Tips, tricks, issues/questions VoiceComputer 12

Why use VoiceComputer

First, all third-party applications that work with Dragon NaturallySpeaking have their pros and cons. For example, whether you're using KnowBrainer, ShowNumbers Plus!, Vocola/Natlink/NatPython, VoiceComputer 12, or any other third party add-in or add-on, not everyone uses all the features and capabilities of any of these. In some cases it depends upon your skill and knowledge of scripting and/or programming. In other words, we only use those features and capabilities that apply to our unique situation and needs or based on our level of knowledge and understanding. The human brain is not capable of memorizing or remembering thousands of scripts, features, or commands. Does that make any of these third-party applications less useful? Certainly not. It does however, present a quandary to those who are trying to figure out whether or not one of these third-party applications is useful for their needs by virtue of the number of commands or features in all of these.

Second, the old saying "One person's trash is another person's treasure" is no less true of any of the third-party applications available for use with Dragon NaturallySpeaking. The value of any third party application rests in the needs of the user vs. the capabilities of the application.

Third, what makes VoiceComputer different lies in the fact that it is complete, easy to use, comprehensive, makes Dragon NaturallySpeaking virtually 100% hands-free, and contains features that: (a) require no programming experience, and (b) cover a broader range of capabilities than any of the other third-party applications compatible with Dragon NaturallySpeaking. In other words, it is unique.

In addition, VoiceComputer works identically in both Dragon NaturallySpeaking and Windows Speech Recognition (WSR); something that no other third party application does without running a different format or application version. Whether you're using Dragon NaturallySpeaking or Windows Speech Recognition (WSR) the features and functions are exactly the same and require no additional learning. Further, it's just a simple matter of switching between Dragon and Windows Speech Recognition (WSR). No additional learning is necessary and you can have both Dragon and Windows Speech Recognition (WSR) open simultaneously, with the only requirement that you switch between versions of VoiceComputer, a simple process which is easily automated.

Another issue is what do you do when you need technical support or help on a particular problem? Do you call Nuance technical support? That's a rhetorical question, the answer to which is something that I think every user knows. Do you post the problem and ask for help on one of the forums? How long do you have to wait for an answer and what happens if you need an answer now?

VoiceComputer contains a complete, totally interactive help system on virtually all issues related to Dragon NaturallySpeaking, as well as using VoiceComputer, that you can pull up side-by-side with whatever it is that you're currently working on, or application that you're working in, and answers questions and/or provides demos and tutorials, as well as lessons. If you need help on ANY topic, all you have to do is to ask for it in a natural manner in much the same way that you would pose the same question to a trainer or technical support person. The only problem with this is that it keeps us at VoiceTeach on our toes to make sure that all of these interactive help screens and information is completely up to date. In addition, any user of VoiceComputer who discovers a problem or the need to update any particular information in our interactive help system can ask and we will fix it, amend it, or add it as quickly as possible. Sometimes we can do this virtually immediately, and sometimes it can take us a few days. Nevertheless, we update VoiceComputer as often and as frequently as possible, necessary, or based on user needs and requests. Regardless, if you need help, with VoiceComputer you can get it immediately, instead of having to wait for a "trainer", technical support , or an answer from one of the forums. In addition, we try as best we can to keep our forum (VoiceComputer) up to date and answer your questions ASAP, usually almost immediately.

Lastly, many of the features of VoiceComputer are patented and things that you won't find in any other third party application. VoiceComputer is perfectly compatible with KnowBrainer. However, it is not compatible with Vocola et al. Unlike KnowBrainer, VoiceComputer is not a scripting language. All the commands and features in VoiceComputer are available immediately as soon as you install it and configure it. In addition, we provide you with a very simple, straightforward, and comprehensive manner of creating VoiceShortcuts, which is different than scripting because it only takes two steps. All you have to do is to give it a command name and enter a single command line in the wizard. It generally takes about 10 to 30 seconds to create and/or modify a VoiceShortcut. And, you can easily add any new ones that you need or delete those that you no longer need or use. VoiceComputer gives you simple flexibility to make it work the way you need it to work and find the things that you need to learn and/or understand quickly and easily, when you need it, the it's two o'clock in the afternoon or three o'clock in the morning. VoiceComputer never sleeps.

