Emacspeak-13.0 (YellowLab) Unleashed!

For Immediate Release

San Jose, Calif., (November 23, 2000)
Emacspeak-2001: Speech-enabling The Semantic WWW
--Zero cost of ownership makes priceless software affordable!

EMACSPEAK --Complete Audio Desktop
Yellow Lab

Emacspeak Inc (NASDOG: ESPK) announces the immediate world-wide availability of Emacspeak 13.0 --a powerful audio desktop for leveraging today's evolving semantic WWW.

What Is It?

Emacspeak is a fully functional audio desktop that provides complete eyes-free access to all major 32 and 64 bit operating environments. By seamlessly blending all aspects of the Internet such as Web-surfing and electronic messaging into the audio desktop, Emacspeak enables speech access to local and remote information with a consistent and well-integrated user interface. A rich suite of task-oriented tools provides efficient speech-enabled access to the evolving semantic WWW. With support for the freely downloadable IBM ViaVoice TTS (Outloud) speech synthesis engine, Emacspeak now turns Linux into the first zero-cost Internet access solution for blind and visually impaired users.

Major Enhancements

  1. Graphical Desktop Environments
    1. Sawfish: Interface Sawfish window manager to TTS servers.
    2. Sample configuration for speech-enabling Sawfish.
  2. Sound Themes: Configurable themes for auditory icons.
  3. Streaming Media: Navigate media streams using FreeAmp and TRPlayer.
  4. Music: Single click access to MP3 playlists.
  5. XML and SGML
    1. Single keystroke browsing of XML documents.
    2. DTD authoring.
    3. XSL authoring.
  6. Desktop Calculator: Speech-enables a simple desktop calculator.
  7. Enhanced table browsing.
  8. Dictation: Speech-enabled interface to ViaVoice ASR for dictation.
  9. Generic Modes: Speech-enables javascript-mode, apache-generic-mode and friends.
  10. JDE and JDEBug: Fully speech-enables all JDEBug features.

See the NEWS file for additional details. The Emacspeak source distribution now includes a structured FAQ list designed to introduce new and old users to the Emacspeak environment.

Opening Doors To A Windows-Free Millennium

Emacspeak is now voluntarily bundled with all major Linux distributions. The integrity of the Emacspeak codebase is ensured by the reliable and secure Linux platform used to develop the software. Extensive studies have shown that thanks to these features, users consider Emacspeak to be absolutely priceless. Thanks to this wide-spread user demand, the present version is being made available at the same zero cost as earlier releases. At the same time, Emacspeak-2001 continues to innovate in the area of speech interaction and carries forward the well-established Open Source tradition of introducing user interface features that eventually show up in commercial user environments. On this theme, when recently challenged by a proponent of a crash-prone but well-marketed windowing system with the assertion Emacs is a system from the 70's, the creator of Emacspeak expressed surprize at the unusual candor manifest in the assertion that it would take popular idiot-proof interfaces until the year 2070 to catch up to where the Emacspeak audio desktop is today. Upon hearing this, the said proponent of the crash-prone system turned blue in the face (screen), crashed to the floor and refused to get booted (ever again).

Industry experts welcomed this refreshing breath of Courage Certainty and Clarity (CCC) at a time when users are reeling from the Fear Uncertainty and Doubt (FUD) unleashed by complex software systems backed by even more convoluted press releases.

Independent Test Results

Independent test results have proven that unlike some modern software, Emacspeak can be easily uninstalled without adversely affecting the continued performance of the computer. These same tests also revealed that once uninstalled, the user stopped functioning altogether.

Speaking with Aster Labrador, the creator of Emacspeak once pointed out that these results re-emphasize the user-centric design of Emacspeak; It is the user --and not the computer-- that stops functioning when Emacspeak is uninstalled!.

Note from Aster and Bubbles: (UnDoctored Videos Inc. is currently looking for volunteers to star in a video demonstrating such complete user failure).


Emacspeak-13.0 --codenamed YellowLab-- is the newest in a series of award-winning audio desktop releases from Emacspeak Inc. Emacspeak-12.0 --code named GoldenDog-- first leveraged the evolving sematnic WWW to provide task-oriented speech access to electronic information on the Internet. Emacspeak-11.0 --code named Aster-- went the final step in making Linux a zero-cost Internet access solution for blind and visually impaired users. Emacspeak-10.0 --(AKA Emacspeak-2000) code named WonderDog-- was the last in a series of award-winning software releases designed to make eyes-free computing a productive and pleasurable experience. Emacspeak-9.0 --(AKA Emacspeak 99) code named BlackLab-- continued to innovate in the areas of speech interaction and interactive accessibility. Emacspeak-8.0 --(AKA Emacspeak-98++) code named BlackDog-- was a major upgrade to the speech output extension to Emacs.

Emacspeak-95 (code named Illinois) was released as OpenSource on the Internet in May 1995 as the first complete speech interface to UNIX workstations. The subsequent release, Emacspeak-96 (code named Egypt) made available in May 1996 provided significant enhancements to the interface. Emacspeak-97 (Tennessee) went further in providing a true audio desktop. Emacspeak-98 integrated Internetworking into all aspects of the audio desktop to provide the first fully interactive speech-enabled WebTop.

Obtaining Emacspeak

Visit Emacspeak on the WWW at http://emacspeak.sourceforge.net or ftp://emacspeak.sourceforge.net/pub/emacspeak . You can visit Emacspeak at Cornell --You can also pick up emacspeak via anonymous ftp from ftp://ftp.cs.cornell.edu/pub/raman/emacspeak/.

Note that in my experience the the sourceforge site is more reliable than the Cornell site due to the operating system each site has chosen to run.

You can subscribe to the emacspeak mailing list emacspeak@cs.vassar.edu by sending mail to the list request address emacspeak-request@cs.vassar.edu. .

About Emacspeak

Based at Cornell (NY) http://cs.cornell.edu/home/raman --home to Auditory User Interfaces (AUI) on the WWW-- Emacspeak is mirrored world-wide by an international netwrok of software archives and bundled voluntarily with all major Linux distributions. On Monday, April 12, 1999, Emacspeak became part of the Smithsonian's Permanent Research Collection on Information Technology at the Smithsonian's National Museum of American History.

The Emacspeak mailing list is archived at Vassar --the home of the Emacspeak mailing list-- thanks to Greg Priest-Dorman, and provides a valuable knowledge base for new users.

About This Release

Press/Analyst Contact: Hubbell Labrador
According to Hubbell Labrador, the integrity of the Emacspeak codebase is assured; we are unaware of any changes made to the source code without our knowledge.

Windows-Free (WF) is a favorite battle-cry of The League Against Forced Fenestration (LAFF).
--see this overview of details on the ill-effects of Forced Fenestration.
CopyWrite )C( Aster and Hubbell Labrador. All Writes Reserved.
GoldenDog (DM), BlackDog (DM) etc. are Registered Dogmarks of Aster and Hubbell Labrador.
All other dogs belong to their respective owners.

Download Links



Previous Release Notes

Here is a link to the release notes for the previous major release, Emacspeak-12.0
Email: raman@cs.cornell.edu
Last modified: Sun Nov 19 09:23:23 2000