Stephen Hawking uses SwiftKey to work smarter, faster

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Now Professor Hawking can curse autocorrect, too. Photo: The Next Web
Now Professor Hawking can curse autocorrect, too. Photo: The Next Web

Famous astrophysicist Stephen Hawking has a better way to talk now, thanks to a new custom predictive text software upgrade from SwiftKey and Intel Labs. The technology that Professor Hawking was currently using was going on 20 years old, and needed a fix to help him communicate and work faster and more efficiently.

His life-long motor neurone disease of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) has necessitated his use of communications technology, and this new system will allow him to choose words rather than individual letters, which lets him type less than 20 percent of all needed characters in his messages. It also makes him 10 times more efficient with other computing tasks like browsing the web, working with files, and switching between tasks on the computer.

Hear Siri Quote Darth Vader In All 32 Supported Languages

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Lukáš, já jsem tvůj otec.
Lukáš, já jsem tvůj otec.

Ever wanted to hear Siri declaim “Luke, I am your father” in 32 different languages?

In a blog post by the developers behind the daily Spanish word app Vocab Ninja, you can click on all of Siri’s different voices — overwhelmingly female-gendered, interestingly enough — in both standard and enhanced audio resolutions.

Use NaturalReader On Your iPhone And Get Rid Of The Awful Robot Voice [iOS Tips]

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NaturalReader

I’ve been driving a lot lately, and have been wanting to listen to ebooks on my iPHone as I do so. It’s fairly simple to turn on VoiceOver and have what sounds like Siri read my books to me, but honestly? She’s a terrible narrator. The VoiceOver voice is heavily robotic, and it’s difficult to understand what’s being read to me most of the time, so I end up giving up or contemplating purchasing an audiobook from iTunes.

But I’d really like to just continue the ebooks I already have on my iPhone while I’m driving. That way I can listen to them while in the car, but actually read them when I’m not. NaturalReader just might be part of the solution I’ve been looking for, so I figured I’d share it here with you.

Get Mac OS X Mountain Lion To Speak Text On Command [OS X Tips]

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Speak Highlighted Text

OS X has really good text to speech functionality for users with a visual or other learning disability, but it’s something that I think we all would benefit from at certain times. How about listening to a webpage when you’re folding clothes, or having your Mac your Twitter stream out loud while you do some sort of two-handed crafting project, like knitting?

Turns out, you can make this happen super easily with OS X Mountain Lion, invoking a keystroke to read highlighted text anywhere on your computer. Want to have your Mac read that Word doc your boss just sent over? This little tip will make it happen.