Tools: Teach Your Computer To Talk With ESpeak

Today’s tool is a speech synthesizer that works from your terminal. The software is called espeak, and what it does, is give you to ability to have your machine read out any plain text file, or text string that you enter in the terminal.

Head over to your Package Manager and do a search for, and then install espeak. Any additional package dependencies will be selected and installed as well.

Package Manager installing espeak

Package Manager installing espeak

Once installed, open a Terminal window and as with almost all Linux software, type it with the –help command to get a complete list of options. It this case: espeak –help

espeak running in Terminal

espeak running in Terminal

Using the built-in help, it’s easy to play with the speech settings to come up with a voice that you find easy to understand.

One of the things I use espeak for, is in conjunction with my Linux Alarm Clock to actually speak out alarms. “Wake Up!” or “Time for your appointment” etcetera are nice to hear, rather than a plain old alarm sound!

 

The sky is the limit with this tool, so experiment, play, and maybe you’ll come up with some unique applications for it!