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The Basics for Getting Started with Windows Speech Recognition and Trigram MedTopics:

Many users would like a "plug and play" speech recognition software.  One important thing to remember is that although all of the powerful features we look for in a speech recognition software  are built in to Windows Speech Recognition, we must first and foremost train the software to our unique voices.  This includes any accents, speech tendencies and even speech impediments.  Once the software is trained to our speech habits,we can add in our Medical Vocabulary from Trigram Technology.  With these two essential steps finished, we can then begin using Windows Speech Recognition to it's full potential.  There are also additional add-ons that we can add to WSR in order to optimize our experience, and this comes in the form of Macros.  Macros, in general, extend the usefulness of the speech recognition capabilities in any voice recognition software. Users can create powerful macros that are triggered by spoken commands which can perform a series of tasks from as simple as inserting your mailing address to as complex as providing a completely different speech interaction within applications.  For example, rather than dictating our name, company, address and phone number every time we want to append our "signature" at the end of a document, we can simply say "signature,"and the macro will do the rest.  You can download the macro capability from windows here and you can read more about macros and view a list of system requirements and a general how-to here.

What you need:

  • A computer with Microsoft's Vista or Windows 7 Operating System (any edition will do, 32-bit or 64-bit too)!
  • Microphone; Most microphones built as headsets tend to be compatible, especially if you've used them for any reason with your Microsoft Vista or Windows 7 computer before. For a list of our microphones that we provide, click here.
  • Trigram Technology Medical Vocabulary, MedTopics (which can be added at any point during or after the setup).
  • A little patience and understanding.

It's a good idea to familiarize yourself with Windows Speech Recognition by taking the tutorial.  If you are already familiar with voice commands in speech recognition software, then you may want to simply peruse the tutorial.  Once you're done with that, you should set up your microphone to work with your computer.  Your almost done.  All you need to do is train your computer to better understand YOU.  Now, remember, everyone's voice and speech patterns are unique.  So you must train your computer for YOU.  We then simply need to run the executable file to install the Trigram Technology MedTopics Medical Vocabulary after purchasing it here, and finally, you're ready to begin using your voice to control your computer!


1.  Go to your Control Panel and Click on the Speech Recognition icon.  (Start Button--> Control Panel).





2.  You can either take a short tutorial on Speech Recognition, or click on "Setup Microphone."



3.Choose the type of microphone you would like to setup and click Next.


4. Now, this says to place the microphone about an inch from your mouth, but I've found it to be more accurate as well as comfortable if it is more like 3 to 4 inches away from your mouth. Don't forget to click Next.


5.  Just as logical as it looks, you want your volume meter to be some where near the middle of the green region.  Results vary depending on the volume of your voice, the ambiant noise in the background,  and the type of microphone you have.  As long as it's in the green, I would be satisfied that it'll work just fine.  Once you're satisfied click Next.


6. In this step, the process is fairly simple.  You can train as much or as little as you'd like at this moment, but my advice is to spend as much time training your computer as possible.  You will be prompted a number of times to decide whether or not to continue training, please do as much as possible!  At any point you can always go back to the 2nd screen (the #2 screen shot; Start--> Control Panel--> Speech Recognition), and choose "Train your computer to better understand you."


7.  Now that we have Windows Speech Recognition setup to our microphone and trained to our voices, we simply run the executable file that we purchased from  When we are doing so, we will be prompted to choose a specialty-specific vocabulary.  Remember to only choose the one that best fits your specialty!  An important thing to remember is that Windows will always default to it's built in Dictation Topic (vocabulary), which is Narrative.  It may be a bit annoying, but we have to remember to change the Dictation Topic each time we start Windows Speech Recognition.  To do so, simply start Speech Recognition and right-click the floating menu.  Go to Dictation Topic and choose your Trigram Technology Medical Specialty.  It will be labeled as "TrigramTech (My Specialty)."  And voila!  We now have a fully operational Speech Recognition software with our Medical Specialty-Specific Vocabulary!



8.  Here's a Snippet of the process for selecting the correct Dictation Topic...something we should get very used to.  Our manufacturer has spoken to Microsoft about this issue, and are hoping for a fix in a near future upgrade!


Dictation Topic