[bct] Fw: For Sabrena

  • From: Tim Cross <tcross@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: blindcooltech@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Thu, 3 Nov 2005 22:54:00 +1100

Hehehehe - it might be early there, but its late here - 10:45 and time
this little duck wondered off to bed to listen to an episode of X
minus 1.

Actually, you know what would be really good, if JAWS/Window-eyes
supported SSML, the speech synthesis markup language. I just thought
of that as it would be really great if I'd been able to write "X minus
1" with an appropriate voice and special effects like echo. Of course,
one day they will, but I'm not sure how far away that is. However,
imagine what fun we will all have and how much better listening to
text-to-speech will be when its possible to easily set voices and
voice characteristics. I've done some experiments with this using some
software speech synthesizes which support the SSML standard and its
quite useful - very much like having and audio equivelent to text
emphasis like bold, italic and underline etc. Emacspeak has used this
concept for over 10 years - the emacspeak author, T.V. Raman refered
to this as voice locking and its one reason I love emacspeak as my
interface to the computer. When I write software programs, different
elements of the text, like variable names or function names or
constants are spoken in a different voice. It gives some really useful
additional context. I've never understood why other screen readers
don't take advantage of the multiple voices available in most
synthesizes to do something similar.

Oh darn, now I've started thinking about something again. Thats really
going to make sleeping easier! Guess I had better have a small Cognac
before retiring - life can be so civilized sometimes!

Night all.

