Hello, who speaks to me?

The computer speaks understandable Dutch.

eSpeak, Festival, Say, Pico are examples of text to speech synthesis tools. My experience is that they work well with English, but as soon as they start talking Dutch they are almost impossible to understand.

The best is spd-say: it speaks Dutch and is easy to understand.

You can use spd-say in shell scripts, even if they are running in the background. Handy to keep yourself informed of everything from cron jobs that you have running. Ideas:
  • When a certain person tweets, he pronounces that tweet.
  • When a Whats App message comes in, he pronounces who it is from.
  • Timers that go off when you have to do your shopping (to-do list).
  • If it starts to rain while you have to exercise outside, your computer will notify you.
  • When the 3d printer is ready he says so. Or he tells you how far he is every half hour.
  • If you receive an email from your boss (or your wife), he will tell you to open your email program.
  • NS API: if there is a problem on the track and you have to go to work, your computer will tell you to check the NS app.
sudo apt install speech-dispatcher

Example of speaking in Dutch with a volume 40% lower than normal:
spd-say -l en -i -40 "Hello lovely people"

Script to say the number of files in a folder:
COUNT=$(ls | wc -l)
spd-say -l en -i 40 $COUNT

Type man spd-say for nice handy command line options.

Scripts are super useful because they take little time to create - they are often short - and they make life a lot easier.

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