Many years ago when I was Technical Product Manager and SDK Project Manager for Dragon NaturallySpeaking, one of my main functions was to go all over the country, Asia, and Europe, giving demonstrations. Because I used it virtually 100% of the time trying to stay away from the mouse and keyboard, I got to the point where I couldn't work without it. Now having been the Technical Project manager for VoiceComputer for the last several years, I've arrived at the same point. Working without VoiceComputer (i.e., with Dragon NaturallySpeaking alone) is like pulling a 10 ton load up a 60° incline with a bicycle. Using Dragon without VoiceComputer is the most frustrating thing that I can possibly conceive of. I'm not only the VoiceTeach Technical Project Manager, I'm also a client. From my own personal perspective, I find it too frustrating and time-consuming to work without it.

So, why use VoiceComputer? Simply put, if you don't, you're working harder, not smarter. VoiceComputer will increase your productivity by 50% or more. It will give you more time to do more of the things that you need to do so that you have more time to do the things you want to do. Yes, I'm tooting my own horn so to speak, but I can tell you from personal experience and use that I can get done in eight hours with Dragon and VoiceComputer what would normally take me 12 to 16 hours with Dragon alone.

Nevertheless, you don't have to take my word for it, look at what other VoiceComputer users on this forum are saying. If you're still not convinced, get a full working trial version and see for yourself. You'll wonder what you ever did without it, and you can take that to the bank.

The collection of threads in this topic are designed to answer questions and discuss topics related to VoiceComputer that current users should find useful. However, that's not the only purpose. We also want those who are visiting the forum who are not using VoiceComputer to understand what it can do for them. Please feel free to ask questions about specific topics and/or issues as we go along. I will be glad to respond and/or answer any posts. Even if you're not using VoiceComputer, feel free to register and join the forum so that you can ask questions and get our answers and responses. I will be adding to this topic every day.

Chucker2012-12-19 07:04:12

I am attaching this to the Dragon NaturallySpeaking folder on the KnowBrainer forum. I consider it my Christmas gift to everyone who does not have VoiceComputer.

Hopefully, the recipients will at least acknowledge my thoughtfulness.

Happy holidays,

Jim

Chucker:

In my interpreting the below correct that you can have both VoiceComputer’s and Dragon NaturallySpeaking’s help windows open side-by-side?

"totally interactive help system on virtually all issues related to Dragon NaturallySpeaking, as well as using VoiceComputer, that you can pull up side-by-side with whatever it is that you’re currently working on, or application that you’re working in,"

Or are you saying that VoiceComputer’s or Dragon’s help feature can be open side-by-side with the program you are in seeking help?

Happy holidays,

Jim

Jim,

No, VoiceComputer contains the interactive help for both Dragon NaturallySpeaking and VoiceComputer. Dragon’s Help is a standard help application and can be put up side-by-side with whatever you’re working on using VoiceComputer, but it is neither interactive nor can you have both Dragon’s help and VoiceComputer’s side-by-side with whatever you’re working on.

I’m not sure why you would want to do that.

Chuck,

Thank you for the great post on tips in tricks.



I am hoping you can help me figure out how to use WSR and VoicePower with Dragon simultaneously as well as how to switch between them automatically. I thought it was possible to do it but have been unable to figure out how. I would like to be as hands free as possible and am hoping that I can start VoicePower from WSR and open Dragon with speech rather than clicking on the VoicePower icon in the task bar.

VoiceComputer is my favorite program and I would not run Dragon without it.

Thank you to you and Ron for all of that you do for us.

Jeff

I thought it was possible to do it but have been unable to figure out how.

It’s not but I’m quite certain that I could write a script that would allow you to do this.
May I ask, why not just use Dragon, since you have it?
FYI, I just haven’t been able to keep the WSR documentation up to date. All the Dragon commands that we have also work with WSR but our out-of-date documentation doesn’t reflect that.
We’ve been tempted to improve WSR’s correction and other shortcomings but I’ve always been concerned that if we spent a few months working on this, Microsoft would announce an update to WSR that would make everything we had just worked on obsolete.

Jeff,

Let me clarify what Ron is saying relative to your question about running Windows Speech Recognition (WSR) and Dragon simultaneously.

