What programs are compatible with Dragon Naturally Speaking dictation software?

Summary:  How to choose programs that work with Dragon NaturallySpeaking digital dictation software.  Why Dragon Naturally Speaking dictate “select-and-say” isn't compatible with some programs.    Dragon Naturally Speaking “Select-and-Say” Word Processor compatibility list.  Dictate and edit by voice using the following Dragon Compatible programs.

Dear ChuckEgg,  I've been using Dragon Naturally Speaking dictation software for some time and I've been using it with a variety of word processors and programs.   In some programs I can use Dragon's “Select” voice command to select any text in my document, but in other text boxes Dragon only allows me to select only what I've just dictated text.    Why is this?

ChuckEgg's Answer:  This feature that selects text, so that you can edit it, is Dragon NaturallySpeaking's “Select-and-Say” command.   It's used for interactively navigating and editing a document by using your voice.  To use NaturallySpeaking's “Select-and-Say” command, you simply say “select…” followed (without pause) by the visible text you want NaturallySpeaking to select.   For example, you could say, “select applesauce [slight pause] peaches”; to select the word “applesauce” in your text, then replace it with the word “peaches.”

If you're using a fully Dragon compatible word processor or text box, you can use the  Dragon NaturallySpeaking “select” voice command to directly select ANY and ALL visible text; you can even use your voice to select text that you may have typed in a previous session; but when using Dragon NaturallySpeaking with a non-standard word processor or text window you can only select  the text you've most recently dictated; you can't directly access  saved text that you've typed or previously dictated.

Some people dictate verbatim, and never need to go back to fix what they've dictated.   Those people don't have much need for the “Select-and-Say” command.    However, many people, like me, may dictate and revise the same document over several sessions, and have a need to select and revise what is already written.   Sometimes it's easier to revise by typing, but it can be easier to navigate and select with your voice using Dragon's “Select-and-Say” command.     Once upon a time,  most people used Microsoft Word.   And Dragon Naturally speaking works well with many Microsoft products.    But Dragon's “Select-and-Say” dictation doesn't work with web based text boxes.  In my experience, you'll have the best results if you use WordPad, NotePad, or Dragon Pad and cut and paste your document to your final target only after you're completely finished dictating and editing your document.

For example, you'll find that Dragon isn't compatible with the following programs:

  • WordPress is not fully Dragon Naturally Speaking Compatible
  • Movable Type is not fully Dragon Naturally Speaking Compatible
  • Blogger is not fully Dragon Naturally Speaking Compatible
  • Foxpro is not fully Dragon Naturally Speaking Compatible
  • Internet Explorer is not fully Dragon Naturally Speaking Compatible

So why doesn't Dragon Naturally Spea

king “Select-and-Say” work with every computer program?

Dragon NaturallySpeaking is able to access ALL text, including saved text from previous sessions, if you're editing a text box or a word processor that that uses the Microsoft Word processing engine known as “RichEdit.”   Programs that do not use the Microsoft word processing engine, “RichEdit,” only allow you to select text you've recently dictated.

In short, Dragon NaturallySpeaking  allows full Select-and-Say control in any window that behaves like a standard Microsoft Word Processing edit control.  An edit control is still considered standard if its window class name and window styles are similar to those of standard Microsoft Windows edit controls.  So, in some cases you can “trick” Dragon Naturally Speaking into allowing full Select-and-Say in non-compatible programs.   I've tried this with several programs, it has rarely worked, and isn't worth your time trying. You can read more about tricking Dragon Naturally Speaking by following the link in the resources section, below.

Below is a partial list of programs that allow full “Select-and-Say” editing, even with saved text because they use Microsoft “RichEdit.”   Not all of these versions of these programs have full “Select-and-say” compatibility.  ; see www.scansoft.com for details.

  • Microsoft Word is Dragon Naturally Speaking Compatible
  • Corel WordPerfect 10 is Dragon Naturally Speaking Compatible
  • Microsoft Excel is Dragon Naturally Speaking Compatible
  • Microsoft Internet Explorer is Dragon Naturally Speaking Compatible
  • Microsoft Outlook is Dragon Naturally Speaking Compatible
  • Eudora is Dragon Naturally Speaking Compatible
  • Jarta is compatible  http://www.jarte.com/
  • Tapeditor works but not available

Below is a partial list of programs that are partially Dragon NaturallySpeaking compatible.  That is, they only allow you to “Select-and-Say” recently dictated words from the current dictation session:

  • Abi Word is not fully Dragon Naturally Speaking Compatible
  • Lotus Notes is not fully Dragon Naturally Speaking Compatible
  • Microsoft Access is not fully Dragon Naturally Speaking Compatible
  • Microsoft PowerPoint is not fully Dragon Naturally Speaking Compatible
  • AOL Instant Messenger is not fully Dragon Naturally Speaking Compatible
  • Remote Desktop Connection.

Generally, a program uses the Windows Word Processing engine if it uses one of the following dynamic link libraries, or its window class name is one of the following:

  • Edit
  • RichEdit
  • RichEdit20A
  • RichEdit20W
  • RichEdit50W
  • Riched32.dll
  • Riched20.dll
  • Msftedit.dll

Resources

  • How to enable full Select-and-Say in non compatible programs:  http://nuance.custhelp.com/app/answers/detail/a_id/3765/~/enabling-full-select-and-say-capability-in-other-applications-for-dragon
  • Microsoft RichEdit details:  http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/bb787873%28VS.85%29.aspx

Photo Credit

Image captures and photographs by Chuck Eglinton

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