Designs 4 The Web (shameless plug), I was dreading the typing. So off to Google I went to find a solution. At first it seemed that there were no free solutions out there but then I found this article about HTML 5 Speech to Text on CNET. Currently, HTML 5 speech to text is only supported by Google Chrome browsers but it will begin to take off as more developers take advantage of this technology. One of the sites using HTML 5 Speech to Text is Google Translate (click English as language being spoken) and on that site I was able to answer each question by simply speaking and then using copy/paste. I was impressed by the accuracy of the site and how easy it was to use. Another example of this technology in action can be found here.
Once HTML 5 Speech to Text really takes off it is going to be amazing to see it used in the classroom. There are so many applications in the foreign language classroom and beyond. I'm thinking about all of the amazing interactive activities online that would be even better if speech was the input device for the content.