Free speech-to-text options for OSX & Windows 7

Will keyboarding skills go the way of cursive writing in this decade?

One of the primary obstacles to computing for many students is input. Speech-to-text capabilities, once available only with expensive software, now comes with the latest versions of the 2 most popular consumer operating systems, Windows 7  and OSX. Directions for activating speech-to-text are outlined below:

Windows 7

  1. Open Speech Recognition by clicking the Start button > All Programs.
  2. Select Accessories > Ease of Access > Windows Speech Recognition.
  3. Click the Microphone button to start the listening mode.
  4. Open the program you want to use or select the text box you want to dictate text into.
  5. Say the text that you want dictate.

Apple OSX (10.8)

  1. Open System Preferences from the Apple menu (top left) and click the “Dictation & Speech” panel.
  2. Via the “Dictation” tab, click  “ON” next to “Dictation”
  3. In the resulting popup, select “Enable Dictation”
  4. Open any writing app or go to a text input field and double-tap the “fn” key to bring up Dictation.
  5. When little microphone popup appears, start talking.
  6. When finished, hit the “fn” key again or click the “Done” button.

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