Sometimes we want out Linux box to speak to/for us.This ability is very useful to make announcements and alerts in case of many critical events in our machines or can be used just for sheer fun. There exists a command line synthesized known as espeak that comes pre installed in Ubuntu. You can also install it on debian systems by typing the command sudo apt-get install espeak in a command console .For all other operating systems you can install it from source available at http://espeak.sourceforge.net/download.html The usage of espeak is pretty straight forward, just type espeak “text to announce” in a text console and listen your computer speaking the text.Some basic options to control espeak are :
a <integer> sets the amplitude/loudness of the speech
f <filename> speaks the content of the given file
p <integer> sets the pitch/frequency of the speech
s <integer> sets the speed of the speech in words/minute
Espeak is a cross platform utility that runs on more than half a dozen of OS platforms. So go through its man page by typing man espeak in a text console , explore it more and make your machine speak.