Author Topic: PowerTalk is Automatic speech for PowerPoint 2000 (or later) presentations.  (Read 2411 times)

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Software Santa

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PowerTalk is Automatic speech for PowerPoint 2000 (or later) presentations.

PowerTalk is Automatic speech for PowerPoint presentations.

PowerTalk is a free program that automatically speaks any presentation or slide show running in Microsoft PowerPoint for Windows.

You just download and install PowerTalk and while you open and run the presentation as usual it speaks the text on your slides. The advantage over other generic 'Text To Speech' programs is that PowerTalk is able to speak text as it appears and can also speak hidden text attached to images.

Speech is provided by the standard synthesised computer voices that are provided with Windows.


   1. Aids you if you have difficulty speaking or you have an audience that contains people with sight problems (visual impairments, low vision or blind) or who have dyslexia;
   2. Helps you access presentations when there is no speaker and you are partially sighted;
   3. Creates engaging school activities such as reading stores created by students;
   4. Simple to use as you just select a presentation and it runs in PowerPoint as usual;
   5. Speaks the text on any presentation and uses standard Windows speech;
   6. Waits for text to appear and animation effects to play before speaking;
   7. Will speak hidden 'alternative text' for pictures, graphics shapes and text;
   8. Lets you add instant narration to presentations without the need to record speech;
   9. Is a useful tool for testing presentation accessibility when using a screen reader;
  10. Is mature with 1000s of downloads and several reviews from people who have found it useful;
  11. Free (gratis - as in 'free beer'). No purchase, registration or adverts, you just download and run it;
  12. Free (libre - as in 'free speech'). The Open Source License guarantees you the freedom to make copies and to alter its behaviour;
  13. Is listed on DMOZ and on Google web directories;
  14. Anyone can contribute to the project and developers will find it is a SourceForge project;
  15. Is a featured project in the OATSoft Open Source Assistive Technology Software project which brings the benefits of Open Source software to Assistive Technology users;

Downloads - Get PowerTalk.

PowerTalk requires that you have PowerPoint 2000 (or later) and the Microsoft Speech API (SAPI) 5.1 (part of Windows XP). This is explained below.

Once downloaded, Open/Run the installer and after the installation is complete you can open the demo presentation to test PowerTalk works correctly. You can install 2 additional free voices (Mike and Mary) with the SAPI Text To Speech (TTS) components [12MB]. The Using PowerTalk section below describes how to use PowerTalk on existing presentations.

Previous versions of all files can be found at the SourceForge PowerTalk Project Files Page.

Being an Open Source product, the source code [60KB] is freely available for those who wish to see or use it.

Requirements, what you must have to run PowerTalk.

PowerTalk runs on Windows 98 (SE), Windows ME and Windows XP. It is expected to run on Windows NT 4.0 and Windows 2000. It is unlikely to run on Windows 95 or the initial release of Windows 98.

You must have PowerPoint 2000 or later installed. Unfortunately the PowerPoint viewers are not useable as they do not provide the basic functionality that PowerTalk requires.

The Microsoft Speech API 5.1 (MS SAPI 5.1) must be installed and if you have Windows XP you will already have it. For other versions of Windows you can download and install the SAPI Text To Speech (TTS) components [12MB]. This download can also be used with Windows XP and will then add 2 voices (Mike and Mary) to the single voice that is supplied with XP (Sam). To check if you have SAPI installed, look for a voice called 'Microsoft Sam' in Control Panel's Speech Settings (Start -> Control Panel -> Speech -> Text To Speech). Please note that the PowerTalk cannot use the earlier SAPI 4, although it is apparently possible to have both SAPI 4 & 5 installed on the same machine.

Basic sound capabilities are required. Most PCs with a sound card or 'on board' AC'97 sound will need only the addition of a simple powered speaker(s). Older PCs, or those that can only produce simple 'beeps' trough an internal speaker, may require additional sound hardware. You can test your PC's sound capabilities with the 'Preview Voice' facility in the Control Panel's Speech settings.
« Last Edit: March 28, 2014, 08:46:04 PM by Software Santa »


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