This is by no means a revelation, but did you know your mac can speak? OS X has a nifty little feature for those who aren’t afraid of a bit of keyboard action in the terminal – the ‘say’ command.

Just open up terminal, and to begin with give this a whirl.

$ say hello world

Easy peasy, lemon squeezy, your mac just talked to you. Assuming you had the speakers turned up.

That was plain old Alex speaking to you. The fun has just begun, however, because there are a few different personalities hiding inside. You can check out the manual but it isn’t overly helpful. It tells you to use the -v option to change the voice. But what other voices, dare I ask? Well there’s Vicki, Fred, Junior, Cellos, and my favourite, Zarvox. There are others of course, the answer lies on your hard drive. Checkout:


If it’s anything like mine, you will have:

Agnes, Albert, Alex, BadNews, Bahh, Bells, Boing, Bruce, Bubbles, Cellos, Deranged, Fred, GoodNews, Hysterical, Junior, Kathy, Organ, Princess, Ralph, Trinoids, Vicki, Victoria, Whisper and Zarvox.

PS: Once handy option is -o which will let you export to an audio format of your (apple friendly) choice. blogon.