Developments to Watch
FOR JUST $120, YOUR WISH IS THIS SYSTEM'S COMMAND
Marking orders at a computer: Many experts believe that's the way to wring more productivity from office computers--and win the hearts of prospective buyers who still dread keyboards. Trouble is, speech-recognition technology can get pricey and complicated.
Now, there's a $120 answer--at least for anyone who already has a plug-in circuit board for generating sounds, such as Sound Blaster from Creative Labs Inc. Called Voice Blaster, the speech-recognition system was developed by Covox Inc. in Eugene, Ore., a company founded by the team that worked on similar technology used by Air Force pilots. Voice Blaster comes with a headset and boom microphone, plus software that makes it easy to record and edit hundreds of verbal commands for such keyboard-intensive programs as dBASE, Quicken, WordPerfect, and many computer games. Given the growing number of multimedia computers that do synthesized speech, talking back to computers seems only fitting. EDITED BY OTIS PORT