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5 Something Fun & Helpful! | Free Chrome/Google App, Have Your Chrome Browser Read to You! By Alicia

"Lately, I have enjoyed working on my computer while listening to articles. I can't always multitask depending on the task at hand, but when the task is a bit mindless like data entry, I can make things a lot more interesting by having an article read to me in a different window. This FREE app from Google, that works through the Chrome browser, is simple to install and would be helpful for folks with vision problems or perhaps any age/level of student that might need a little help with pronunciation.

When I was in college (in the early 2000s) my roommate was visually impaired, and she had very sophisticated (and expensive!) software that would read the webpage for her. It was a bit clunky, and the voices would make us crack up...often. (I distinctly remember a voice choice in her software of an older English chap that would pronounce all her medical terminology with floral gusto!) Now, it's amazing that this type of software is completely free and can be adjusted to fit your audio preferences with just a few clicks.

1.) Chrome is a free browser by Google, that if you don't already use it is one of my favorite web browsers. You can download it for PC or Mac here.

2.) To get the free app (technically it's what we call an "extension" because it lives and works from within the Chrome browser), you can install it from your already installed Chrome Browserhere. The app/extension is called "Select and Speak" from iSpeak.
  1. Install the app by clicking the blue button that says + FREE. Follow any further instructions it displays. (See graphic above.)
3.) Within a few seconds, you will have a new speaker looking button in the top right-hand corner of your browser window. To get the page to "speak" simply highlight what section of text you are interested in and click the speaker button.
  1. TIP: To select the entire page try (On a Mac: Apple/Splat + A) or (On a PC: Ctrl + A)
Voila! Happy listening! ~ Alicia

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Alicia is a web/print designer & owner of The Branding Arsenal, located in Rockport, Texas.

5 comments:

said...

How cool is that! It worked instantly just like you said it would. Thanks, Alicia!

said...

Thanks for this.
I just purchased online from NCH (from http://www.nch.com.au/ ), a text to speech program for use with MSWord/MSOffice and all else. $30. And I have their speech to text download too.
But your above suggestion is for email ---- and that's just terrrrrrrrrific.
And Chrome apps had a few other handy apps that I sure could use now. Just forgot to check out the gmail and chrome offers of apps. (And I needed to sign back up with their Beta labs as a home tester of some other apps.) Keeps my skills fresh. Thanks for sharing this.

said...

You can actually use it for anything in a web browser, so not just email per say, though you could of course use it for that as well....but anything on a website so news sites, articles, rss feeds, etc. :) Also, if Docs are your need, you can always open them (.doc, .pdf, .ppt) in Google Drive/Docs (in Chrome) and have it read it to you there using this free app. If you don't already use Google Drive it's amazing...everything that the Office Suite has but free and in the Cloud, so you can access it from any machine regardless of your software. :)

said...

I'd like to say thank you for this. I have macular degeneration and often times the letters on the screen are to hard to read. This tool has made my day to day emailing easier. Thank you. All my best.. J.P.

said...

I'm so glad it could help you, JP!! Thank you for the note. - Alicia



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