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Re: Text to Speech software

Ian wrote:
The concept was to have the same image on any diskette so it didn't matter what machine you plugged it into (VIBS of non-VIBS).  Great concept but your database disks cost 10 to 20 times more than they should. 
 Ken wrote:
Define "more than they should". 
The concept of a database on a 1.44MB floppy was the expectation.  If there was a warning as to the maximum amount of race data with audio files that would fit on a 1.44MB floppy, then field support should have known better.  A Imation Super Disk is 10 to 20 times more than a floppy disk.
 The IMark system required superdisks (or zip or whatever) for even trivial databases.
So I guess we're happy our 3.12.x software is nearly the same as the I-Mark software for more than trivial databases.
I have three suggestions: 
  •  keep databases below 1.44MB even with audio files,  
 Great suggestion...
Thank you.  Now is it feasible?  What are the limits?  How does a customer or field support person know they now need Imation Super Disks when 1.44MB floppies worked before?
  • split VIBS and non-VIBS so you can have databases with and without audio files(i.e., non-VIBS use 1.44MB floppies and VIBS use 120MB Super Disks) 
 Please describe the changes you would like to see in GEMS to support this.  Next analyse whether the complexity is worth it, given that only accounts affected by this are large, use VIBS, are absentee (ie all precincts on the disk), and have precinct comittee people
I don't even kid myself that I have the expertise to answer let alone analyze the issue.  That's a question the whole company needs to discuss and decide.
  • Up the cost to the customer to purchase Imation Super Diskettes for every machine, plus spares. Also to accumulate results, you'll need to add an Imation Super Disk Drive to your PollBook computer. 
I suspect the customer will buy the media at whatever Office Depot is selling them for.  Obviously the Poll Book needs to be able to talk to the same media as the ballot station.
All that is needed is a warning as to what may be required.  So when we configure PollBooks we send everything they need and contracts can take those kind of costs into account.  Or so we can tell customers up front "Be aware that you may have to use Imation Super Disk for larger elections".
I know the new AV-TS doesn't use floppies, but will it be hindered by requirements for larger flash RAM packages.  Will a customer be told that a 2MB Flash will do, and then be required to buy a 4MB for his next election or an 8MB flash for the following election?  When quoting a customer's needs, where do you draw the line?  Are there any formulas to figure this stuff out?  Or do you just "pays your money and takes your chances"?