If you keep up-to-date on discussions on the bills that Senate hasn’t passed, or if you regularly read about groundbreaking developments in your field of expertise, you probably spend hours each day with your eyes fixed on the screen consuming all the information that you can get on the Internet.

While doing these can be a relaxing hobby or pastime, it can also be a cause of unnecessary eyestrain especially if you already work your day job in front of the computer. In addition, these are actually things that you can do while multitasking or laying on your bed with your eyes closed.

TTS Software

Text to speech (TTS) software have come a long way since the 1980s in terms of performance and accessibility to the public. In fact, a number of operating systems already come with built-in support for speech synthesis. Even web browsers now have plugins and extensions that provide text to speech translation when browsing the web.

Give your eyes their much needed rest, because they do not need to be hard at work all the time. Set up your operating systems and web browsers for text to speech translation.

Dedicated Software

Here are some dedicated TTS software that I found online:

  1. Festival Speech Synthesis System (Linux). You can use this with synthetic voices developed with the Festvox project. This can also be used in conjunction with the xsel package to read out highlighted text on other applications.
  2. gnuspeech (Linux)
  3. TextAloud (Windows)
  4. AbleReader (Windows, Mac)

I currently use Festival Speech Synthesis System on my personal computer, hooked to read out highlighted text on my web browser.

Reading Online

These plugins and extensions are designed specifically for use with your web browser:

  1. SpeakIt! (Chrome)
  2. FoxVox (Firefox)
  3. Text to Voice (Firefox)
  4. Chrome Speak (Chrome)
  5. ChromeVox (Chrome)

What TTS software do you use?

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