2004 Conference Proceedings

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Blake Erickson
Telex Communications, Inc.
12000 Portland Ave S
Burnsville, MN 55337
Phone: 952-736-4233


Telex has developed Talking book products for 40 years. Telex will show Daisy related products and what is planned for the future of talking books.


In the late 1960s Telex began its long relation with the Talking book industry. Telex built record players for the National Library Service division of the Library of Congress. In that same time, Telex was a leader in the development of magnetic playback and duplication products. In the 1970s Telex began production of cassette machines for the NLS. In the 1980s Telex helped develop simplified playback of records and tape players and produced the first combination machine offering both cassette and record playback.

In the 1990s Telex developed the Narrator and Tutor Cassette book players that were available on the open market. These players were built from the ground up as talking book players rather than adapted from consumer players. This brought new reliability to the 4 track playback market.

At the same time, Telex began the development of conversion products for Talking book producers. These products were designed to allow the quick transfer of analog audio to the digital world. It also allowed digital material to be recorder at high speed to analog cassette.

In December of 2001, Telex built C-1 talking book machine #1,000,000 in Blue Earth Minnesota.


Telex began its relation with the Daisy Consortium in 1997 when the Daisy standard was being formulated. Last year Telex introduced the Scholar and EzDaisy portable Daisy CD players. These players were the first to offer a portable "Diskman" style player at a price that was nearly half of any other hardware Daisy player at the time.

The Telex Scholar is designed for personal use that allows navigation to specific pages and user set bookmarks. It has an integrated telephone style keypad for numeric input of page numbers. This is an important feature in the education environment for reading specific assigned pages in textbooks.

The EzDaisy is a simplified version of the Scholar allowing the user to skim chapters. This machine is mainly designed for leisure readers who will read books cover to cover.

New Developments.

The Scholar and EzDaisy are designed to be forward compatible when new standards emerge. Daisy is moving to the Revision 3.0 standard which is coordinated with ISO/NISO standard Z39.86. Telex is introducing compatibility with these new talking book playback standards. New books will allow users to bypass secondary information that may distract the message. This gives talking book users a reading experience that comes the closest yet to that of standard print books. This upgrade will also allow the playback of Dasiy 2.0 and 2.02 material in the same machine.

Telex will demonstrate the new features of Daisy 3.0/NISO Z39-86 as they are incorporated into the Telex players. We will show such things as page number, side bar, footnote and other skippable features along with how to set up the player to manage these functions.

Telex continues to evolve in the digital talking book environment. As technology changes Telex will introduce new products in the talking book market to allow easy playback as media and formats change. Telex will rely on our 40 years of experience to deliver world class products.

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