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LAN-TECH is an certified reseller of Dragon NaturallySpeaking.

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Dragon NaturallySpeaking product information

Customer Profile

Dragon NaturallySpeaking Profile

Ed Kelly

Industry: Patent Law

Product: Dragon NaturallySpeaking

Primary Use: Creating letters and memos for patent review

Significant Benefits: Producing documents in 1/3 the time required by the dictation/transcription procedure. Create finished documents with minimal secretarial support.

Edward Kelly is a patent attorney with the law firm of Foley, Hoag & Eliot, a Boston firm of about 200 attorneys. Much of his time is spent reviewing patent and trademark documents, and searching for differences between new technologies and existing products. He reads with great care, highlighter in hand, before creating letters and memos summarizing his findings. Recently Kelly has cut his time for writing memos in half - thanks to Dragon NaturallySpeaking.

"In the past, I usually had to handle a document several times before writing a response," Kelly explains. "It's very distracting to put down the highlighter, turn away from the document you're reading and type on the keyboard." Even though Kelly types quite well, the constant starting and stopping was a real drain on his efficiency.

Documents In Half the Time

"Using Dragon NaturallySpeaking, I only need to examine a document once," he continues. "Everything flows smoothly - I just speak into the microphone as thoughts come to me, focusing on my work, not on the mechanics of getting words into the computer. I've used other speech recognition products, but never anything like this." Without the distraction of the keyboard, Kelly is able to draft his remarks as he reads. Composing text could not be easier.

"If in the past it took twenty minutes to examine a patent and type up my notes - now I can do it in ten ," Kelly said. A similar ratio applies when he dictates correspondence - again, the job gets done in about one half of the time.

Speaking Naturally is Liberating

"NaturallySpeaking is just a blast to use. Entering text into the computer used to be a chore - now it's fun." Kelly has discovered how easy it is to be more productive when speaking naturally. He also finds something very liberating about speaking into the headset in a normal voice and seeing his words appear on the screen.

Making this freedom possible is Dragon NaturallySpeaking's accuracy and extensive vocabulary. "If I speak normally, it rarely makes a mistake " Kelly says. "I don't even look at what is on the screen while I'm dictating."

The Vocabulary You Need

Dragon NaturallySpeaking comes with an active vocabulary of 30,000 words and a total vocabulary of 230,000 words. When Kelly finds it necessary to add a new word, he simply has to say it and spell it once. There's also the Vocabulary Builder tool, which searches documents for new words and adds them to the vocabulary if they are used frequently.

Efficiency and Teamwork

Kelly also finds Dragon NaturallySpeaking much more efficient than that old stand-by, the dictation machine. "Secretaries hate transcribing and it always seems to end up as the lowest priority." Now Kelly and his secretary work as a team. "I compose directly into the system, send the draft to Carmella and she inputs it into the correct letter or memo template. I review it, sign it and off it goes. We've been able to cut out the unnecessary transcription step, saving her time and my time."

Removes Barriers to Creativity

"Dictation is the key to productivity for an attorney, and that's why this tool is such a breakthrough." As Kelly sees it, a major barrier to creativity has been removed. "When you're speaking naturally, the fluidity of language is intuitive, whereas the mechanics of typing interferes with the process of creating intellectual output." As a result, dictated documents usually require minimal editing, while written documents often need multiple revisions.

Speaking to a computer takes a little getting used to, but Kelly finds the rewards worth it. "It's normal to feel uncomfortable at first -even a little silly," he observes. He recalls the feeling of horror the first time he struggled with a keyboard, and how long it took to become productive. "This is different - there's very little effort in learning how to dictate. Basically it requires preparing a brief outline of what you want to say, including all the points you want to raise in each paragraph. Then use the outline to guide your thought process. Your natural speaking skills will allow you to create complete sentences. The rest is common sense - don't mumble or whisper, and speak at a even pace."

The Verdict Is In

"I predict attorneys will soon wonder how they ever managed without this," Kelly concludes. As he uses Dragon NaturallySpeaking to generate more and more work, who could argue with him? "For productivity, it's way ahead of everything we're used to: dictation, the keyboard, even earlier speech recognition systems where you had to stop after each word. What's more, it's a lot of fun."

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