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Dragon Systems

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Dragon Systems

Dragon NaturallySpeaking
File:Dragonnaturallyspeaking130ppx.PNG
Developer(s) Nuance Communications
Stable release 12.0 / October 2012
Operating system Microsoft Windows
Type Speech recognition
License Proprietary
Website

Dragon NaturallySpeaking (also known as Dragon for PC, or DNS),[1] is a speech recognition software package developed by Dragon Systems of Newton, Massachusetts, and later acquired by Nuance Communications. It runs on Windows personal computers. The most recent package is version 12.0,[2] which supports 32-bit and 64-bit editions of Windows XP, Vista, 7 and 8.[3][4] The Mac OS version is called DragonDictate[5] or Dragon for Mac.

Features

NaturallySpeaking uses a minimal user interface. As an example, dictated words appear in a floating tooltip as they are spoken (though there is an option to suppress this display to increase speed), and when the speaker pauses, the program transcribes the words into the active window at the location of the cursor (Dragon does not support dictating to background windows). The software has three primary areas of functionality: dictation, text-to-speech and command input. The user is able to dictate and have speech transcribed as written text, have a document synthesized as an audio stream, or issue commands that are recognized as such by the program. In addition, voice profiles can be accessed through different computers in a networked environment, although the audio hardware and configuration must be identical on both machines. The Professional version allows creation of custom commands to control programs or functions not built into NaturallySpeaking.

History

Dr. James Baker laid out the description of a speech understanding system called DRAGON in 1975.[6] Then in 1982 he and Dr. Janet Baker, his wife, founded Dragon Systems to release products centered around their voice recognition prototype;[7] he was President of the company and she was CEO. DragonDictate was first released for DOS, and utilized hidden Markov models, a probabilistic method for temporal pattern recognition. At the time, the hardware was insufficiently powerful to address the problem of word segmentation, and DragonDictate was unable to determine the boundaries of words during continuous speech input. Users were forced to pronounce one word at a time, each clearly separated by a small pause. DragonDictate was based on a trigram model, and is known as a discrete utterance speech recognition engine.[8]

Dragon Systems released NaturallySpeaking 1.0 as their first continuous dictation product in 1997.[9] The company was then purchased in June 2000 by Lernout & Hauspie, a Belgium based corporation that had been involved in financial scandals as reported by the New York Times.[10] Following the all-share deal advised by Goldman Sachs, Lernout & Hauspie declared bankruptcy in November 2000. The Bakers had received hundreds of millions in stock, but were only able to sell a few million dollars worth before the stock lost all its value as a result of the accounting fraud. The Bakers sued Goldman Sachs for negligence, intentional misrepresentation and breach of fiduciary duty, which eventually (January, 2013) led to a 23-day trial in Boston. The jury ruled in favor of Goldman Sachs and cleared them of all charges.[11] Following the bankruptcy of Lernout & Hauspie, the rights to the Dragon product line were acquired by ScanSoft of Burlington, Massachusetts. In 2005, ScanSoft launched a de facto acquisition of Nuance Communications, and rebranded itself as Nuance.[12]

From 2012, LG Smart TVs include voice recognition feature powered by the same speech engine as Dragon NaturallySpeaking.[13]

Versions

Version Release date Editions Operating Systems Supported
1.0 June 1997 Personal Windows 95, NT 4.0.
2.0 November 1997 Standard, Preferred, Deluxe Windows 95, NT 4.0.
3.0 October 1998 Point & Speak, Standard, Preferred, Professional (with optional Legal and Medical add-on products) Windows 95, 98, NT 4.0.
4.0 August 4, 1999 Essentials, Standard, Preferred, Professional, Legal, Medical, Mobile Windows 95, 98, NT 4.0 SP3+.
5.0 August 2000 Essentials, Standard, Preferred, Professional, Legal, Medical Windows 98, Me, NT 4.0 SP6+, 2000.
6.0 November 15, 2001 Essentials, Standard, Preferred, Professional, Legal, Medical
7.0 March 2003 Essentials, Standard, Preferred, Professional, Legal, Medical Windows 98SE, Me, NT4 SP6+, 2000, XP.
8.0 November 2004 Essentials, Standard, Preferred, Professional, Legal, Medical Windows Me (Only Standard and Preferred editions), Windows 2000 SP4+, Windows XP SP1+.
9.0 July 2006 Standard, Preferred, Professional, Legal, Medical, SDK client, SDK server, Windows 2000 SP4+, XP SP1+.
9.5 January 2007 Standard, Preferred, Professional, Legal, Medical, SDK client, SDK server Windows 2000 SP4+, XP SP1+, Vista (32-bit).
10.0 August 7, 2008 Essentials, Standard, Preferred, Professional, Legal, Medical Windows 2000 SP4+, XP SP2+ (32-bit), Vista (32-bit and 64-bit), Windows 7 (32 and 64-bit). Server 2003.
10.1 March 2009 Standard, Preferred, Professional, Legal, Medical Windows 2000 SP4+, XP SP2+ (32-bit), Vista (32-bit and 64-bit), Windows 7 (32 and 64-bit). Server 2003.
11.0 August 2010 Home, Premium, Professional, Legal Windows XP SP2+ (32-bit), Vista SP1+ (32-bit and 64-bit), 7 (32 and 64-bit). Server 2003, 2008.
11.0 2011 SDK client (DSC), SDK server (DSS) Windows XP SP2+ (32-bit only), Vista SP1+ (32-bit and 64-bit), Windows 7 (32-bit and 64-bit), Windows Server 2003 and 2008, SP1, SP2 and R2 (32-bit and 64-bit)
11.5 June 2011 Home, Premium, Professional, Legal Windows XP SP2+ (32-bit), Vista SP1+ (32-bit and 64-bit), 7 (32 and 64-bit). Server 2003, 2008.
11.0 August 2011 Medical (Dragon Medical Practice Edition) Windows XP SP2+ (32-bit), Vista SP1+ (32-bit and 64-bit), 7 (32 and 64-bit). Server 2003, 2008.
12.0 October 2012 Home, Premium, Professional, Legal Windows XP SP3+ (32-bit), Vista SP2+ (32-bit and 64-bit), 7 (32 and 64-bit), 8 (32 and 64-bit). Server 2008, Server 2008 R2, Server 2012.
12.5 February 2013 Home, Premium, Professional, Legal Windows XP SP3+ (32-bit), Vista SP2+ (32-bit and 64-bit), 7 (32 and 64-bit), 8 (32 and 64-bit). Server 2008, Server 2008 R2, Server 2012.
2 June 2013 Medical (Dragon Medical Practice Edition 2) Windows XP SP3+ (32-bit), Vista SP2+ (32-bit and 64-bit), 7 (32 and 64-bit), 8 (32 and 64-bit). Server 2008, Server 2008 R2, Server 2012.

Dragon NaturallySpeaking 12 is available in the following languages

  • US English
  • UK English
  • French
  • German
  • Italian
  • Spanish
  • Dutch
  • Japanese

See also

References

External links

  • for Nuance Communications
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