Mac Voice

Hello Mac users,

I can’t seem to find this question answered anywhere?

In the windows forums, there is a need for ‘text’ to speech: for prof reading of your work.
I thought I’d look if that feature is available on the Mac: And guess what?

I can’t find it: :unamused:

:question: Q:) Does the Mac version of scrivener, read text from the screen?

Now, I know you can select a block of text; and that will be read out, but its not convivial to the flow of words to the editor.
… It’s why Word is so great to work with.
[The TXT Readers, do just that!]

Hoping you MAC’s can answer my question.


Place cursor at beginning of text and then just go to Edit/Speech/Start Speaking

You should be all set. :smiley:

It’s built in to the Mac OS, but you seem to indicate that you are aware of that (when you say, “I know you can select a block of text; and that will be read out”). I am not sure what you mean by, “its not convivial to the flow of words to the editor.” Can you explain? It may be that there are other ways of using the text-to-speech features of the Mac, or perhaps you might want to consider a third party app like Narrator by Mariner Software.

How does the built-in system not meet your needs?
Also, what does Word do differently in relation to text-to-speech? :question:

Hello nom and garrickstaggs.

  • And thank-you for your speedy reply.

Ready for this?

  • I’m a windows user!

All you just read above : Is the restriction and frustration I have with the operating system, and the programmes written for it. Scrivener for windows - doesn’t read text from the screen; as is.

You have to select the text : Then copy it to the clipboard, and only then: using a screen reader, will your text be read out to you.

  • Not intuitive, not at all.

Word - for Windows [- with a Bolt on -] Will achieve what you guys seem to be able to do directly in scrivener.
If that’s the case; then I am about to ditch this crappy OS, and take the plunge;

… And finally buy a MAC:

I’m so enamoured by Scrivener for my writing, that I can’t praise it enough : And that’s the windows version, that’s apparently light years behind you chaps and your Macs.

Is that the case? - Text is simply read from the Scrivener editor screen?

If it is! - Then I’m off to the shops and get one.
Now All I have to do.

  • Is work out what model, will meet my modest needs.

Thanks again chaps.

Yes, that is indeed the case. Much of what Scrivener does on the Mac is provided for by the operating system—such as integrated spelling and grammar checking (which is so pervasive it even happens in browser search fields) system-wide auto-completion and symbol substitution (smart quotes, etc.), text to speech and speech to text, 99% of the rich text editing features in the software are just from OS X, high quality typography, and advanced font rendering, high quality PDF output from any program, etc etc. Not all of these things may be needed by everyone, for sure, but they are just there, which means programmers on the Mac can focus on providing features above and beyond the basics and can provide advanced features like grammar checking or high-quality text to speech synthesis, that would otherwise be impossible for any single shareware developer to implement.

Part of why the Windows version must proceed at a slower pace is because they are having to re-invent features from scratch. The Windows project is much, much bigger than most people realise. It’s a mammoth project. We want to do it, and we are thrilled to be able to provide Scrivener to people on the PC as well as Linux, but it’s a big thankless job most of the time.

I don’t mean to portray it as all roses over here. There are definitely issues with the Mac, such as the fact that they’ve largely abandoned development on the text engine. It has bugs from 2005 and sometimes it seems like Apple does not have anyone left that understands how the text engine is put together. They’ve become increasingly focussed on shallow, trendy features like Facebook widgets and bad re-inventions of virtual desktops or whatever variety of cheap-to-code features they can trot about once a year to sell their download-only OS updates. There is evidence that OS X’s development has been siphoned off to their telephone division. There are problems on the Mac right now. Don’t jump over here thinking it’s the answer to everything. On the other hand Windows isn’t exactly headed in a good direction either, with the latest OS seemingly more optimised for their quasi-computer tablet than the millions of workstations that made them rich. Yeah, most of the woes facing Mac development these days are common to OS development in general in the industry, as the “common person” discovers they don’t need a full workstation to check their e-mail and do the occasional budget on a spreadsheet. They can do this with a tablet just fine. That will continue to leave workstation users with fewer resources from the corporations that exist primarily just to make money (Apple & Microsoft: equally guilty). Apple wants to see a future where most people buy “apps” for their appliances, and you will see evidence of that in their latest OS versions, not to mention the focus and direction of the company as a whole.

