Since Lion each Mac has had the ability to convert voice to text and, in a small way, replace applications like Dragon Dictate. But, as Apple seems intent on hiding the power of its software it looks for all the world like it is a one trick pony. With Dragon you can highlight text, move around the document and format all with your voice while Apple’s built in Dictation is limited to text input only. Or is it?
Hidden in the Accessibility System Preferences app is a list of commands that can be given to the Mac via your voice instantly making this built in voice dictation system 1000% more useful.
To start you’ll need to activate Dictation and then open TextEdit (or any word processor really) and dictate a message.
Then, click on the Apple menu and choose System Preferences. Click on Accessibility and scroll down to Dictation.
Click on Dictation Commands… and you can see what is on offer and clicking on any of them will give you an example of how to phrase it.
Keeping it open helped me get used to all the commands and how they needed to be phrased… at least in the beginning.