Gentoo Archives: gentoo-accessibility

From: Whitley CTR Cecil H <WhitleyCH.ctr@××××××××××××××××.mil>
To: "'gentoo-accessibility@l.g.o'" <gentoo-accessibility@l.g.o>
Subject: [gentoo-accessibility] YAVP
Date: Fri, 17 Sep 2004 12:44:07
Anyone who hangs out at any of the should recognize the
subject line.  I've gotten 2004.2 up and running with
flite/speech-dispatcher/speechd-up and of course speakup!  Now just before
networking comes up my computer starts talking with software speech.  I will
post my experience here so that others may follow with less pain.  I do not
cover installing alsa, but I do mention it and include a couple critical

emerge flite (or the software synth of your choice, ymmv)
emerge speech-dispatcher
mkdir /etc/portage (if it doesn't exist)
echo "app-accessibility/speechd-up ~x86" > /etc/portage/package.keywords
(that unmasks speechd-up, optionally package.unmask may work now if the
keyword has been removed)
*important* make sure your kernel was compiled with softsynth available to
speakup as a loadable module)
mknod /dev/softsynth c 10 26 
(defaults for speakup as it is currently)

Now, a brief explaination before I go into the next steps.  flite and
speech-dispatcher need to be started, speakup needs to be set to use the
sftsyn synthesizer and finally speechd_up needs to be started.  To make it
simple to start flite, I "borrowed" the speech-dispatcher script in
/etc/init.d.  Edit it and basically replace speech-dispatcher (and various
flavors thereof) with flite (or possibly the synth of your choice).  I named
this modified script fli.  The name is important because scripts in init.d
are started in alphabetical order, with an exception.  I can post my fli
script here, if anyone is interested.  Now, back to procedures.  I should
also include a note on alsa here.  In short, you will need to have alsa (or
oss?) configured.  Use amixer to set your channels volume and to unmute
**important** them.  Then save your mixer settings using /usr/sbin/alsactl

rc-update add alsasound boot
(Loads back mixer settings, etc, starts sound, sorta)
rc-update add speech-dispatcher boot
(runs speech dispatcher during boot phase)
rc-update add fli boot
(ditto for fli, see above note)
rc-update add speechd-up default
(puts speechd-up in the "default" scripts)

As a last step you need to create an entry in your boot loader configuration
to pass speakup_synth=sftsyn so that speakup will use the software
synthesizer.  Good luck!


Cecil Whitley

P.s. John, is there any problem with the fli script above?  It works for me
but admittedly hasn't been stressed tested (fli stop, fli restart haven't
been tried).  I don't have the actual script here, but I can mail it to you
from home later.