But, we are in that twilight era right now, and in that twilight we can still see the day from when Mac development was innovative, feverish and had great promise for the future. That’s all kind of stagnated, buried under the obligation of supporting every other platform under the sun, but like I say, for a little while now, you can still benefit from the golden age, and it was enough of one that it is still worth consideration, even if the future may not be (and hey, maybe it will be, we don’t know for sure).

… And all those functions are what I want.
Been looking for them for years, and all the time they were right under my nose. {GRRRRR!}

I’ve seen some of the troll responses in the windows forums. More people love this programme, than those idiots that call it a false god : Leading fools into hell.

… Ignore the Plonkers, for they are fools that will never be happy : Even if if you paid them to use your most excellent Out-liner / Character creator / Location editor.

  • These three functions alone, make this program the best on the market.

Yes, I’ve read all about that since last night when I began my research on what a MAC is all about.
… But at least the Apple desktop, still looks like, well a desktop! - Unlike Microsoft’s appalling upgrade to its OS: I’m still running XP on my main machine, didn’t bother with VISTA: Got Win 7 on my portable, and each upgrade has caused my major problems.

  • The Apple OS, and Basic Features!! - Are exactly what I’m looking for.


  • I’ll jump on the band wagon, of the golden age:

Read the chats in this forum on.
Good time to buy a Mac
And Bad time to Buy a Mac: - Interesting reading.

… Ordered a referb Net-book Air this morning.
13" display.
4 gig of Ram and a 128Gb hard drive.
The 12 hour of use! - Will be an interesting claim to test.
The keyboard may take some getting used to.
… But all in all, it looks promising.

Brought it for £719:00 including local taxes.

($1,115.38) - Could get it for $899, but I don’t live in the states and that’s the price that the Apple store, in the UK charges. Apple like the rest of them, like to rip its customers off!

  • But! - Ho hum, that’s big business for you!

When my new toy arrives, I’ll download (and buy a new licence) : It’s not a lot, but its my way of supporting what you guys are doing.

  • Really am impressed with Scrivener.


Well! Welcome to the club. I think you will find from a hardware and form factor standpoint that the MacBook Air is just about as close to perfect as can be for a writer. It’s not a super powerful computer, but it’s just fast enough to be transparent for all of the things a writer needs to do. It’s light, the keyboard is high quality, the battery lasts all day and the screen is large enough to work comfortably with Scrivener.

As for the OS, you may need to give it some time. Some people take to it immediately, but depending on how many power tricks you are used to with Windows, you may find the myriad small differences a bit difficult to take to. It took me about a year to really get comfortable with the Mac, coming from Linux, and I hated it most of the time. :slight_smile: I’d just sit and curse at my computer all day because it wasn’t doing what I expected with menus and whatnot. But I’m glad I pushed through because ultimately I’ve thoroughly enjoyed having been on the Mac platform for this past decade or so.

Thanks! And I do try. We obviously feel the same way as you, that what we have on Windows right now is the core utility. That’s what we want to give people. We wouldn’t be selling the software if we felt that the core capabilities were not there.

Anyway, thanks for your (soon to be) double support of the project! I hope you enjoy your new Mac and find it a productive platform.

Ah, it all makes sense.

Welcome to the world of light and honey and rainbow unicorns. :wink:

AmberV’s warning about the transition is apt. While most of the surface features are similar between the systems (think of the Command key as equivalent to Windows’ Control key and you’re well on the way) there are always some aspects that trip us. For me, it was keyboard navigation of dialogue boxes (editable in System preferences) that tripped me up for a long time. I still find that I have to use the mouse/trackpad more on the Mac than Windows, and it still irritates me occasionally.

The flip side is that the mouse/trackpad can do so much more on the Mac than Windows. Here’s an example that I use almost every day: create a document in (say) Word and go to save it - a dialogue box opens; meanwhile, in the Finder, the folder you want is already open; simply, and literally, drag that folder into Word’s Save dialogue box and that will become the folder where the Word document is saved. So simple, so helpful, so logical.

Enjoy your new tool. I suspect you will be seriously impressed with its speed (I still marvel at how quickly the MacBook Airs start up - truly remarkable).