Dictating Julia code (for those who wish to avoid or control RSI)

A while back someone asked me about my approach to working with a code while avoiding typing and mousing by hand. I promised a video illustrating the basics. Since it may be of more general use, here it is: https://www.dropbox.com/s/oh6neip26su0gn1/example_dictated_code.flv?dl=0

Please don’t hesitate to get in touch if you’d like to find out how this is done. If all you need just a few hints: Nuance Dragon 15 Professional, infrared mouse for moving the cursor, and USB button for clicking. Plus a few specialized commands.


That’s cool but looks kinda slow :sweat_smile:

If you think about it in terms of dictating the code from a template, it sure is slower than typing. However developing the code from scratch includes a lot of thinking in between the typing. Plus: normally I use a lot of cut-and-paste (which was not part of the demonstration).

Dictating normal text actually is much much quicker.

Thank you for sharing this. I never knew people programmed this way. I found the video quite captivating to watch.

Out of curiousity, how fast can you dicate your commands (and how many at a time)? Is the software making you wait untill your previous commands have been realized, or are you waiting by choice to see the effect?

There is a programmable pause that is required to aid in recognition. Usually around 0.2 seconds. I tend to wait a bit instead of dictating an uninterrupted stream because it is easier for correcting any errors that may occur.

These voice recognition software achieve much higher accuracy when dictating longer full sentences instead of short incomplete phrases/words, you’re right though that writing code is different, it requires more thinking.

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I am a reasonably good typist. Typing the code took me about 2:30 minutes. The video fragment is 3:50 minutes long. So the dictation took about twice as long. (YMMV.) But for code development the timing is probably irrelevant. Most time will be spent cogitating rather than typing, I would guess.

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Regrettably, the link to the video went dead as the video was deleted by mistake. Here is a brief alternate recording: https://www.dropbox.com/s/twdpzjc44svhyw8/ScreenHunter%2006.mp4?dl=0

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