greenSK.jpg (2125 bytes) SUITEKeys v.1.0 for MS Windows
Copyright © 1997-2003, College of Charleston and  University of Louisiana at Lafayette,
All Rights Reserved.

Release Notes: Updated June 25, 2004.

SUITEKeys provides access to a virtual keyboard and mouse through continuous speech input on MS Windows platforms.  See Overview for more information.  

See Quick Reference Guide for a list of available commands.  

To install SUITEKeys 1.0 you need to download and run the following files:

After installation, you may need to calibrate your microphone and train the speech engine (see installation instructions). 

The source code is available under the GNU General Public License.


Table of Contents

Overview
Credits
System Requirements
To Install
To Uninstall
License
Technical Support
Known Problems and Issues
    Installation Issues
    Platform Issues
    Speech Issues
Source Code


Overview

This file contains notes for SUITEKeys 1.0 for Microsoft Windows 95, 98, NT 4.0, and 2000/XP.

SUITEKeys is a continuous speech understanding interface for motor-impaired PC users. In contrast to other speech recognition systems, it provides access to all available PC functionality. This is accomplished by modeling speech interaction at the linguistic level of the physical keyboard and mouse.

For additional information on the SUITEKeys concept, see:

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Credits

SUITEKeys was developed at the College of Charleston and the University of Louisiana at Lafayette. Support for this project was provided by the Louisiana Board of Regents under grant LEQSF(1997-00)-RD-A-31.

The following individuals have significantly contributed to the development of this release: Rao Adavikolanu, Huong Do, Corey Gaudin, Garrick Hall, Alan Harkreader, Billy Jacobs, Jonathan Laughery, Eric Li, Adi Sakala, and Bill Manaris.

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System Requirements

Minimum system requirements for running SUITEKeys are as follows: Windows 95, 98, NT 4.0, or 2000/XP 

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To Install

To install the SUITEKeys 1.0 distribution (including the MS SAPI components) follow these steps:

Basic Installation:

1) Download the following files onto your hard drive: 

2) Run 'SetupSK.exe' by double-clicking on its icon. This will install SUITEKeys in a directory of your choice (e.g., "C:\Program Files\SUITEKeys 1.0"). After the installation, reboot your computer if necessary.

3) Run 'mscsrgl.exe' by double-clicking on its icon. This will install Microsoft Speech Recognition Engine 4.0 on your computer.

4) Run 'msttsf22L.exe' by double-clicking on its icon. This will install Microsoft Text-to-Speech Engine 4.0a on your computer.

5) Run 'spchapi.exe' by double-clicking on its icon. This will install Microsoft SAPI SDK 4.0 on your computer.

Configuration:

6) If your microphone has been calibrated, skip this step. If not, select the Start Menu item 'Programs/SUITEKeys 1.0/Microphone Setup Wizard'. You should calibrate your microphone before running SUITEKeys. The higher the quality (price) of the microphone, the better the performance of SUITEKeys.

This operation will also be available in SUITEKeys in the 'Customize\Calibrate Microphone' menu.

7) You are now ready to run SUITEKeys. When it starts, if the speech engine is not trained enough, it will give you an option to do so. You should train it at least once (about 10 min). However, SUITEKeys will function even without training, but with lower accuracy than normal. To do more training, use the 'Customize/Train Speech Engine' menu item. To improve accuracy, repeat this step at any time.

After completing the above steps, you should be ready to use SUITEKeys.

Note: Even after extensive training, there may still be some phrases that are difficult to recognize, such as "a" and "d". You can further improve recognition accuracy as follows:

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To Uninstall

To uninstall the complete SUITEKeys distribution (including the MS SAPI components) use the 'Add/Remove Programs' option of the Control Panel.  Remove the following:

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License

Copyright © 1997-2003, College of Charleston and  University of Louisiana at Lafayette,
All Rights Reserved.

SUITEKeys is distributed FREE of charge for non-profit use. You may copy and distribute verbatim copies of SUITEKeys as you receive it, in any medium, provided that you conspicuously and appropriately publish on each copy an appropriate copyright notice and disclaimer of warranty. You may NOT modify your copy or copies of SUITEKeys or any portion of it, nor attempt to disassemble it (unless permitted in writing by the developer).

Disclaimer of Warranty: THIS SOFTWARE AND THE ACCOMPANYING FILES ARE PROVIDED "AS IS" AND WITHOUT WARRANTIES AS TO PERFORMANCE OR ANY OTHER WARRANTIES WHETHER EXPRESSED OR IMPLIED.

