I am currently working with a couple others on a system for writing math by voice. An early demo is here and for more information see here.

In order to decide on the best editors to do this in, I want to know if any LaTeX editors have an accessibility API. In particular, I’d like to know if any LaTeX editors have the IAccessible2 API since that is the best one for voice recognition right now.

A slightly less preferable API but still potentially good for voice recognition is the Linux AT-SPI API.

That’s pretty much my question so you can stop reading here, but if you’re interested in why why the accessibility API matters here, I explain below.

Dragon (the world’s leading voice recognition software, sold by Nuance) is especially powerful in certain applications – those applications in which Dragon is said to have “full text control” (sometimes also called “Select-and-Say”). Currently, neither LyX nor TeXmaker is one of those applications, but I would like them to be (see below). Here is a demonstration of me using some of the features made possible by full text control in Microsoft Word, an application in which Dragon does have full text control:

James at Hands-Free Coding has made some progress on extending full text control to more applications. His blog post discusses the issue with far more expertise than I have. (for our purposes here the 2nd half of the the blog post is probably most important).

According to the blog post, an important requirement at the moment for making full text control work in an application is that the application in question use the accessibility API called IAccessible2 API.

Linux AT-SPI API may become supported eventually for full text control but this has not happened yet.

  • Emacs has Emacspeak (emacspeak.sourceforge.net), and there are people amazingly productive with it. Commented Feb 1, 2019 at 14:19
  • I bet VSCode has accessibility APIs. You can use the plugin Tex Workshop for LaTeX editing.
    – Tvde1
    Commented Feb 28, 2019 at 10:27

1 Answer 1


Hands-Free Coding's implementation of full text control does work in TeXmaker. However it does not currently work in TeXstudio or LyX.

  • not too sure where any pdf viewers fit into this as its the voice input you are more focused on but sumatrapdf had experimental voice output see github.com/sumatrapdfreader/sumatrapdf/wiki/…
    – user170109
    Commented Feb 27, 2019 at 5:29

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