Since the beginning of the computer age, people have always enjoyed making computers talk to them. These days, that functionality is built right into Windows and you can easily use it to have your PC read documents to you.
Using the text to speech functionality of your computer can save you a lot of time if you need to study for tests, read books, review reports, or if you are just feel like listening instead of reading. While the voice may sound computer generated, there is always the option of downloading new SAPI-compatible voice profiles from various sites on the Internet, though most of them aren’t free.
Most Windows PCs are equipped with at least two American English voices (one male, one female). Many computers also offer a variety of voices that are fluent in different languages. By accessing the settings through your control panel, which we will discuss later on, you can adjust the pitch, speed, and volume of your computer’s SAPI voice.
In this article, we’re going to cover how get your PC to interpret the two most common types of documents most people use—PDFs and Word documents—and speak their contents to you. We’ll also talk a bit about fine-tuning your PC’s voice.
Have Adobe Reader to Read PDF Documents to You
Adobe Reader is the default choice for many people for viewing PDF files. While it Adobe Reader became bloated over the years, recent versions are better and fairly pleasant to use. Adobe Reader can also read documents to you. If you don’t already have Reader installed, head to the Adobe Reader download page. Make sure to uncheck their optional McAffee downloads, and then click the “Install Now” button.
Note: Adobe Reader also installs browser plugins to integrate PDF tools into your browser. If you prefer not to use that, you can follow these steps for disabling plug-ins in your web browser of choice, disabling the “Adobe Acrobat” plug-in.
When you’ve installed Reader, open up a PDF file that you’d like the computer to read to you….
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