First, the reason that you can’t run Dragon NaturallySpeaking and Windows Speech Recognition (WSR) simultaneously is not because it’s not possible, it’s because if you do: (a) you have to turn the microphone off on one before you use the other, and (b) if you leave the microphone on for both Dragon NaturallySpeaking and Windows Speech Recognition (WSR) at the same time, you will get double dictation. They will run simultaneously with no conflict, but whatever you dictate will be transcribed twice.

Second, VoiceComputer can only be linked and operational with either Windows Speech Recognition (WSR) or Dragon NaturallySpeaking. VoiceComputer cannot be run simultaneously for both in the same manner as both Dragon and Windows Speech Recognition (WSR) can be. When you want to switch from VoiceComputer for Dragon to VoiceComputer for Windows Speech Recognition (WSR), or vice versa, you have to reconfigure VoiceComputer to work with one or the other depending upon the one that you’re currently using or working with. It will not work simultaneously for both at the same time. It’s not that we would love to do it, it’s primarily because Dragon NaturallySpeaking uses SAPI 4 and Windows Speech Recognition (WSR) uses SAPI 5. Therefore, because VoicePower is not integrated into the operating system the same way that Windows Speech Recognition (WSR) is, we have to make the swap between SAPI 4 and SAPI 5 when implementing VoiceComputer. We can’t engage both simultaneously. It’s not a limitation of VoiceComputer, it’s a limitation of SAPI.

Lastly, switching back and forth between VoiceComputer for Dragon NaturallySpeaking or Windows Speech Recognition (WSR) can be done, but it takes a little bit of finagling. If you have to work hands-free and you’re using Dragon NaturallySpeaking Premium, it’s a little bit more involved. However, as Ron indicated, we could write a command (script) for that for those that need it. I will explain how you can do this currently and manually (by keyboard or voice) in a subsequent thread.

<edited><editID>Chucker</editID><editDate>2012-12-20 01:41:18</editDate></edited>

Ron and Chuck,

Thank you for your great explanations. My only goal was to be as hands free as possible. My thought was that if I started the computer and it activated WSR and I could use my voice (instead of clicking on the VoiceComputer icon in the task bar) to activate VoiceComputer and Dragon then shut off WSR (again with my voice) it would be as hands free as possible. Then I could work in Dragon until it was time to shut off the computer.
I have experienced the double dictation problem in the past, recognized what was happening, and could not find the solution.At that point I just quit using WSR.
I use the 64 bit versions of windows 7, Dragon 12 Legal and VoiceComputer. i7 sandy bridge 2600 @3.40GHz, 8 GB Ram
Thanks again for everything you do for us!
Jeff

Jeff,

It isn’t necessary to go to that extreme to automatically start VoiceComputer and Dragon. To do that automatically, do the following:

Copy the VoiceComputer shortcut (icon) on your desktop to the Startup folder (Windows). From that point forward VoiceComputer will always launch and automatically load Dragon (your most current user profile) when Windows boots up. You won’t even need to touch it.

There is one caveat and you should let us know if you run into it. That is, if you have anything else that’s loading from your Startup folder and it needs to complete its loading process first, then either Dragon or VoiceComputer may not launch properly. However, this is rare, but if this occurs, you can simplify the process by just launching Dragon NaturallySpeaking from the Startup folder. However, if you need to do that (i.e., you have a problem with automatically starting VoiceComputer/Dragon from the Startup folder), let me know so that I can explain to you how to do that properly. The only reason that I point this out is that if you make a mistake the Dragon shortcut (icon), it won’t work. Nevertheless, under this condition, particularly with Windows 7 and/or Windows 8, you should be able to just copy the Dragon shortcut to your Windows Startup folder, particularly if you only have one user profile if you have more than one user profile you’ll have to edit the shortcut in the Windows Startup folder to make sure that the user profile that you want to load is the one that Dragon loads. Nevertheless, if you have a problem, please let me know first and please be detailed in terms of what the problem is.Chucker2012-12-20 13:22:13

Here are a couple of quick tips for anyone using VoiceComputer.

1. There’ve been a number of posts regarding how to select both a sequential list, such as a specific sequential list of e-mails in Microsoft Outlook, or a list of files or folders in Windows Explorer. While you can write a script to do this in the Professional versions (Advanced Scripting), these commands are built into VoiceComputer making this unnecessary for users of VoiceComputer and, in addition, making them accessible to anyone using DNS Premium (DNS 11-11.5 and DNS 12) or Preferred (DNS 10.1).

