You might have read in the press today a few places that Windows Vista Beta 1 includes Speech Recognition. It's true. It does. [:)]

The news articles are getting their quotes from the Microsoft Windows Vista Pre-Release (Beta 1) Privacy Statement.

Here's what it says (in part):

Speech Recognizer

What This Feature Does:

This feature provides speech recognition within Windows and any applications that choose to use it. Speech recognition by the Microsoft Speech Recognizer will increase in accuracy by learning how a person uses the language, i.e. the words they like to use, the way they use grammar, and the frequency distribution of words.

Information Collected, Processed, or Transmitted:

The text you have authored in documents on your system is collected and stored typically in 3-word fragments, along with corrections you make while using speech to dictate. This is stored in your personal speech profile. No data is sent to Microsoft.

Use of Information:

Microsoft Speech Recognizer learns about your language use by analyzing text that you have authored. In addition, analysis is done on corrections you make while using speech to dictate, and probability weightings are determined for the words you use. This allows more accurate speech recognition.

Choice/Control:

All users may enable or disable this feature. It is enabled by default. You may delete your speech profile by opening up the Speech Control Panel, and clicking on the "Delete" button in the "Recognition Profiles" section of the "Speech Recognition" tab. Speech Profiles are stored for each user and users are not able to access the profiles of other users on the machine. Administrators can access any profile.

Although that's not a terrible compelling description of what's in the OS, it is the first official statement that Speech Recognition is in the operating system. It does so much more than that ... It is exciting to finally see the work of so many finally make it out to real users.

Stay tuned to my blog in the next couple weeks for more information on Speech Recognition features in Windows Vista Beta 1.

--rob