Readout (2004-2006)

My Readout tools read out text via the speaker of a Windows computer. I provide the main application Universal-Readout as well as supplemental plugins for reading text in Microsoft Word (tested on Word 97-2003) and OpenOffice Writer (tested on OpenOffice 1.x).

Technically, the tools are based on the Microsoft Agent and Microsoft Speech API 4 (SAPI) technologies from the early 2000's. Although a lot of characters and voices have been created for them, I didn't find a lot of software actually making use of them. Which is why I wrote the Readout tools.


The entire setup of Universal-Readout, Microsoft Agent, and SAPI 4 has only been successfully tested on Windows XP. Microsoft has limited support for Agent and SAPI 4 in newer Windows versions, but there is an official hotfix for Windows 7 as well as an independent package for Windows 8.1+ and even an open-source reimplementation of the technology.

The original Microsoft Agent website is gone, but still has a copy with component, character, and voice downloads.