Experimenting with more Alex

I’m trying an experiment. I just recorded Alex reading the silly little passage I wrote below. I want to actually record the crazy way I figured out how to upload the videos, but I don’t think I can record while I’m trying to upload it. I’ll try it though. If not, I guess I’ll either do another post about all that. I don’t know. I’m really tired and need to stop this. Haha! Ok here is the link followed by what is in the recording. Yeah, can’t record while I’m getting videos off the iPod. Spinelli had tried to get my attention before I started trying all this, so she got a video lol. I don’t know how good it is as I don’t think there was much light. I’m only gonna do the youtube links, as the blogger thing was just too slow.

***Hi! I’m Alex. I’m the newest voice for Voiceover, Apple’s built in screen reader. I come standard on all Apple computers. I think I’m only available on OS 10 and up, but don’t quote me on that. I’m just a computer, after all.

I was designed to sound as human as possible, and I even breathe. I’m not sure if this video is going to capture that or not. So listen closely at natural pauses.

The person who is videoing this went blind a little under two years ago. She was an avid computer user before this and she used ahem, Windows. Psst. I’ll let you in on a secret. She tought herself her Apple computer and Voiceover with no help from the sighted folk. She had heard about Windows screen readers, like Jaws. Shhh…don’t let the Apple peeps here me mention Jaws.

But, when she found out that all Apple computers have Voiceover built in, she luckily had just enough money left from her sightie days to buy one. And the rest is history. I’m even on her new iPod, which lets her take videos. The iPod Nanos all have Voiceover too and the latest one has the video recorder. So now I can finally let my voice be heard.

I say things like meow. And croissant. Pretty perfect, don’t you think? What about shhh, hmmm, psst, mmm. Yeah. How about wassup?

I also say some things weird. Like, whaaat? That’s what spelled with three letter a’s. And if you type yay a bunch of times, I sound like this, yayayayayay!

Or laughing. Hahahaha! Hehehehehehe! Hahahehehahaha! Ha ha ha ha he he he ha ha ha. The humans like to make me say this stuff, so I might as well show off.

Of course I swear. But we’re making this video G rated.

So the blog friends know that this computer’s welcome message says, Meow meow meow, kitty wants a croissant. It just kind of ended up that way because meow and croissant were the first words the human really found funny.

Ah, wanna hear how JayNoi sounds? That came from a typo. And that person got stuck with that name.

One thing I can’t say right is brrr. Or grrr. The Apple folks haven’t corrected those like they did wassup. I used to say that wah sup.

What else do I say funny? I don’t know. I’ll leave you with some silliness.

Meow meow shhh, meow meow shhh, psst would you like a croissant? Hmmm, why yes I would, mmm. Yeah yeah yeah it’s fun to hear me say wassup and meow, wassup wassup, meow. Because my human is a silly, silly girl.

Did you hear me breathe?


Filed under Alex, apple Inc, Jaws, proud geek, quirky words, screen reader, Spinelli, spoons, video, Voiceover, youtube

17 Responses to Experimenting with more Alex

  1. ha ha – I love those voices on Mac’s!!! It’s so fun. For fun, I turn it on my coworker’s computers and then change the voices. They haven’t figured out how to change it so it’s fun to see them try to figure it out!!! 😀 I just giggle while they try. 😀

  2. Awesome. I like how he says croissant. more fun than JAWS. JAWS just sorta says it like cress-saunt. But JAWS still hasn’t figured out brrr or grrr. So sometimes I do grrr like gurr’r’r’r’r’r and brrr like burr’r’r’r’r’r’r’r. What did Alex think of that?

    Silly Spinelli, you have to learn to make more noise. Don’t you want a croissant? Then ya gotta meow! When you got going with the meows and croissants at the end, I was picturing a little drum beat behind it.

  3. Ro

    I wish I could have gotten her earlier. There must have been a fly because she was doing the kitty bug meow.

    I hear the same thing in my head. When I was showing Alex to a friend I wrote something like, meow. croissant. meow, meow. croissant. yeah, uh huh, meow. croissant. meow meow, croissant. word.

  4. Ro

    Oh. My. Oh my. Oh me oh my.

    Ok, my blurps would drive you nuts. I would go nuts listening to that all day. Oh my goodness. Wow.

    Ok I really can’t wait to record that Trixie post now. So you can see how I hear you. I should have Alex read a post of Steve’s, too. Wow.

  5. It’s true. It’s all what you get used to.

    And while JAWS has other voices, that one in that synth is the least obnoxious. I do have real speak voices, but I find they’re too processor-intensive.

  6. Ro

    Yeah, that’s the only downfall of Alex. They don’t even have him on the iPhone because he’s too processor intensive. I have him on my iPod only because I overrode the system voice. But I wonder if it would work better if it didn’t have Alex.

    Since I turned off the blurbs, everything seems to be moving faster. And while looking at the Voiceover utility, I discovered the way to do something I’ve wanted to do but was too lazy to look up. So it looks like my fun with videos is becoming quite educational for me hahaha! I wonder if Alex will throw less tantrums without the blurbs. I really think that might be why VO was freezing. I move to fast and maybe all those blurbs were locking things up.

  7. Anonymous

    Ro, Just finished watching both videos and heard a bell both times. I guess that your cookies are done.


  8. Ro

    Aye. I wish I had cookies. But alas, the dings are me e-mails, which I get an over abundance of 🙂

  9. I have turned voice over on my computer on sometimes, but haven’t figured out how to get it read non apple prouducts…such as Firefox, plus I don’t know how you can understand it that fast! wow! That was funny.

    Erin & Pompei Guide Pup in Training

  10. Ro, Alex sounds, well, intelligible! I have heard jaws, but can’t understand a word! And, it was interesting to hear your voice on the video. I think you sound like me!

  11. Yeah, I’d bet money that the bloops were part of your problem. Using a human type voice on a computer is hell on system resources and any sound you don’t need that you can eliminate will do nothing but help. The more comfortable you get with the computer and the faster you move, the more those unnecessary bells and whistles will get in your way.

  12. Ro

    I know that a lot of VO users use Firefox, so I know it’s possible but I don’t know how. Yeah, Alex is my first screen reader, so when I got a Windows smart phone with Windows voices I was like, ergh, um, what did he say? I still have a hard time understanding my text messages a lot.

    I wish I could have a few of the sounds though. I’m gonna look more closely at it and see if there’s anyway to keep some of the sounds. I have my pages wrap, and I miss the sound of it telling me I just wrapped. There were definitely some important sounds that go away while just trying to get rid of the blurps.

  13. \Herm. I think the only way VO-users use Firefox is to dual boot their system, boot into windows, and use a rudamentary windows screenreader like NVDA and use Firefox that way. From what I have read from Macvisionaries, Firefox and VO don’t play nice due to a myriad of issues.

  14. Ro

    Oh that’s right. Duh. I do remember that now. What the heck browser am I thinking of.

  15. That’s so cool! But I have to say, I understood JAWS better than Alex. Except I like that Alex says this like Shhhh instead of saying s h h h h h h.
    So if I have a Macbook, where do I find my Alex?

  16. Ro

    Really? Interesting. I find Jaws so hard to understand, but I’ve been conditioned with Alex.

    You have a Macbook? To turn on Voiceover, hit command plus function plus F5. That turns on Voiceover. To make him talk, you have to hold down control plus option, and use your arrow keys to navigate. To turn him off again, just hit command plus function plus F5 again. It will say Voiceover on or Voiceover off.

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