I just made the update to Mac OS X Lion. It’s insane how much easier it is to update your operating system on an Apple than a PC. It was only $29.99 and I installed it right from the App Store on my computer. There are tons of cool new features. Especially one in particular I just stumbled upon tonight, “Text to Speech”. I’m pretty sure Macs have had this feature for a long time, I just never noticed it until now.
I was just perusing the plethora of options within the Text to Speech feature on my Mac and came across an option that allows you to have your computer “speak” whatever text you have selected, simply by pressing a simple key-combination.
- Go to System Preferences (You can get there by clicking the little black apple at the top-left of the screen)
- Click on Speech (It’s the little microphone on the bottom row)
- Inside of the “Speech” feature there are 2 tabs at the top of the box, go into the Text to Speech tab by clicking on it.
- Select the checkbox that says, “Speak selected text when the key is pressed“
- Close out of System Preferences cause you’re all set!
Quick Tip: To close out of any currently open program, press and hold “command”, and while holding, click the “Q” key (command+Q)
Now you can highlight any bit of text, press [option+esc], and the computer will read back to you whatever you have selected.
- Highlight an entire article on the web and let the computer read it for you. — Hey, why don’t you test it out on this page ;)
- Highlight your friend’s Status Updates on Facebook and let the computer read them back. You could even go back into the System Preferences and change the computer voice to female and match your friend’s gender… lol
- Open up a “Text Edit” document, write a bunch of funny stuff and make your computer read it back. For some reason this is so freaking entertaining! I have spent a good few hours writing profanities and funny sentences and making Alex (my computer voice) read them back to me.
I work in an office where everyone sits on their computers for hours at a time. I can’t wait to hook my computer up to the Bose wireless speakers and type something hilarious. Maybe something like, “My name is Murphy, I am your Bose speaker system. Karson, you are looking pretty fat today…” I think it would get some good laughs.
I’m excited to hear what cool stuff you’re able to come up with using the Text to Speech feature on the Mac. Be sure to post any conversation down below as a comment.
I’ve got an idea… How about in the comments, you guys write little chunks of funny text that we can all highlight and make the computer read back? That could be pretty cool.
Catch you later!