Tim

  
Dana Niswonger writes:
 > O K, my mistake.  My wife just corrected me, I had Willow for 10 years, she 
 > was 12 years old when we put her down.  It's early folks, give me a break on 
 > this one, lol!
 > Dana
 > 
 > ----- Original Message ----- 
 > From: Dana Niswonger 
 > To: blindcooltech@xxxxxxxxxxxxx 
 > Sent: Thursday, November 03, 2005 5:11 AM
 > Subject: [bct] For Sabrena
 > 
 > 
 > Good Morning Sabrina:
 > I wanted to take a minute and tell you about my cats and dog.  In 1985 I 
 > lived in Sacramento California.  Some of my disabled friends and I banded 
 > together, borrowing 1.5 million dollars from the National Cooperative Bank 
 > in Washington DC. and an additional $445,000 from the local area 
 > redevelopment authority, resulting in the building  of a 25 unit condo 
 > complex called 17th Street Commons.  Completely accessible and we all moved 
 > in July that year.  The very first day, my wife and me found a cat that had 
 > been hit by a car in the alley.  We took him to the vet and after surgery, 
 > four days in the animal hospital, plus $287.00's we brought Onyx home.  A 
 > similar set of circumstances brought us in touch with another stray cat in 
 > 1987 and thus, Shadow came home.  We have made three moves across country, 
 > taking the cats with us on two of them.  When we left California in 1994, I 
 > was unable to bring Onyx and Shadow with us to south Carolina.  Rejenia and 
 > I left at different times and I flew, not knowing of any way to transport 
 > them along.  I found them a good home with an elderly lady who loved them 
 > very much.  I arrived in SC. in November 1994.  In February, 1995 I got a 
 > call from the lady who had them now.  She ask me if I might want them back.  
 > She told me of her planned move to Texas and said that she would pay for 
 > them to be flown to us in SC.  I was overjoyed!  My boys were coming home.  
 > Perhaps, now I understand that old saying, "if you love something, set it 
 > free and if it comes back to you, it is really yours".  They arrived safely 
 > and we went on living together.  October 1995, I went to Florida to get my 
 > first guide dog, Willow.  When I returned a month later with her, I thought 
 > the cats would hate me forever.  They did for a while but they got over it, 
 > one of them did anyway.  Onyx and Willow became quite good friends and 
 > shared the same sofa.  Shadow never got over my betrayal and he and Willow 
 > never really got along.  One day in 1998, a day we will all never forget, 
 > something happened that still makes me smile.  It was a warm, still 
 > afternoon in June.  It was one of those days where you could feel something 
 > in the air.  Sure enough, about 3 PM. a tornado watch was issued by the 
 > national weather service.  We prepared, in the event that the watch became a 
 > warning.  At 4-35 PM, it did.  My wife was at work and I was very scared.  I 
 > have never experienced this type of weather before although I was in the 
 > major 7.4 Earth quake that hit Palm Springs California in 1992.  Taking sofa 
 > cushions, bed pillows and my radio, I made a fort in the bathroom, it being 
 > the only room in the house with no windows.  I took Willow in there with me, 
 > not really worried about the cats.  She just wouldn't stay there, she kept 
 > going back out to the living room, clearly wanting something that I was not 
 > able to understand.  She kept going over to the entertainment center and I 
 > couldn't figure out why.  Did she want her favorite movie or something?  I 
 > began searching around on this piece of furniture, finally feeling up on 
 > top.  There were Onyx and Shadow, fast a sleep in the warm sun coming in 
 > through a parting in the drapes.  I picked them up and took them into the 
 > bathroom with us and Willow settled down, happy that we were all together 
 > now.  Onyx lived to be 17, going to the Rainbow Bridge in 2002.  Shadow 
 > lived to be 17, going to the bridge in 2004.  I lost my Willow last year 
 > after only 12 years together, she had cancer and I had to put her down.  I 
 > don't mean to make you or anyone else sad, we all loved each other very much 
 > and are so glad to have miles of both video and audio tape of all of them.  
 > They will certainly play a big part in the special CD. I will be making for 
 > my wife about our life together.  I'm sure we will have pets again some day, 
 > I may even consider getting another guide dog but not right now.
 > Dana
 > <!DOCTYPE HTML PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN">
 > <HTML><HEAD>
 > <META http-equiv=Content-Type content="text/html; charset=iso-8859-1">
 > <META content="MSHTML 6.00.2900.2627" name=GENERATOR>
 > <STYLE></STYLE>
 > </HEAD>
 > <BODY bgColor=#ffffff>
 > <DIV><FONT face=Arial size=2>O K, my mistake.&nbsp; My wife just corrected 
 > me, I 
 > had Willow for 10 years, she was 12 years old when we put her down.&nbsp; 
 > It's 
 > early folks, give me a break on this one, lol!</FONT></DIV>
 > <DIV><FONT face=Arial size=2>Dana</FONT></DIV>
 > <DIV><FONT face=Arial size=2></FONT>&nbsp;</DIV>
 > <DIV style="FONT: 10pt arial">----- Original Message ----- 
 > <DIV style="BACKGROUND: #e4e4e4; font-color: black"><B>From:</B> <A 
