Blocks: oohoo - Text to Speech

Maintained by Picture of Patrick Thibaudeau Patrick Thibaudeau, Picture of Nicolas Bretin Nicolas Bretin
OOHOO Text to Speech is a Moodle block that reads outloud the content of a resource
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This block adds text to speech functionality to Moodle

It can be configured to use either the Google speech engine or the Microsoft speech engine. When added to a resource such as a page, it reads the contents.

There is also a lexicon to add pronunciations for words that it pronounces improperly. For example, it could possibly say I.V. for the text IV. It should, however, say 4. You could add in the lexicon IV = four and it willpronounce it properly.


A special thank you to Ryan Thomas who is the original author of this block.


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Picture of Patrick Thibaudeau
Patrick Thibaudeau (Lead maintainer)
Picture of Nicolas Bretin
Nicolas Bretin: Developer
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  • Picture of Roland Sherwood
    Thu, 18 Apr 2013, 11:25 PM
    Hi Nicolas. Yes, I'm curious also as I would have thought themes need to adhere to certain standards in order for core and third-party features to function properly. Either way, I've now raised the issue and will drop a reply here when I hear back from them.
  • Picture of tim wilde
    Thu, 18 Apr 2013, 11:36 PM
    Thanks Nicolas, The 500 error is an intermittent test server error.If you refresh the page some reason it disappears. I have changed the theme to “afterburner” and I still experience the same problems.

    Any debugging clues would be appreciated. Thanks
  • Picture of Nicolas Bretin
    Thu, 18 Apr 2013, 11:57 PM
    I still have the 500 error on the tts test page.
    To help me debugging, can you try to activate Firebug in Firefox and tell me if you have javascript error and what is the response of the first GET request (something like in the console tab ?
  • Picture of tim wilde
    Fri, 19 Apr 2013, 2:33 PM
    Hi Nicolas

    I think we should ignore the test server as it may be giving us spurious 500 errors.

    Please see the live server here
    and the TTS test results here
    Do you still get the 500 errors? It runs clean from this end.

    The results of Firebug are here

    I have tested as follows
    Different servers. Same problem.
    Different theme. Same problem.
    Different Moodle Versions. Same problem
    Different Browsers FireFox, IE and Chrome. Same problem.
    Different machines. Same problem

    I am running out of ideas and hope that the Firebug log file will provide more clues!

    Thanks for your help

  • Picture of Nicolas Bretin
    Fri, 19 Apr 2013, 10:46 PM
    Hi Tim,

    Thanks it works better with this server!

    So on this page, with firebug you have the request :
    And it should return JSON. But if you look at the response it start with a notice:
    Strict Standards: Creating default object from empty value in /home/sli/public_html/smartmove/config.php on line 5
    It is generally because the config.php missed the $CFG = new stdClass();
    It is because your config.php file is from an older version of moodle and of course this file is not updated when you update Moodle.
    So just add this line to your config file and try again.

    But I'm not sure why this error doesn't show up on your normal pages...

  • Picture of Roland Sherwood
    Fri, 19 Apr 2013, 11:44 PM
    Hi Nicolas. Just a quick note to confirm the developers of Bootstrap will hopefully revert to the original naming of the region-main element under 2.5 (not sure bout the 2.4 version of the theme):

    "The reason the div id was renamed was to avoid conflicts with Moodle's base theme CSS. The Moodle_25 branch of the bootstrap theme does not rely on base CSS anymore so I guess we could change the names back to region-main."

    So, fingers crossed you don't need to spend time implementing any changes to the block in order to ensure compatibility. Btw, just to confirm I followed your suggestion and modified the selector definition and the blocks works fine now.

    Thanks again.
  • Picture of tim wilde
    Sat, 20 Apr 2013, 9:20 AM
    Hi Nicolas,

    That’s fixed it! The plug-in is now light grey ,the spinning icon has stopped and I can now click “play”. Thank you so much for your help.

    Just for clarification and reference for anyone else who experiences a problem with the plug-in being greyed out and spinning. The fix is to add $CFG = new stdClass(); to the top of the moodle/config.php file .

    I now just have one further small problem. The TTS system works with Microsoft but not with Google. If I click on play with the system set to Microsoft I get some sound but it is fairly slow and stuttered. I understand that the Google TTS is smoother, so I thought that I would try that one. However I get no sound via Google
    See the following page

    It highlights the first word but no sound and I cannot get past the first word

    I attach the Firebug debug info here. The first part is Microsoft (which works, The second is Google, which produces no sound)

    I hope that we can resolve this and then I can leave you in peace!

    Thanks again for your help to date



  • Picture of Nicolas Bretin
    Mon, 22 Apr 2013, 11:57 PM
    Hi Tim,

    Apparently the Google service refuse to serve the mp3...
    Can you go on github =>
    And follow my instructions in order to modify a file in your TTS block.
    I just don't want to publish something that doesn't work on Moodle!

    Thank you for your return!

  • Picture of tim wilde
    Tue, 23 Apr 2013, 10:01 AM
    Hi Nicolas

    I am able to download the test file from here without any problems

    I added the new file to /tts/app/_php/_services/google_tts_config.php

    (Note that I could only find this file in _services).

    However unfortunately I still have the same problem playing Google TTS

    Sorry about this. Can you please let me know if there is anything else that I can do to troubleshoot the problem


  • Picture of Aditya Dubay
    Wed, 8 Jan 2014, 4:07 PM
    I wish to know, when you people release plugin for moodle 2.6. I wish to use this plugin and eagerly waiting for it.
  • Picture of james logue
    Fri, 7 Mar 2014, 2:36 AM
    I have upgraded to 2.5.4 and added the oohoo plugin. I get a grayed out box and the cog wheel spins continuously. I don't have any users on my site at this time since I am testing the site. Any help with this would be great. I have read everything I can find but haven't found any solutions.
  • Picture of Roland Sherwood
    Mon, 12 May 2014, 5:09 PM
    James - just to quickly note that the TTS block requires Flash support in the browser, so if you don't have that installed (or are using an iOS device) the player will be exhibit the issues you've described.
  • Picture of Dimo Dimov
    Mon, 1 Sep 2014, 5:08 PM
    We use Moodle 2.6.4 (Build: 20140714) and the same issue with the gray box and the spinning wheel. Any help will be appreciated.
  • Picture of nata g
    Sat, 6 Sep 2014, 5:13 PM

    This plugin seems to be awesome. Unfortunately my version of Moodle is 2.7. Are there any chances that an update will be released for this version ?
    Thank you.
  • Picture of Sheila Owen
    Thu, 27 Aug 2015, 7:52 PM
    Has anyone been successful in getting this plugin to work in Moodle 2.7?
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