finally, speakup v-0.09

Kirk Reiser kirk at
Wed May 31 23:41:23 EDT 2000

Hi Folks:  Well, with the help of my wonderful beta testers I am
please to announce speakup v-0.09.  It is in the usual place in the
speakup area of the ftp site.  Here is the official announcement I
will post to all the usual mailing lists tomorrow.  So you all get
some lead time to break it.


Announcing the nineth alpha release, speakup v-0.09

Speakup is a screen review package for the Linux operating system.  It
allows you to hear all output directed to the console and move around
the screen using the typical screen review functions.

This is an alpha release which means it is by no means complete.

It is quite usable in it's current incarnation though, with the
blaring lack of cursor output support.  That means in an editor it
doesn't read each line as you move up and down the screen.  It tracks
the cursor so you just need to do a say current line but it doesn't do
it all by itself.  There is more to be said for cursor tracking and
speaking than meets the ear at first glance.

Speakup is a set of kernel patches which means you should have some
experience with kernel compiling.  It currently works on the Linux
kernels 2.2.7 and above.  The development kernels 2.3.99 and above are
also supported.  At this release we are at kernel 2.2.15 or
2.4.0-test2 development.

What's new in v-0.09?  Read the Changes file included in the tar
archive for full descriptions of my changes.  Speakup now has
accompanying utilities load_spk for loading and dumping its
configuration settings.  Speakup has a totally new device driver
mechanism which reduces the size of the driver code.  Speakup now
supports a number of various synthesizers including the DoubleTalk PC,
the LightTalk and DoubleTalk LT, the Accent PC and SA, the Artic
Transport, the Speakout, Dectalks external and Express, the Audapter,
the Braille 'N Speak and the Apollo2.  The current version is now
configurable within the make config system which will make
installation much more straight forward.

The new features are the new synth drivers and a number of significant
bug fixes.

There is a mailing list for speakup which you are welcome to join if
you are interested in it's on going development.  You can subscribe to
the mailing list by sending a message to speakup-request at with
a line in the body of the message like this:

The mailing list is currently a very low traffic forum so you probably
won't be overwhelmed with mail, although that is changing as more and
more blind people discover Linux.  You can also subscribe to the
mailing list by following the links on the web page.

The official speakup distribution point is  The ftp area includes all
of the current speakup files and utilities.  It also includes a
subdirectory containing older versions of speakup.  There is a new
directory tree which contains the base debian installation disks with
speakup already installed, as well as boot images for Redhat and
Slackware.  So if you have any of the supported synths you can down
load the disk images and install your entire system with speech.  The
installation disks currently contain speakup version-0.08.  There is
also a Linux kernel image "linux" which contains speakup and the
drivers usually included in the Debian kernels.  There are images
available for Slackware users as well.  We will hopefully have boot
disks and or kernel images available for the newly supported synths in
the near future..

We are in the middle of writing a set of web pages for speakup.  You
can check them out at  We would like to
hear what you think of them and will gladly consider recommendations
on their improvement.  We have what we consider a way cool logo for
the speakup project as well, it would be nice to hear your opinions on
that also.

Speakup is written by Kirk Reiser and Andy Berdan.  It is covered by
the GPL (GNU General Public License).

So, like I think that's about it.  If you have any questions feel free
to write me at kirk at  If you have any of the synths now
covered by speakup, we could really use your feedback.  If you are
just diing to get involved in a software project, boy do we have a
bridge to sell you! 'grin'


email: kirk at
phone: (519) 679-6845 (home)

More information about the Speakup mailing list