Filling out forms with voice recognition
Instead of typing data in to endless text fields, wouldn’t it be nice if you could offer users another way to fill out forms? Now, you can. Speech recognition is quickly becoming the next “hot” thing. iOS has Siri, Android Skyvi, and more applications are integrating speech recognition every day.
Speech recognition is not a new concept however; it has been around for quite some time. It used to be limited to the “ultra-techs,” or businesses with large budgets. But now, it is available to almost everyone. Now bloggers, webmasters, and everyone in between can use speech recognition in their website search engines. For this trick to work, the search engine on your desired page must be set to Google, and the user must be using Chrome. It does add a little something extra and exciting making your site a little more “high tech,” but more importantly, more useful for mobile users who struggle to type out tiny letters.
How does it work?
It relies on HTML Speech Input API. Do not let the name fool you; it is pretty easy to set up. You only need to add one piece of HTML code to the field where your website search engine would normally go. There is nothing to install, or no serious programming involved. The only other thing you will need is a microphone.
If you want to try it, remember, you need to use Chrome, go to your site’s search engine code area, delete what is there, and replace it with the following:
Save everything and exit. Then you can return to your page in the Chrome browser. If everything is working correctly, you should see a microphone in the corner of the search engine box. Click that icon and you will be able to speak your search terms.
The recorded audio is sent to speech servers for transcription, after which the text is typed out for you. It really is that simple; a great little tool for searching endless amounts of data, filling out long forms, or just to play around with in your free time. If you are using Chrome, give this plug-in a try and see what you think. There is a demo of the voice recognition if you would like to try it before changing your settings.