
Thunder is free screenreader talking software for blind and visually impaired people.
WebbIE makes surfing the Internet easy. It lets you read web pages as simple text, and navigate them with the arrow keys. You can easily fill in forms, hear a summary of page content and list the links, and copy and paste web page information to your own computer.
WeMedia Talking Browser
A talking browser designed for vision- and learning-impaired Web surfers.
WordAid is a lexical word listing program (as opposed to a word predictor) with text-to-speech support that can aid the development of literacy.
WordTalk is a free plug-in developed for use with all versions of Microsoft Word (from Word 97 upwards), which can help people with reading difficulties use Microsoft Word more effectively.
WWAAC Web Browser
This is a talking, keyboard, switch and mouse pointer accessible web browser with page summarising tools. It has a highly configerable user interface and was developed as part of an EU project.

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