2. The same applies to selecting individual items in a list.

As long as VoiceComputer is loaded, you can simply say either “shift click” or “control click”. “Shift click” will select a sequential list once you have highlighted the first item and then move the mouse to the last item in a sequential list which you wish to select. “control click” allows you to highlight and select nonsequential items in a list. What these commands do is to press and hold the Shift key or the Ctrl key while left clicking the mouse. In short, they function the same as manually pressing (on the keyboard) and holding down either the Shift or the Ctrl keys and manually left clicking with the mouse.

3. For those who are moving to, or interested in moving to, Windows 8, some of the Advanced Scripting methods for performing the above functions will cause Windows 8 to crash (BSOD - Blue Screen of Death). This does not happen with the equivalent commands in VoiceComputer.

4. Anyone who is experiencing any significant latency using VoiceComputer 12 and BestMatch V (DNS 12) can eliminate such by creating a BestMatch IV user profile. How much latency you may be experiencing is primarily hardware-based (CPU make, model, speed, version of Windows, amount of RAM) and largely due to the way that BestMatch V handles commands. I’ve been experimenting with clients under these conditions by switching them over to BestMatch IV General-Large vocabulary. What I found is that, over time, the difference in accuracy between BestMatch V and BestMatch IV becomes insignificant as Dragon learns from your ongoing dictation, corrections, training, etc. The trade-off is that BestMatch IV on DNS 12 generally performs as quickly and efficiently as was the case with DNS 10.1.

Chuck,

<p>1000 thank you's.<font face="Arial"> The shift click and control click is exactly what I need. I use the getting things done for Outlook add in which requires me to choose email messages and take action. For example, I would choose the first and the fourth email message in my inbox and create a new task. That command really helps me a lot.</font></p><font face="Arial"></font>

[QUOTE=Chucker]
2. The same applies to selecting individual items in a list.

As long as VoiceComputer is loaded, you can simply say either "shift click" or "control click". "Shift click" will select a sequential list once you have highlighted the first item and then move the mouse to the last item in a sequential list which you wish to select. "control click" allows you to highlight and select nonsequential items in a list. What these commands do is to press and hold the Shift key or the Ctrl key while left clicking the mouse. In short, they function the same as manually pressing (on the keyboard) and holding down either the Shift or the Ctrl keys and manually left clicking with the mouse. [/QUOTE] <?: prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office" />

I like the display numbers facility a lot, but neither “shift click” nor “control click” work at all in Windows Explorer. Am I correct in thinking that I say “display numbers” and then “shift click 58” to select the item numbered 58, and then select the other number I wish to be the last in the selection? When I do that I get the message “Unknown text field. Consider using ‘show dictation box’-see help”, and “control click” results in the message “Unable to show changed selection” being displayed.

This also occurs if I reboot the computer and try again with no other programs open, except for Windows Explorer.

Viv.

Windows 7 Pro 64 bit, Office 2010 32 bit. <?: prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office" />

Asus Sabertooth 990FX R2.0 with AMD FX - 8150 Eight Core Processor and 16Gb memory.

Dragon 12 Premium, Voice Computer VC64-12-25-4-1.

PS, I decided to download 12-25-5 as I noticed that the 'shift click' and 'control click' commands were not included in the display numbers xml file as I assumed that this would resolve the problem, but it seems to be the same version of this file, dated 11/11/2012.
Viv
k00651262013-01-08 10:07:08



Viv,

Sorry if you got confused along the way. Display numbers & shift click/control click are mutually exclusive functions. That is, you can’t combine them. You either use one or the other.

For example, in Windows Explorer if you use Display numbers, you can use any of the display numbers commands to open, follow, or execute a mouse action on any of the numbered items. That is, you can say “double-click 58”, “click 58”, “right-click 58”, “follow 58”, etc. However, neither shift click nor control click will work with Display numbers. However, if you’re in Windows Explorer and you highlighted a selection, such as the first folder or first file in the list and then move the mouse pointer over the last folder or last file that you wish to select then you can say “shift click” and it will highlight all of those items between the two folders or files. Once you see the ones that are highlighted, then you can perform any legitimate action on the selection. “control click” selects individual items over which you have positioned the mouse pointer.

