Fred’s Head from APH, a Blindness Blog

Fred’s Head, offered by the American Printing House for the Blind, contains tips, techniques, tutorials, in-depth articles, and resources for and by blind or visually impaired people. Our blog is named after the legendary Fred Gissoni, renowned for answering a seemingly infinite variety of questions on every aspect of blindness.

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Tuesday, August 21, 2007 Affordable Speech Programs, a division of NextUp Technologies, LLC, provides award-winning Text-to-Speech software for consumers, business customers, educators, and those with visual or vocal impairment, or learning disabilities. markets innovative Windows software designed to save time and deliver vital information.

TextAloud reads text from email, web pages, reports and more, aloud on your PC. TextAloud can also save your daily reading to MP3 or Windows Media files ready for playback on your iPod, PocketPC, or even on your TV with Tivo's Home Media Option. Be more productive or just be entertained wherever you go with this text reader. Business people, students, educators, writers, lawyers, homemakers and busy people from all walks of life find TextAloud to be an essential tool they use every day. It's been featured in The New York Times, PC Magazine, Writer's Digest, on CNN and more.

NewsAloud is a talking personal "news agent" that finds the stories users want, and then reads them aloud or to portable MP3 files. NewsAloud is easy to set up and get started with right away. Select the categories for news you want and choose how you want to be notified when new stories are found. Select from several available voices to create your own personal information broadcast. The program can also convert Really Simple Syndication (RSS) feeds in to speech for immediate playback.

WeatherAloud is a weather application that lets users select and listen to personalized weather forecasts. These days you need to know more than just the weather outside your door, so WeatherAloud brings you forecasts from other cities and regions you select from around the world. You can build a personal list of forecasts that interest you, and customize each one to meet your needs. Wake up to your local forecast, listen to hourly temperatures from your favorite vacation spot, or hear conditions where your distant loved ones are.

StocksAloud reads stock updates and related news headlines aloud for specific companies of interest. Stock prices, changes, and trading ranges are updated at specified intervals so you can check easy to read summaries, or relax and listen as StocksAloud reads them to you. Choose automatic audio updates and you won't even have to open the program window. Stay on top of your bottom lineFor a really quick and more private update, just press your left mouse button for one second on the system tray icon and a convenient pop up window shows an instant summary of your portfolio while StocksAloud runs in the background. It's up to you to decide how and when you want your information, it can even be emailed to you if that's your preference.

For those who have lost their ability to speak, the gift of an easy, natural-sounding vocal alternative may prove to be a truly life-changing experience. It's a gift that's now possible, thanks to NextUp Talker, a computer program from NextUp Technologies. The latest program from one of the industry's leaders in the field of text to speech technology, NextUp Talker allows people who have lost their voices to use the latest in high-quality computer voices to communicate with others.

NextUp Talker is a Text-to-Speech application specifically designed for people who have temporarily or permanently lost their voices. With natural, human-sounding voices, as well as a host of quick and convenient shortcuts for conversational, commonly-used sentences and phrases, NextUp Talker allows users to easily communicate with others despite vocal impairments, using Windows-based Desktop, Laptop or Tablet PCs.

The use of traditional written communications may leave the newly voiceless with a feeling of disconnection, as it's still exceedingly difficult to write as quickly as others speak. NextUp Talker was created to help them regain an important part of their lives so they can once more "talk" with others. Unlike previous technology products that were too often prohibitively expensive for many, NextUp Talker offers an affordable solution -- and with a free 30-day trial that anyone can download and evaluate immediately! If they decide to purchase NextUp Talker, natural-sounding voices are available in a wide range of genders, ages, accents, and approaches for a truly "conversational" text-to-speech solution.

NextUp Talker Benefits at a Glance:

  • Specifically designed for use in conversation
  • Achieves a more pleasant, "conversational" result thanks to latest generation, high-quality, natural-sounding voices.
  • Works easily with either mouse or keyboard.
  • Easy-to-use shortcuts offer quick access to frequent, commonly-used phrases and expressions. This creates a smooth conversation flow with less delays for a more natural flow. Users can even enter their own individual phrases and special abbreviations as well.
  • Adapts to the user's own style and speed, with options to speak each word, each sentence, or each paragraph as typed (or on demand)
  • Offers the ability to insert actual sound files along with speech! These can help to make kids more comfortable talking with an adult using a computer.
  • Affordable, fast and easy to install

NextUp Talker is compatible with Windows 98, NT, 2000 and XP, or Tablet PCs. The program is available for fast, safe and secure purchase via also offers NextUp Talker with more optional premium voices from AT&T Natural Voices, NeoSpeech and Cepstral -- for the most natural-sounding computer speech anywhere.

Use the contact information below for more information on

NextUp Technologies
2668 Lewisville-Clemmons Rd
Clemmons, NC 27012

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