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Speech-Dispatcher, Orca and MUlti-Channel Sounds!

From: Anthony Sales
Subject: Speech-Dispatcher, Orca and MUlti-Channel Sounds!
Date: Wed, 8 Apr 2009 20:53:10 +0100

I have finally managed to get speech-dispatcher to work on Vinux(Ubuntu 8.10)
without losing the multi-channel sound capabilities. The final peice of the
jigsaw puzzle fell into place when I was experimenting with Debian Lenny and
managed to get speech-dispatcher working properly. I realised that I hadn't
been doing anything wrong at all but I hadn't really understood the
difference between speech-dispatcher running in user mode and as a system
service. What caused this was an error which seems to have crept into
spd-conf and my failure to understand the difference bwteen the two modes.
For some reason the spd-conf supplied in the Ubuntu 8.10 repositories set the
syntheziser port to 6561 for user mode and 6560 for running as a service, and
it should be the other way around. Because I didn't understand the difference
between the two modes I had been setting up speech-dispatcher in user mode
but then using init.d to start it as a service instead of using the
speech-dispatcher -d command. Given these two school boy errors I was never
going to get it to work! So for anyone who wants to try this at home here is
a step by step guide to getting speech-dispatcher working on Ubuntu 8.10 with
multi-channel sound support.

1. Run 'sudo apt-get install speech-dispatcher python-speechd' in a terminal

2. Once installed run 'spd-conf' in the same terminal.

3. Accept all of the default options except type 'pulse' for the sound server
and '6560' for the synthesizer port.

4. Speech-dispatcher should then speak if everything is going to plan!

5. Use the 'speech-dispatcher -d' command to start up speech-dispatcher as a

6. Open the Orca preferences window and select speech-dispatcher as the
speech synthesizer and click apply.

7. Orca should now be a lot more snappy and responsive.

8. Finally open the Session Manager from the preferences menu, create a new
entry called speech-dispatcher and type 'speech-dispatcher -d' as the
command, then reboot and enjoy you new snappier speech!

9. If you want to use espeak with YASR, you can then edit the
/etc/yasr/yasr.conf file by commenting out the default Eflite synthesizer and
uncomment the speech-dispatcher  and corresponding synthesizer port entries.



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