Patrolling the Longhorn precinct for the latest Windows Vista beta news, commentary, and technical info...
Saturday, September 17, 2005
Speech @ PDC05
Read this for a synopsis of the Speech Recognition and Synthesis session at the PDC. It sounds like the "mixed initiative" demo was pretty interesting.
Monday, September 12, 2005
Let your voice be heard! (if it's Vista- and WinFX-compatible)
I'm having a tough time finding high quality TTS synthesized voices that run on Windows Vista and that work reliabily with the WinFX Speech APIs. While Microsoft Anna is a huge improvement over Microsoft Sam, she still doesn't speak as smoothly as many third-party voices. Cepstral voices are priced well and sound great, but crash intermittently under WinFX usage. Cepstral has acknowledged the defect, but has yet to resolve the issue. If anyone reading this has found a good voice to use with WinFX, please let me know.

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Sunday, September 11, 2005
Windows Vista Ultimate Edition caters to both home and business use
New details have emerged which confirm that Microsoft will indeed release a so-called "Ultimate Edition" of Windows Vista, allowing people like me who want to record TV, develop and host web applications, play games, join a domain, and capture handwritten notes to perform all of those tasks from a single operating system installation. That's right, Windows Vista UE will contain Media Center, Media Center Extender, IIS (now dubbed Windows Web Server), domain support, and Tablet PC input functionality all in the same operating system!

I applaud this decision. While I understand the need for specialized editions at reduced cost for those who will only make use of a few end-user scenarios, Vista-era PCs are going to be more than powerful enough to handle all types of usage from a single installation. I will definitely be using the Ultimate Edition on all my machines.

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