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Re: emacspeak speech server

yeah, wow!  it seems like everyone has a comment about this.

i've only been using emacspeak since version 12, so i'll not pretend
to know it's entire history.

there is no doubt that a speech server, such as outloud, is an
abstraction and one layer below emacspeak.

i see artifacts in the code that suggest that, in much earlier
versions of emacspeak, the decTalk was the only speech server used.
just notice the general use of DTK prefix on common functions and

Raman, please jump in here if i'm on the wrong track.

i also guess that emacspeak was designed from the bottom up.  at
least, initially.  had it been me in charge, i would have started by
throwing characters at a TTS device.  later, proceeding to make emacs
do this transparently.

there is nothing wrong with this approach and it's indeed very common
in solo or small group efforts.  however, when the project is a hit,
such as emacspeak, the code undergoes a long evolution.  this is where
features are added.  features that were not in the wildest dreams of
the project early on.  some retrofitting takes place and in some
cases, new layers are inserted between existing ones, sometimes,
invalidating naming conventions.  such changes in architecture result
when, for example, a relation between two layers is assumed to be one
to one.  this may result in a tight coupling between the layers that
gets in the way later.

Dimitri, you mentioned that JAWS is structured in a similar way as
emacspeak is today.  i agree to some extent but, it's really hard to
compare the two.

i played with windows and JAWS a while.  long enough to form the
opinion that the combo is junk, especially the windows part, and
nothing i wanted to be using!  bah!

thanks, and sorry for the topic drift.

>Sender: paduch@imm.uran.ru
>From: Dmitry Paduchih <paduch@imm.uran.ru>
>Date: Wed, 05 Sep 2001 15:39:32 +0600
>User-Agent: Gnus/5.090004 (Oort Gnus v0.04) Emacs/21.0.104
>Resent-From: emacspeak@cs.vassar.edu
>Precedence: list
>Resent-Sender: emacspeak-request@cs.vassar.edu
>I have read several postings here stating that speech servers provide
>an abstraction of some generalized speech device for emacspeak. This
>point being amusingly simple and attractive isn't so evident for me
>however. Indeed, emacspeak distribution contains the modules
>and I personally use modules
>which came separately from main emacspeak distribution.
>At least for their names I would assume that emacspeak contains some
>knowledge about implementation related issues: dtk, tcl, outloud, and
>I also can't consider layer structure to be the main difference
>between emacspeak and screen readers for MS environment because audio
>environments in MS world do essentially provide very similar
>structure. Take for example Jaws:
>At the top layer you have windows, the do everything, do anything
>system. The layer below that is Jaws which works a bit like an
>interpreter of the text and actions performed within the system. Jaws
>produces sounds and text speech-enabling the system and passes this
>text to the next layer, the SAPI.
>All this of course despite the fact that I prefer emacspeak to be my
>audio environment. <smile>
>Best regards,
>        Dmitry
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Jerry Sievers   305 854-3001 (home)     Unix Administrator/Consultant
                305 321-1144 (mobile)   http://www.JerrySievers.com/~gsievers/

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