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Speaking Commands But They Get Typed as Text?

Few things are more frustrating than to select the most important line in your document and say to Dragon NaturallySpeaking, “Italicize That” only to watch the whole line disappear and be replaced with the words italicize that. (A quick “Undo That” or two usually gets back what you lost.)

This kind of problem can happen for a number of reasons. Here are some things to check or try:

  • Is the command supposed to work in this application? If you're threatening to reprogram your computer with a sledgehammer, first confirm whether you have been dictating a Full Text Control command at an application that wasn’t enabled for it or a Natural Language command when Natural Language Commands weren’t available.

  • Get your pauses right. On multiword commands like Italicize That or Format That Arial Bold 16 Point, pause briefly before and after the command, but not at all in the middle.

  • Is NaturallySpeaking hearing you correctly? Watch the status box, or pay attention to what NaturallySpeaking types instead of doing what you want. If it hears “Italy sized hat,” then it isn't going to italicize anything. If this keeps happening, you should do Word training on the particular commands that NaturallySpeaking misinterprets.

  • Hold down the Control key. Holding down the Control key while you dictate is a way to say “Hey, assistant, this is a command I’m saying!” If this doesn’t work, it’s time to try to accomplish your purpose another way. For example, you might try saying, “Press Control I” instead of “Italicize That.”

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