Clemmons, NC (PRWEB) September 15, 2009
As a civilian security officer with the military in Bettinghausen, Germany, Stephen B. managed a demanding work and study schedule while also assisting his co-workers in their mastery of English on an ongoing basis. It was challenging work, but he soon discovered a useful solution to support him on all of those diverse tasks, in a single PC program called TextAloud, from NextUp.com (http://www.nextup.com).
"The company I work for employs many people from former Eastern Bloc countries," Stephen explains, "and all must have a working knowledge of English to perform their duties well." Stephen himself has an affinity for language and teaching, and is currently studying for a TEFL diploma that will enable him to teach English to foreign students online. To assist his co-workers in mastering English, Stephen used his language skills and came up with a clever way to assist them in learning through listening, with TextAloud.
TextAloud is the easy and affordable program from NextUp that enables PC users to listen to their reading anywhere, "on the go," in natural, human-sounding speech. Unlike expensive gadgets or eReaders, TextAloud is affordable, doesn't require special hardware, and allows PC users to export their reading into sound files for listening via almost any desired format -- from iPods and portable MP3 players, to iPhones, laptops, PDAs, or simple export to CD.
To assist his co-workers in becoming more at ease with English, Stephen created an assortment of English-language materials for them to listen to at leisure or even on the job. Using the Clipboard and simple "copy" and "paste" tools on his PC, Stephen found news articles and clippings from English newspapers, and then pasted them into TextAloud, outputting them to MP3 files for some of his work colleagues to listen to while they worked or went about their days. This way, his co-workers could learn and improve their English pronunciations while also acclimating themselves to the task of mentally translating what they heard, which would lead to improved English comprehension overall as well.
"TextAloud is certainly an ideal program for dyslexic people, or those wishing to learn a language, and can be used to learn a multitude of different languages. As someone who will be teaching English as a second language to students over the Internet, I'm especially excited about the opportunities TextAloud offers me there," Stephen comments. "It's where I believe TextAloud can be used to its full potential, as students who study can actually hear the words spoken correctly aloud."
Stephen's favorite features include the naturalistic voices, as well as the way TextAloud allows the user to adjust the speed of the computer speech according to the listener's preference, whether faster or slower. He also appreciates the "pause" feature, which allows the user to insert a pause into the text wherever desired. He uses the feature on a frequent basis when creating sound files for his colleagues, both for emphasis, as well as to assist the listener in fully absorbing the English word or term. The 'speak to file' option is another favorite of his, as it allows the spoken text to be burned on CD or copied to a flash drive almost instantly. "I'm also lucky that I have translation programs such as SYSTRAN and Prompt, as well as iMindmap (TM), to work with TextAloud, and with which I can link up an audio file from TextAloud to a branch of the program," Stephen adds.
Stephen also uses the program for learning the course material for his work as a security officer, as well as his studies to become a teacher. "I get my coursework online, but with workdays that are often 15 hours or more, the last thing I want is to have to start reading when I get home," he comments. "TextAloud enables me to simply copy, paste, and listen to my coursework while relaxing or even lying in bed. I just sit back, relax and listen -- it's much easier than trying to read visually. To have an audio program like TextAloud within constant reach is a real luxury."
A highly useful PC program for students, scientists, writers, business people, students and people from all walks of life, 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 from $29.95, and is compatible with systems using Windows (R) 98, NT, 2000, XP and Vista. TextAloud can even be listened to on TV, using TiVo's (R) Home Media Option, and works seamlessly with iTunes, for easy synching with iPod (R), iPhone (TM), or other iTunes-compatible portable audio players. The program is available for fast, safe and secure purchase via http://www.NextUp.com.
In addition to Nuance (R), NextUp.com also offers TextAloud with optional Premium Voices from AT&T Natural Voices (TM), 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, Arabic, Basque, Catalan, Cantonese Chinese, Mandarin Chinese, Czech, Danish, Dutch, Belgian Dutch, Faroese, Finnish, French, Canadian French, German, Greek, Hindi, Icelandic, Irish, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Norwegian, Polish, Brazilian Portuguese, European Portuguese, Russian, Castilian (European) Spanish, Latin American Spanish, Mexican Spanish, Swedish, Taiwanese, and Turkish.
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. NextUp Talker is an easy and affordable program that enables people who have lost their voices to use the latest in high-quality computer voices to communicate aloud with others.
Evaluation copies of TextAloud are available for the media upon request. For more media information on NextUp.com or TextAloud, or for a rich assortment of case studies involving users ranging from firefighters and lawyers, to writers, editors, teachers, actors, students, entrepreneurs, doctors, truck drivers, musicians, and more, please contact publicist Angela Mitchell at (904) 982-8043.
All companies and products referenced in this press release are the trademarks of their respective owners.
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