Long after I’ve written the first version of the VoiceBrowsing Toolbar for Internet Explorer, it’s about time to mention it here. Once surprised by not finding a comfortable browser plugin that enables navigation using voice commands, I’ve decided to implement one. To make things simple I’ve relied on the Microsoft Speech API accessible in Windows Vista and above through the .NET framework.
I’ve started with writing a .NET voice recognition engine that provides a registration and notification interface. Given a dictionary of phrases to be recognized it invokes a callback function provided by the user. A small Internet Explorer toolbar makes it usable for navigating to websites or performing common operations such as browsing back, forward or going to the homepage. The plugin is configurable and lets the user specify keywords (trigger phrases) and the URL that she would like to go to once that keyword is recognized by the speech recognition engine.
The plugin is currently available only for Internet Explorer, starting with version 6, on Windows Vista and above. In the future I plan to implement Firefox and Chrome extensions based on the same speech technology.
It’s available for download from www.voicebrowinsg.net .
Comments and suggestions for further development would be highly appreciated.