However, you can’t use them both together. If you keep this in mind when using either feature, you’ll find that both work as they should anywhere that they are valid.

Chuck,


I now understand how ‘shift click’ works, and how to use “control click” to select two non-consecutive items in a list. Am I right in thinking that it is not possible to select three non-concession items in a list at the same time?

Viv

Viv,

Basically, you can select any number of nonsequential (i.e., non-contiguous) items that you want using “control click”. To do this you highlight the first item in a list. Then go to the next item that you want to highlight and say “control click”. You can do this for any number of nonsequential items. All you have to do is to continue highlighting and saying “control click”. This is the entire purpose of “control click”. If it only allowed you to select one item in addition to the first highlighted item in the list, it wouldn’t be very practical.

Try it out. Click on the first item that you want to select then move the mouse pointer to the next item and say “control click”, then move it to the next item and say “control click”. Continue until you have all the nonsequential items you want to include selected. If you do it correctly, you’ll see what I mean.

Chuck,

I am having a challenge getting control – click to work consistently. Is anyone else having the same problem? Are you saying to highlight one message then say control click and then go and highlight a second message somewhere in my inbox? I can’t get it to work. Am I doing something wrong?

I think I solved my own problem. I highlight one message and then highlight a second message by saying control click. Then, I highlight a third message by saying control click again. So for every message, you need to say control click. Is that the most efficient way to do it?

Gary,

“control click” and “shift click” are basically just voice commands to do what you use to do with the mouse. In other words, they perform the same function that you would do manually by holding down the Ctrl key or the Shift key while left clicking the mouse.

Using the “Shift click” is for the purpose of selecting a contiguous list of items from the first to the last. So, for example, if you want to select all of the first 10 email messages in your inbox, you would simply highlight the first one, go to the last one and say “shift click”. Again, control click is for selecting nonsequential items in a list, such as the 1st, the 3rd, 15th, and the 20th email in your inbox list, ignoring anything in between.

Here’s another quick tip:

When dictating into the tag wizard using DNS 12, it shows that the Full Text Control (Select-and Say) checkmark is grayed out. As far as VoiceComputer is concerned, having Full Text Control (Select-and Say) in this dialog isn’t necessary because you can dictate and/or correct without having to worry about Full Text Control (Select-and Say). Therefore, if you get the Dictation Box displaying when you attempt to dictate into the “Choose a phrase” text box, this is because DNS 12 detects this as a nonstandard window.

However, if you go to the DNS Options dialog | Miscellaneous tab and remove the checkmark from the “Use the Dictation Box for unsupported applications”, you will eliminate the problem of the Dictation Box opening when dictating into VoiceComputer text boxes, and you’ll be able to dictate directly into the “Choose a phrase” box. This can also happen when using the search box in “show my documents”, “show my favorites” or any of the list command search boxes.

We don’t require Full Text Control (Select-and Say) in any of our text boxes because we handle dictation in those differently than Dragon does [i.e., we handle dictation in VoiceComputer quasi-independent of Full Text Control (Select-and Say)]. In other words, Full Text Control (Select-and Say) isn’t necessary. This allows users (i.e., you) to be able to dictate words, phrases, or spell without switching modes and without using the in-line spell command or the Spelling Window.

Regardless, there are two points to remember:

1. Because we don’t employ or require switching between modes in Dragon, we treat spelling and dictation differently. So, when you use the Dragon modes to spell into a Full Text Control (Select-and Say) window and you say “spell cap test”, VoiceComputer treats this as dictation (i.e., as an entire word). Therefore, in VoiceComputer text boxes the result is that you will get TEST vs. Test. So, it works a little differently. If you want “Test”, or any word with the first character capitalized, dictate the word by saying “cap test” rather than spell it by saying “cap t e s t”. If you make a mistake, you can always use the Dragon correction command(s).

2. Keep in mind that accuracy in spelling in VoiceComputer is dependent upon your speech model (Acoustic Model). In other words, accuracy and spelling is a Dragon issue even though VoiceComputer treats it as if you were dictating a word vs. spelling using the “spell commands” even though VoiceComputer treats such as if you were dictating and entire word or phrase. Another way of looking at it is that VoiceComputer isn’t concerned with whether or not you’re spelling a word or dictating one. it treats spelling and dictation the same (i.e., as if you were dictating everything).