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Dragon Dictation: Review and Survey by Bob Sprankle

This week's article is an experiment and review for the Dragon Dictation iPhone application which is currently free [and] available for the iPhone. I will write this complete article by talking into my phone using this application and if the application makes any mistakes, then I will put the correct words in brackets and we'll see how well this application does. One drawback is that I can only put so much text into the document at a time and when it's filled up then the application will stop and I need to e-mail it to myself and then start a new section. So that give [can] me [be] a bit time consuming and also interrupt[s] my flow of thoughts. But for short text and especially for someone who is challenge[d] to NIST and in the texting arena, this app works great and some of the recognition is incredibly surprising. For instance he it has no problem with the word "supercalifragilisticexpialidocious." The way Dragon works works is you just click the app to start it up and click have the "[Tap] to record indicates ", say some words, and then it pushes your speech up to the server where Dragon's powerful computers can turn it into text. Dragon software has been around free [for a] long time and it's definitely come down in price and is available for your Mac or PC. East Beach [Speech] to text technology has definitely improved significantly since the last time that I've looked into it and for instance, with the iPhone app, there is no training involved at all. I just speak and then the processor[s] is at the Dragon site take care of it. One thing that I have noticed with the Dragon app is that it seems to recognize words spoken by an adult much better than children. Now this test has been done in [an] with a small sampling of students in an informal setting and desolate [definitely] not in a scientific way.

So what doesthat [this] is making me wonder about is this: is speech recognition becoming more I am ready for schools? And, especially as an elementary teacher with students that take a long time to type in their thoughts, reason or even to write--- it isjust is this the tool of the near future?

The other thing that it makes me wonder about is: how much time schools or teachers are actually giving to curse of [cursive] these days as well as to time to learn typing in the elementary grades.

So I'm going to set up a survey below and I would love to hear your feedback on how much time you give to cursive instruction and how much time you get give to typing instruction in the grades K to five [5]?

Thanks so much for joining in on the survey!

In conclusion, I like the Dragon have [app] for my texting purposes when I'm writing something very short. It's definitely faster than me using my big thumbs on such a small iPhone. As far as doing a long piece, I'm not sure that that's it's the best way for me to write and I'm pretty sure I prefer typing.

Afterword (done with a keyboard and NOT the Dragon App):

As you can see with the text above, Dragon did pretty well. Most words are recognized and few words were dropped. Dragon makes it quite easy to fix the errors right within the app, but I chose to fix them here in the blog so you could see the amount of errors and what they looked like.

Bottom line for me: as mentioned above, it's great when I need to write on the iPhone for short "texting-like" pieces, but it is terrible for any serious writing. The above writing is pretty sloppy because I'm not able to pause and do any real editing, as I can do when typing. It may be faster to get the words (or letters) out, but they're definitely weakened by not having the benefit of my fingers tapping them out.

However... are we needing to take a closer look at speech recognition software once again in education? Are the children that we're still teaching typing to going to be "talking" to their machines when they leave us? Is typing an essential skill? What about cursive instruction?