Older Computers and New Speech Engines

Martin McCormick martin at dc.cis.okstate.edu
Fri Dec 12 21:37:46 UTC 2008

Marian Selea writes:
> Tim is right! Had the same issue and it has been addressed as described.
> Good luck!

	Thanks to each of you. I'll give it a try this evening
and also have my wife watch the screen if it doesn't come up
talking at that point.

	All indications on the laptop are that it isn't just
locking up or anything like that. One thing I do know from the
oralux distribution that is on there now is that the sound card
appears to have only one channel. If one is playing an audio
file, speakup is silent. If speakup is speaking, you can't play
audio from anything else. You get a "device busy" indication.

	So how, you might ask, does one play audio? You can turn
off speakup and play audio or you can do something like

sleep 1;aplay audiofile.wav

	The ability to get speech simultaneously with playing
audio appears to be a function of the sound driver for the sound

	My Debian system at work has a SB Live card and will
play several sound streams at once including festival while
something else is playing.

	My Debian systems at home are running the stock Dell
sound chip set which is, I seem to recall, something like a
CS4231. All are using alsa drivers and those systems permit only
one stream at a time. This could, depending upon the way the
speech engine in Orca works, keep the ubuntu screen reader from
getting control of the card.


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