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IBM software allows users to talk to their MacsSpeech recognition now extends to Macintosh users, with IBM announcing the availability of ViaVoice Millenium Edition 1.0, a continuous speech recognition software.

The software is designed to make it easier for users to interact with their computer, according to marketing manager for Australia/New Zealand speech systems, Rita Francis.

"ViaVoice for Mac works by providing users with an intuitive, easy-to-use interface to perform everyday computer tasks," said Francis.

ViaVoice for Mac includes a 64,000 active word vocabulary and integrates Apple's text-to-speech function that lets Apple computers read text back to the user. The software operates on Mac OS 8.5.1, 8.6 and 9.0 and runs on iMac, PowerMac G3 and G4, and PowerBook G3 computers. It requires an audio input jack that is compatible with Andrea NC-71 microphones.

Retailing at around $199, the product is distributed through Conexus.www.apple.com.auXircom Portstation becomes Portable Sydney-based Advanced Portable Technologies is currently distributing Xircom's PortStation, a port expansion system for mobile computing users.

PortStation provides network, communications and peripheral device attachments via a single USB connection to Windows-based computers.

Modules provide users with a variety of networking and communications technologies as well as an easy way to attach a wide range of devices, including printers, digital cameras, mice and keyboards, according to Advanced Portable Technologies' managing director Felix Wong.

The system is made up of a series of interlocking modules, which snap together and enable users to access networks and add peripheral devices via a single USB connection.

Remote access tool costs one-tenth of competitionTWD Industries has launched Remote-Anything, a remote-control tool which the company has developed to compete with PC Anywhere or Laplink.

The company claims to offer 50KB tool costs around a tenth of the price of established remote access software, which is becoming increasingly popular in businesses ranging from SMEs to universities, banks and government agencies.

"Most of our clients are large corporate LAN owners who can't afford to purchase - or even install - PC Anywhere for all their machines, but wish they could," said TWD sales manager Paul Meisner.


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