Business Executive Listens His Way to a Ph.D. with TextAloud

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For writing -- and reading -- TextAloud is a lifesaver for doctoral studies candidate.

As a Vice President with a top national brokerage firm, New Jersey business executive Anthony Scriffignano had already discovered the usefulness of TextAloud, a simple and elegant Text to Speech software that converts text into spoken audio, to listen to his reading on his commutes. However, he began to use the software in earnest to support the huge amount of reading required when he started to pursue his Ph.D -- and it was here that TextAloud became truly indispensable.

Created by NextUp Technologies (http://www.NextUp.com), TextAloud is able to convert text into spoken audio files for listening on a PC or portable device like an iPod (TM), and from a wide array of sources, bringing anything from e-mail, to websites, articles, eBooks, reports, or Word documents to the listener's ear in minutes. "TextAloud has definitely helped me in my research and writing in the pursuit of my Ph. D., where I have to read, and write, a LOT," Anthony comments. "In order to focus on the multiple articles and documents involved in my Doctoral research, I often have TextAloud read along with me." Anthony finds that this method helps him to stay focused and moving forward with the reading, especially on long or difficult material. "I find that once I get the speed set to approximate my reading speed, it really helps my retention to use TextAloud. Of course, at any time, I can also close my eyes or look away for a minute, yet I don't lose any reading time!"

Anthony discovered TextAloud while looking for a way to produce MP3 files with specific verbiage for a business project he had been working on. He began to use it to listen to his reading -- and then expanded into using it to listen to his writing, as well, where it has also proven useful for proofing his work. "Especially when there is a missing word, or when I inadvertently type a different word than the one I'd intended. Hearing my writing read back to me enables me to find all sorts of little problems that a traditional spell check simply can't see." He adds, "Listening to your work read back to you is also a great way to get a feel for the overall impression another reader might get from the text you write -- something that's hard to do when I read my own material to myself."

"Ultimately, I use TextAloud both ways -- for reading what I'm reading, and for reading what I write," he comments. "When reading what I write, I simply cut and paste from the section I'm writing directly into TextAloud. When reading what I'm reading, I am usually working from a PDF, so I have the software read the PDF. The ability to read from a PDF is essential since much of the research is delivered from reference libraries in that way."

Using TextAloud on his Sony laptop, the most useful features of the software for Anthony include TextAloud's ability to change pitch and speed, "and of course, the ability to download multiple voices -- including from other vendors -- so that I can get exactly what I like." His favorite premium voices include Acapela's "Heather" and Neospeech's "Paul". "The access to high-quality voices is really essential, especially for listening to longer articles or content," he says.

About TextAloud
TextAloud has been featured in The New York Times, PC Magazine, Writer's Digest, on CNN and more. Hailed by critics and users alike, TextAloud is priced at just $29.95, and is compatible with systems using Windows (R) 98, NT, 2000, XP and Vista. The program is available for fast, safe and secure purchase via http://www.NextUp.com.

About NextUp.com
NextUp.com, a division of NextUp Technologies, LLC, provides award-winning Text to Speech software for consumers, professionals, businesses, educators and those with visual or vocal impairment or learning disabilities.

In addition to TextAloud, NextUp.com markets other innovative Windows software designed to save time and deliver vital information. NewsAloud (TM) is a talking personal "news agent" that finds the stories users want, and then reads them aloud or to portable audio files. WeatherAloud (TM) is a weather application that lets users select and listen to personalized weather forecasts, while StocksAloud (TM) reads stock updates and related news headlines aloud for specific companies of interest. NextUp Talker is an easy and affordable program that allows people who have lost their voices to use the latest in high-quality computer voices to communicate with others. Most recently, NextUp introduced a new text reader, AbleReader, available with the AT&T Natural Voices (TM) for use on Mac computers. Information on AbleReader is available at http://www.AbleReader.com.

NextUp.com also offers TextAloud with optional premium voices from AT&T Natural Voices (TM), NeoSpeech (R), Nuance (R), Acapela (R) and Cepstral (R) for the most natural-sounding computer speech anywhere. Available languages include U.S. English, U.K. English, Indian Accent English, Scottish Accent English, French, Canadian French, Latin American Spanish, Castilian (European) Spanish, Mexican Spanish, Brazilian Portuguese, European Portuguese, Russian, Mandarin Chinese, Cantonese Chinese, Korean, Japanese, German, Italian, Dutch, Belgian Dutch, Danish, Swedish, Norwegian, Polish and Arabic.

Evaluation copies of TextAloud are available upon request. For more information on NextUp.com or TextAloud, or for other case studies involving users ranging from firefighters, doctors and lawyers, to truck drivers, musicians, and more, please contact publicist Angela Mitchell at (904) 982-8043 or via Admitchell @ Nextup.com.

All companies and products referenced in this press release are the trademarks of their respective owners.

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ANGELA MITCHELL
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