OS X Mavericks: Use Dictation to create messages and documents

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Use Dictation to create messages and documents

Once you turn on dictation in Dictation & Speech preferences, you can dictate text anywhere you can type it by choosing Edit > Start Dictation.

Dictation option in the Edit menu

Turn on dictation

  1. Choose Apple menu > System Preferences, click Dictation & Speech, then click Dictation.
  2. Select On. If a prompt appears, click Enable Dictation.
  3. If you want to use Enhanced Dictation, select its checkbox.
    • If you use Enhanced Dictation, your Mac converts your words to text without sending any information to Apple. Enhanced Dictation lets you use dictation when you aren’t connected to the Internet.

      If you select this option, you’re prompted to download the language data your Mac needs for voice recognition. The amount of space required depends on the language.

    • If you don’t use Enhanced Dictation, your words are sent to Apple servers to be analyzed, helping your Mac understand what you’re saying. This method takes advantage of the latest language data.

      For more information, click About Dictation and Privacy.

  4. Choose your language and dialect from the Language pop-up menu.

    If your language isn’t listed, choose Customize, then select the language you want. You can download multiple languages.

Dictate text

  1. Place the insertion point where you want the dictated text to appear.
  2. Press the Fn (Function) key twice, or choose Edit > Start Dictation.
  3. When you see the microphone icon, speak your text.

    To insert a punctuation mark, such as a period or comma, say the name of the punctuation mark. You can also perform simple formatting tasks. For example, say “new line” or “new paragraph” to insert space between lines.

    If you’re using Enhanced Dictation, your text appears as you speak, and you can use the keyboard, mouse, or trackpad to edit as you go.

  4. If you downloaded multiple languages, use the pop-up menu under the microphone icon to switch languages as you dictate.
  5. When you’re done, press the Fn key or click the Done button.

    If you’re not using Enhanced Dictation, your spoken text appears at this time.

Unclear text is underlined in blue. If the text is wrong, click it and select an alternate, or type or dictate the correct text.

Choose a different shortcut

By default, you press the Fn (Function) key twice to start dictation. If you like, you can choose a different shortcut.

  1. Choose Apple menu > System Preferences, click Dictation & Speech, then click Dictation.
  2. Click the Shortcut pop-up menu, then choose a different shortcut.

    To create a shortcut that’s not in the list, choose Customize, then press the keys you want to use. You can press two or more keys to create your shortcut.

Published Date: Oct 20, 2015
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