MS Word plugin will convert text to audio for the blind

PlexTalk DAISY PlayerMicrosoft plans to launch a free plugin next year for Microsoft Word 2003 and 2007 next year that will add a "Save as DAISY" feature to the word processor.

What's DAISY? It stands for Digital Accessible Information System, and it's essentially a format for converting text to speech. This isn't one of those parlor tricks for getting your computer to say "I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that." Rather, DAISY is an open format used by computer programs and hardware devices like the PlexTalk PTN1 that blind people can use to listen to books and text.

Microsoft plans to host the Open XML to DAISY XML translator on open-source project management site SourceForge, meaning independent developers will be able to look at the code and come up with their own translators and plugins.

[via CNet]

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