Thursday, October 23, 2008

Two Finger Typist

Hi folks,

If your considering writing articles or perhaps even your own eBook to one day publish, only your like me a "two finger typist", then I may have an answer for you.

I've been around computers since the days of the VIC20, that's a long time even in dog years. The only problem is I never learned data entry or typing and hence I'm still a "two finger typist". Its not terribly bad, I can still type pretty quick but I do have to watch those two fingers while they are doing they're thing.

Recently, I began helping my wife with a great undertaking, she wants to publish a cook book she wrote for both hard cover sales and now she would also like an eBook version of the same book to have published online. Only problem is she is a one finger typist and I'm a two finger typist so you can imagine how long it took to write the hard cover version? Anyways, with the book finally nearing completion, I gave my head a shake and the cobwebs that were clouding my creative thought fell away. And low and behold what popped into my head, I was thinking about the text-to-speech programs available for PCs. I thought to myself wait a minute, if someone wrote a program so you could type and the computer would speak it back to you, wouldn't it be cool if you could speak and the computer would write it down for you. I thought NAH, isn't going to happen. I was WRONG!

Pleasantly wrong I might add. I did a little googling one night and there they were such programs as Dragon - Naturally Speaking at or Express Dictate at just to mention a few. You can search more out and some are free while others cost from a few dollars up to allot more dollars.

Anyways, what a joy to find the software I chose would give my two fingers a rest. All I had to do was put on my Mic headset or hold a Mic in front of me while I read in normal speed speech, my wife's transcript. The computer kept right up with me and only made a few small errors which could be corrected quickly. Can you imagine my happiness though? No typing (period). We (my wife and I) projected perhaps 6-9 months to digitize her book, all 900+ pages of delicious recipes handed down from her family for eons. Now, we're looking at perhaps 1 1/2 to 2 months to dictate the book into the computer where I'll work my eBook magic on it.

Fantastic time saver! Oh not only that, some of these programs and there are allot to choose from come with the ability to execute voice commands in your programs too, like "erase last" or "open Outlook Express". WOW, no hands computing, My wife just shook her head and said "why didn't you think to look for these programs before?" then she gave me this sheesh, what a dummy look.

Can you imagine the uses though? Articles, eBooks, Dictation, Business letters, Memos, Calendar Schedules, the list goes on and on. No more hands and spending half of your creative energies on manipulating your fingers, now you just sit with your glass of "Liebfraumilch" and let the creative juices flow!

Ah well, for some of us it takes a bit to get the brain in drive. Don't get caught doing more typing than you need to, get some speech-to-text software now! Trust me your two fingers will thank you for it.


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