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Re: Can someone read these line "aloud"

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  • Subject: [mg127052] Re: Can someone read these line "aloud"
  • From: Richard Fateman <fateman at>
  • Date: Wed, 27 Jun 2012 04:09:05 -0400 (EDT)
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  • References: <jsbt1n$6on$>

On 6/26/2012 1:48 AM, McHale, Paul wrote:
> Can anyone help me with proper Wolfram "lingo"?

  If you were reading these aloud to someone, what words would you use?

For instance. I have heard "/; " or "/." is pronounced "given that".

  Not sure which.  Is there any list of the verbal equivalents?

Well, which is it? I think neither reflects the proper meaning
of rule application etc. So my answer is: neither .

> list /. x_ :> SuperStar[x] /; x > 9


  ReplaceAll of list   and  RuleDelayed  of Pattern of x blank and 
Condition of SuperStar of x when Greater of x and 9.

This is yet another reason to use FullForm, from which
the above is a trivial modification.   You can have a program
speak this out loud in some browsers equipped suitably.

or see tts  (text to speech) add-ons for implementation.

I think you need to decide how to vocalize the mathematical expression
f(x,y)   or  Mathematica f[x,y].

It could be f of x and y     or   for special forms you might
use different filler words.

Thus Table{q,{i,a,b}] would by default be

Table of q and list i and a and b,  but could be improved as, say,
Table of q using iteration for i from a to b.

If you want to speak


you need to be able to distinguish
Times of a and Plus of b and c and d

Times of a and Plus of b and c and d
perhaps by
Times of a and Plus of b and c EndPlus and d.

You could also try to improve some of the other vocalizations from the 
default, even going so far as to vocalize Times[a,b]
as "a times b".
and a*(b+c)*d as a times quantity b plus c end times d.

You may be disappointed that I haven't told you how to pronounce /; and 
:>, but I think that kind of pales in comparison to the fact that you
can't unambiguously speak expressions with ordinary arithmetic without
some help.

There is a modest literature on TTS for math, starting from the
Aster program.

  I think that the default TTS program for Mathematica, assuming a
speech API is available, would be less than 1/3 a page of code.

An alternative is of course to spell everything out like
ay asterisk open paren bee plus see plus dee close paren slash dot x 
blank right arrow blah blah.

There are worse alternatives like using MathML, OpenMath, ...



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