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Misha Nov 11, 1999 10:04 AM
Voice Recognition Woes
Has anyone had trouble with voice recognition working? It only seems to work properly 1 out of every 5 attempts for me... there's no background noise around me and I speak in my normal voice (as I recorded it)... perhaps my tempo isn't quite the same, but voice recognition should be able to register the voice anyway.

IMO the whole voice regonition technology is a bit lame... seems more like an attempt on Apple's part to give Mac users a cool little feature that PCs don't have standard and that everyone will be impressed by. It's still far simpler (and faster) for me to enter a password... not to mention that I don't have to tell everyone in a room to be quiet so I can "enter" my password.
Austin Nov 11, 1999 10:59 AM
It's been working pretty well for me, even with a fair amount of background noise. The thing I have to remember is to pause in the same places (I evidently had odd enunciation during my original recordings, and I've been too lazy to rerecord them). I have to agree with your assessment that it's more of a "showoff" feature than actually useful, although if my grape iMac DV ever shows up (AppleStore.....) I am planning on using it at home to do just that - and maybe impress a Windoze user or two.....
Eddie Nov 11, 1999 01:34 PM
I've heard that a little bit of background sound can actually help... Try a putting a fan on or something.
representa Nov 12, 1999 10:25 PM
I too have had my own woes with voice recognition. But mine are different. I installed OS 9 without a hitch. I set up my voice password, and it worked perfectly (btw, I have a rev. A iMac, fan and everything).

I had removed Norton Utilities 4 before installing (because of the conflict). I then installed NU 5, and all of the sudden my voice password did not work. I was given an error saying "built-in microphone cannot be found". I tried uninstalling NU 5, and I tried running a conflict test (all I got was that "Sound Manager" was the cause of the problem, but that's impossible because it is the latest version and is needed to use the voice log in. All my other speech software is up-to-date (installed with Mac OS 9, of course).

I tried starting up with just the stuff needed for Multiple Users and Voice recognition, but I got the same error. I also tried re-installing just Speech Recognition from the Mac OS 9 CD.

I am wondering if anyone has any ideas on how to fix this. I was planning on getting an external mike, could this fix the problem? Any suggestions on which mike to get?


[This message has been edited by representa (edited 11-12-1999).]
Don Foy Nov 13, 1999 12:09 AM

What may have happened is that you don't have the correct version of speech recognition, and that has been reported to cause this. Did you do a clean install or install over another system? I ask because OS9 does not, by default, update the Speech Recognition control panel and extensions. The correct version of the Speech control panel is 2.0.2. The correct version the Speech Recognition extension is 2.0.1.

To get the current version, just do a custom install of OS 9 and select only the Speech Recognition option.

Hope this helps.
Misha Nov 13, 1999 10:57 AM
Although rather unrelated, I had a similar problem with my PowerBook G3/400. I wanted to use AOL Instant Messenger's "Talk" feature but when I went to select the built-in mic on the PowerBook in the Sound control panel, my options were greyed out.

I believe this was because I had just watched a DVD which can cause it to "stick" to that setting... I'm not sure.

In any case, a Restart fixed that problem. Check your Sound control panel, perhaps the settings some how were changed.

Misha Sakellaropoulo
Senior Editor, MacNN
iMac2Day, iBook2Day
representa Nov 13, 1999 02:13 PM
I did a clean install and merged the system folders (by hand to be safe). Speech recognition is up-to-date.

The strange thing is that it worked before I installed Norton Utilities 5, and then it stopped working. And it doesn't work if I remove NU 5. And it stopped working precisely when I installed NU 5. That's what doesn't make sense.
representa Nov 14, 1999 05:04 PM
I've decided to stop being lazy and do a clean install and manually transfer third-party extensions in order to try and solve the problem.
imacman11 Nov 14, 1999 05:17 PM
Ive got a question:

Where can I get an apple (or apple compatible) microphone? My friend got one with his grape iMac and another got one with his G3. (Its cool too since it is ice-translucent). You can't find them anywhere in the apple store and I cant find them on an online retailer. Voice recognition does so much better with an external mic.

wlonh Nov 14, 1999 05:43 PM
check this one out:
(scroll down a bit at above page to view mic)

and see hear here:

and this:

and out of stock, but keep an eye:
"I saw that you had a note on the clear (translucent) PlainTalk microphones for the G3/G4 Macs. Sun Remarketing sells them as well, and they have some in stock today." well, not TODAY:
wlonh Nov 15, 1999 06:36 PM
FROM MacNN News page TODAY:

At Comdex today, VXI Corp. introduced its new iParrott line of precision headset systems with microphones that patent-pending Translator Technology for a speech distortion rate that is "five times lower than competing headsets:" the $60 iParrott MultiMedia 10-3 headset and the $70 iParrott MultiMedia ST Stereo headset are available in Blueberry, and should be available in other colors shortly.
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