Friday, May 25, 2012

Monkey Write: Now with pronunciations!

When I showed Monkey Write to new users, 8 out of 10 people would ask me, "why doesn't it pronounce the character?" My philosophy has always been "launch early, launch often", so I put Monkey Write on the market even though it was missing this obvious feature. Not any more - the latest version of Monkey Write includes pronunciations!

I recorded the characters over the weekend:

See the fancy microphone? My friend does voice-over for videos as a hobby, and I spotted the microphone when I went over to his place for board games. I borrowed it for the recording, and the sound was wonderful.

For software, I used Audacity. It was fun to see the sound wave of the characters. Look like tropical fish to me!

I sounded out all the characters in a workbook, usually twice per character, and then exported each character as a separate ogg file. Audacity made that pretty easy, which was a relief, since I always ended up yelling at iMovie whenever I needed to edit videos. A media editing UI that makes sense! Such a pleasure. If you know any one who worked on Audacity, please give them a pat on the shoulder from me.

Monkey Write pronounces the character automatically when you enter this screen. If you want to hear it again, press the sound button on the top right corner. When you are done writing the character, you will hear the character one more time.

The pronunciation-enabled version of Monkey Write is now available on Google Play Store, Amazon Appstore and the NOOK shop. Grab a copy, and let me know what you think. Will be great if you can write a review on the store too!

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