 > title=dniswonger@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx 
 > href="mailto:dniswonger@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx";>Dana 
 > Niswonger</A> </DIV>
 > <DIV><B>To:</B> <A title=blindcooltech@xxxxxxxxxxxxx 
 > href="mailto:blindcooltech@xxxxxxxxxxxxx";>blindcooltech@xxxxxxxxxxxxx</A> 
 > </DIV>
 > <DIV><B>Sent:</B> Thursday, November 03, 2005 5:11 AM</DIV>
 > <DIV><B>Subject:</B> [bct] For Sabrena</DIV></DIV>
 > <DIV><BR></DIV>
 > <DIV><FONT face=Arial size=2>Good Morning Sabrina:</FONT></DIV>
 > <DIV><FONT face=Arial size=2>I wanted to take a minute and tell you about my 
 > cats and dog.&nbsp; In 1985 I lived in Sacramento California.&nbsp; Some of 
 > my 
 > disabled friends and I banded together, borrowing 1.5 million dollars from 
 > the 
 > National Cooperative Bank in Washington DC. and an additional $445,000 from 
 > the 
 > local area redevelopment authority, resulting in&nbsp;the building &nbsp;of 
 > a 25 
 > unit condo complex called 17th Street Commons.&nbsp; Completely accessible 
 > and 
 > we all moved in July that year.&nbsp; The very first day, my wife and me 
 > found a 
 > cat that had been hit by a car in the alley.&nbsp; We took him to the vet 
 > and 
 > after surgery, four days in the animal hospital, plus $287.00's we brought 
 > Onyx 
 > home.&nbsp; A similar set of circumstances brought us in touch with another 
 > stray cat in 1987 and thus, Shadow came home.&nbsp; We have 
 > made&nbsp;three&nbsp;moves across&nbsp;country, taking the cats with us on 
 > two 
 > of them.&nbsp; When we left California in 1994, I was unable to bring Onyx 
 > and 
 > Shadow with us to south Carolina.&nbsp;&nbsp;Rejenia and I&nbsp;left at 
 > different times and I flew, not knowing of any way to transport them 
 > along.&nbsp; I found them a good home with an elderly lady who loved them 
 > very 
 > much.&nbsp; I arrived in SC. in November 1994.&nbsp; In February, 1995 I got 
 > a 
 > call from the lady who had them now.&nbsp; She ask me if I might want them 
 > back.&nbsp; She told me of her planned move to Texas and said that she would 
 > pay 
 > for them to be flown to us in SC.&nbsp; I was overjoyed!&nbsp; My boys were 
 > coming home.&nbsp; Perhaps, now I understand that old saying, "if you love 
 > something, set it free and if it comes back to you, it is really 
 > yours".&nbsp; 
 > They arrived safely and we went on living together.&nbsp; October 1995, I 
 > went 
 > to Florida to get my first guide dog, Willow.&nbsp; When I returned a month 
 > later with her, I thought the cats would hate me forever.&nbsp; They did for 
 > a 
 > while but they got over it, one of them did anyway.&nbsp; Onyx and Willow 
 > became 
 > quite good friends and shared the same sofa.&nbsp; Shadow never got over my 
 > betrayal and he and Willow never really got along.&nbsp; One day in 1998, a 
 > day 
 > we will all never forget, something happened that still makes me 
 > smile.&nbsp; It 
 > was a warm, still afternoon in June.&nbsp; It was one of those days where 
 > you 
 > could feel something in the air.&nbsp; Sure enough, about 3 PM. a tornado 
 > watch 
 > was issued by the national weather service.&nbsp; We prepared, in the event 
 > that 
 > the watch became a warning.&nbsp; At 4-35 PM, it did.&nbsp; My wife was at 
 > work 
 > and I was very scared.&nbsp; I have never experienced this type of weather 
 > before although I was in the major 7.4 Earth quake that hit Palm Springs 
 > California in 1992.&nbsp; Taking sofa cushions, bed pillows and my radio, I 
 > made 
 > a fort in the bathroom, it being the only room in the house with no 
 > windows.&nbsp; I took Willow in there with me, not really worried about the 
 > cats.&nbsp; She just wouldn't stay there, she kept going back out to the 
 > living 
 > room, clearly wanting something that I was not able to understand.&nbsp; She 
 > kept going over to the entertainment center and I couldn't figure out 
 > why.&nbsp; 
 > Did she want her favorite movie or something?&nbsp; I began searching around 
 > on 
 > this piece of furniture, finally feeling up on top.&nbsp; There were Onyx 
 > and 
 > Shadow, fast a sleep in the warm sun coming in through a parting in the 
 > drapes.&nbsp; I picked them up and took them into the bathroom with us and 
 > Willow settled down,&nbsp;happy that we were all together now.&nbsp; Onyx 
 > lived 
 > to be 17, going to the Rainbow Bridge in 2002.&nbsp; Shadow lived to be 17, 
 > going to the bridge in 2004.&nbsp; I lost my Willow last year after only 12 
 > years together, she had cancer and I had to put her down.&nbsp; I don't mean 
 > to 
 > make you or anyone else sad, we all loved each other very much and are so 
 > glad 
 > to have miles of both video and audio tape of all of them.&nbsp; They will 
 > certainly play a big part in the special CD. I will be making for my wife 
 > about 
 > our life together.&nbsp; I'm sure we will have pets again some day, I may 
 > even 
 > consider getting another guide dog but not right now.</FONT></DIV>
 > <DIV><FONT face=Arial size=2>Dana</FONT></DIV>
 > <DIV><FONT face=Arial size=2></FONT>&nbsp;</DIV></BODY></HTML>

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