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This text-to-speech Firefox add-on works well but the bookmarklet version is even better!

Surprisingly, I don't think we've covered text-to-speech here on Download Squad before -- at least not in the browser! Perhaps that's because it's a bit chicken-and-egg: for a blind person to find out about a text-to-speech add-on, he would need the add-on. Damn paradoxes.

Anyway, I had a play with two solutions today, both based on vozMe's text-to-speech API. The first is a Firefox add-on that sneakily asks for contributions while not even crediting vozMe! Disgusting -- but still, the add-on works well. You can select blocks of text and convert it via the right-click context menu, or click the speaker in the bottom right corner of the browser. Right-clicking the speaker gives you a lot of options too: there are a lot of international languages available, and male or female voices!

The second solution, vozMe's own bookmarklet, is better for quick-and-dirty work. Bookmarklets are both more efficient and work with every browser. If you click through the languages in the top right corner, you can also create male/female bookmarklets for a variety of languages.

It's worth noting that the Firefox add-on also lets you download an MP3 of your text-to-speech clip! Also, the transliteration isn't very good -- some of vozMe's attempts at pronouncing English placenames were dire to say the least.
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Tags: add-on, api, bookmarklet, firefox, language, text to speech, TextToSpeech, translation, vozme

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