What I Thought About Dragon NaturallySpeaking
Easy to install?
Personally, I didn't find anything about the installation process to be difficult or awkward. After the software installed, I had to train Dragon NaturallySpeaking to become accustomed to my voice. Basically, this entails reading several paragraphs while the software "learns" my voice, vernacular and so forth.
Once installed, the software is very easy to use, you simply load up the software and press a button to start dictating.
There are also some voice commands you can use to put the software to sleep if you need to pause for any reason. There's a lot of other commands and automated macros, however, I only really use this software for dictation purposes.
Good Value For Money?
For me, I would say that this software has been excellent value for money.
Has saved me from repetitive strain injury or further issues with my joints.
Has helped to stop potential problems with my posture and back from sitting in a chair and/or slouching over a keyboard.
Has saved me hours every day because I find it much easier to keep the writing and editing processes separate.
Alternatives to Dragon NaturallySpeaking?
I've done a bit of searching around, however, I've yet to find any software that really compares to Dragon NaturallySpeaking. The only real alternatives to Dragon NaturallySpeaking at the moment would be future versions of Dragon Naturally Speaking. If any readers have any experience with other comparable speech to text software’s, please feel free to share your experiences so I can give them a go.
Pros and Cons
Learns how you speak and in my case, has become much more accurate with prolonged use
Can be taught new words
Has helped me prevent joint issues, since I can dictate instead typing all day
Makes it easier to get my ideas out quickly and succinctly
Helps me keep the writing and editing process separate
Can be inaccurate for those who tend to slur words
Occasionally misinterprets words that sound like similar words / hynonyms
Can be hard to get clear dictations in noisy environments
Can be a memory-intensive programme, requires a decent computer to run smoothly
Is it 100% accurate? Not for me, no. Nevertheless, I don't claim to type with 100% accuracy either. In fact, considering I can whip up a half decent article in 10 minutes with Dragon, I'd struggle to match the accuracy via typing that same article in 10 minutes. It has had difficulties in the past when I've used a cheap microphone for dictation, but with a half-decent microphone, it's highly accurate for me.
I've read a few reviews from people moaning about how the software can misinterpret similar sounding words, as well as issues with homonyms and so forth. These are all fair criticisms; however as sophisticated as Dragon NaturallySpeaking is, if people can mishear similar sounding words in conversation then it's a little unreasonable to expect software to be much better! It's likely to make mistakes as demonstrated in this video here, however, the more often I used the software, the more accurate it became.
Here's the dragon transcription from the video
“Hello there, in this video I'm going to demonstrate Dragon NaturallySpeaking version number 10 in action. After I finish the video, I will copy and paste the text here into the description box and you can see how accurate it was or wasn't as the case may be.
Now keep in mind, though occasionally slur my words, I have a bit of an accent am not exactly using the best quality microphone sought to be fair to the software. Many of the inaccuracies will probably be owed in part to those reasons.
Now, I use Dragon NaturallySpeaking to create blog articles. I find it helps to keep the ideas or get the ideas out of my head and onto a notepad file quickly in the past I used to struggle with perfectionism and keeping the writing and editing process as separate. So all this software has helped me you get the raw information onto the pitch first. From that point, I can edit the text into a readable article.
Saul, yeah, that's all I can think to say about this software at the moment. I will be creating an in-depth review of Dragon NaturallySpeaking soon and once I finish the review. I will put the link in the description box here if you want to take a look also or I hope to be getting my hands on the latest version of Dragon NaturallySpeaking shortly saw I'll create a comparison video to show the differences in the accuracy and features etc.“
Comparison of Dragon Naturally Speaking 10 and 12
The video above is a demonstration of Dragon NaturallySpeaking version 10. In this video I'm demonstrating Dragon NaturallySpeaking version 12. I'm using the exact same microphone and repeating the same body of text.
Here's the dragon transcription from the video to compare accuracy
“Hello there, in this video I’m going to demonstrate Dragon NaturallySpeaking version 12 in action. After I finish the video, I will copy and paste the text here into the description box and you can see how accurate it was or wasn’t as the case may be.
Now keep in mind that I occasionally slur my words I have a bit of an accent and I’m not exactly using the best quality microphone. So to be fair to the software. Many of the inaccuracies will probably be awed in part to those reasons.
Now, I use Dragon NaturallySpeaking to create blog articles. I find it helps to get the ideas out of my head and onto a notepad file quickly in the past I used to struggle with perfectionism and keeping the writing and editing process as separate. Saw this software has helped me to get the raw information onto the pitch first. From that point, I can edit the text into a readable article.
So yeah, that’s all I can think to say about this software at the moment. I will be creating an in-depth review of Dragon NaturallySpeaking soon and once I finish the review I will put the link in the description box here if you want to take a look.“
From this simple test, it would appear Dragon NaturallySpeaking version 12 is a lot more accurate. It's still not perfect as you can see, but It's done a great job. The auto punctuation feature isn't great in my experience, however, ordinarily I would say "comma" and "full stop" and punctuate the article myself.
Microphones Recommended For Dragon NaturallySpeaking
I use the Logitech USB Desktop Microphone
However, this is only because I've owned the microphone for a long time and like using it (it's probably not the best microphone for speech to text dictation). I'm currently searching for a good headset (wireless if possible), that feels comfortable even after hours of use. So far I've not had much luck, but if anybody has any recommendations I'm all ears!
From a practical standpoint, I highly recommend using one of the latest versions of Dragon NaturallySpeaking. The differences in accuracy between Dragon NaturallySpeaking 10 and 12 are noticable, as you can probably tell from the videos above.
I use this software almost exclusively for writing articles to publish on the web, and having the ability to comfortably dictate without slouching over a keyboard is a godsend for me. Putting all of the issues with posture, repetitive strain and back pain aside. Just having a piece of software that helps me keep the writing and editing processes separate is amazing. When using a keyboard, I can't help but edit every line as I go. Using speech to text to create a rough article first, so I can edit it later has been absolutely invaluable.