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How To Select Text with NaturallySpeaking

Whether you write your documents using a keyboard, or dictate them using Dragon NaturallySpeaking, from time to time you’re probably going to want to insert new text into the middle of the document, delete some text, rearrange a few paragraphs, and rewrite a sentence here and there. You can select text using Dragon NaturallySpeaking in three ways:

  • Select text near the cursor by using commands like “Select Next Two Characters.”

  • Select text by saying it, as in “Select we’ll always have Paris.”

  • Select a large block of text by saying the beginning and the end, as in “Select once upon a time through lived happily ever after.”

Commands for Selecting Text
First Word Second Word Third Word Fourth Word
Select Next, Previous 1 – 20 Characters, Words, Paragraphs
Select <text>
Select Again
Select <text> Through <text>
Selecting text near the cursor

To select text immediately before or after the current location of the cursor, use the Select command in a four-word sentence of this form: Select, followed by a direction (Next or Previous), followed by a number (1 – 20), followed by a unit (Characters, Words, or Paragraphs). For example:

  • “Select Next Seven Words”

  • “Select Previous Three Paragraphs”

If you want to select only one character, word, or paragraph, leave the number out of the sentence, as in “Select Next Character” or “Select Previous Word.

You can use Back or Last as synonyms for Previous, and Forward as a synonym for Next.

Selecting text by saying it

If text is visible on your screen, you can select it by saying, “Select” and then saying the text you want to select. For example, suppose Shakespeare is editing the file Hamlet.doc, and the phrase “To be or not to be” is visible. He can select the phrase by saying, “Select to be or not to be.”

Sometimes, the phrase you select occurs several times in the current window. Which occurrence gets selected? NaturallySpeaking will display numbers next to the text and you can say, “Choose <number>if you want to remove all the offending occurrences.

Selecting more text than you want to say

When you want to select a large block of text, you don’t want to have to repeat all of it just to tell NaturallySpeaking where it is. NaturallySpeaking provides a special command for this purpose: Select . . . Through.

Pick a word or two at the beginning of the selection and a word or two at the end, and then tell NaturallySpeaking to select everything in between by saying, “Select <beginning text> Through <end text>.” For example, if your NaturallySpeaking window contains the Pledge of Allegiance, you can select it all by saying, “Select I pledge allegiance Through justice for all.”

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