This distribution includes the following components which are copyrighted by Microsoft Corporation:

Microsoft Licensing Restriction: In contrast to SUITEKeys, the two speech engines ('mscsrgl.exe', and 'msttss22L.exe') MAY NOT be redistributed by you to third parties, due to licensing restrictions imposed by Microsoft. However, these speech engines are available to download from this website.

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Technical Support

SUITEKeys has been developed as a service to the disabled community.  We would love to receive your feedback via email at feedback@suitekeys.org.  Please note that, since SUITEKeys is freeware, we do not have any resources for technical support.  Any questions you may have will be answered as time permits.

Also see Known Problems and Issues section below.

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Known Problems and Issues

This section discusses known problems and issues:

Installation Issues

Problem installing MFC42.dll: On some platforms, although all applications seem to be closed during installation, MFC42.dll is locked and cannot be updated.  If your current version of MFC42.dll is earlier than the one on the SUITEKeys distribution, this will affect installation and registering of certain SUITEKeys DLLs, such as NL.dll.  To remedy this problem, go into the Windows system directory and rename your version of MFC42.dll to something else.  Then re-install SUITEKeys. This should take care of the problem.

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Platform Issues

IBM ViaVoice - This only applies to PCs with IBM ViaVoice installed. At initialization, SUITEKeys polls all installed speech engines to find the one that best matches a certain profile.  This causes an error similar to the following:

"Run-time error '-2147467259 (80004005)' 
Automation error"

This is either a problem with how IBM ViaVoice implements the MS SAPI SDK or a bug in the MS SAPI SDK 4.0 that is exposed by ViaVoice when polled by SUITEKeys.  

We do not have a solution to this problem (other than uninstalling ViaVoice).

Dragon NaturallySpeaking - This only applies to PCs with Dragon NaturallySpeaking installed. At initialization, SUITEKeys polls all installed speech engines to find the one that best matches a certain profile. SUITEKeys picks the Microsoft speech recognition engine. If the system resources are low (too many applications running) when SUITEKeys is initializing, Dragon NaturallySpeaking will display the following warning message when polled:

"There is not enough virtual memory to run Dragon NaturallySpeaking. Enlarge your swap file or free some space on your hard drive."

This does not affect SUITEKeys. (However, you might want to shut down some applications to improve overall system performance.)

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Speech Issues

Background Noise - SUITEKeys requires a low-noise environment to work properly. Background sounds such as radio, TV, and conversations may confuse it. If you need to work in such an environment, you should try using a high-quality, noise-reducing, close-talk microphone (headset or earset), such as the QW-1000/ANC from Andrea Electronics.

Ambiguous Utterances - The SUITEKeys domain includes several utterances that sound alike, such as "a" and "k", "a" and "eight", "b" and "d", "p" and "t". As these are also confusable by humans, not much can be done to remedy this (at least, not in real time). Word pronunciation training helps somewhat, but in many cases you will have to use military alphabet, e.g., "alpha", "bravo", "Charlie", etc. (see Help file for a complete list).

Training Requirements - Although SUITEKeys will recognize most domain utterances "out-of-the-box", the user should perform all configuration steps given in the Installation section to improve recognition accuracy.

What can I say? - A common issue in speech user interfaces is how to "teach" users what utterances are available. SUITEKeys implements different dialog states -- different sets of utterances are recognized in different system states. To help the user map out the speech domain, we provide a context-sensitive "tip" mechanism that gives examples of valid utterances in each system state. When the user says "What can I say?", SUITEKeys opens a "tip" window with input samples. When the user speaks the next valid input, the tip window closes.

Progressive Disclosure - To get a full description of the possible utterances in any system state while the tip window is showing, the user can say "more help". This opens up a Help window with the complete speech model description. 

Sleep State and CPU Cycles - Even when in Sleep state, SUITEKeys has to listen for the "wake up" utterance. In other words, it is still uses CPU cycles. To stop it from using CPU cycles, put SUITEKeys in the 'Off' state. However, once in the Off state, you cannot turn it back on with speech -- only with the physical mouse.

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Source Code

The source code for the SUITEKeys project (67.8 MB) is available under the GNU General Public License.

Please note that this code has evolved from a research prototype for evaluating a particular architecture for speech user interfaces. This code was not developed with public release in mind.  However, instead of collecting "dust" on a hard drive, it is made available in hopes that someone could use it and/or expand on in the context of assistive technology -- free software for motor-impaired users; hence the GNU General Public License.  

This code is provided as is.  It is not intended as a tutorial in speech recognition. 

SUITEKeys has been developed as a service to the disabled community.  We would love to receive your feedback via email at feedback@suitekeys.org.  Please note that, since SUITEKeys is freeware, we do not have any resources for technical support.  Any questions you may have will be answered as time permits.

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