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StoryHarp Kurtz-Fernhout Software
Developers of custom software and educational simulations.
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StoryHarp and Microsoft Agent

You can use StoryHarp with or without Microsoft Agent. Agent shows an animated character on your screen which can read text to you and listen to your voice.

  • With Microsoft Agent, you can hear the StoryHarp story read by a floating Agent character on your screen (using text-to-speech) and you can hear sounds and music (if they are in the story). You can move the story forward by saying things to the Agent character.
  • Without Agent, you can play StoryHarp stories by reading a transcript and clicking on choices to move the story forward. You can still hear any music included in the story. This can be fun too, so give it a try if you don't want to download Agent.
For more information on StoryHarp in general, see the StoryHarp page. For more information on Microsoft Agent in general, see the Microsoft Agent page at the Microsoft site.

Downloading Agent

Note that you should download StoryHarp before you download Microsoft Agent if you plan to use them together.

The Microsoft Agent download page has all the download links you need to use Agent plus the end-user license agreement and international versions. To use Agent with StoryHarp you will need to download these items.

  • To make the Agent work, download the Microsoft Agent ActiveX Control, which is the core component for running Agent.
  • To make the Agent talk, download the Lernout & HauspieŽ TruVoice Text-To-Speech engine.
  • To make choices with your voice, download the Microsoft Command and Control Speech Engine. This download is much larger than the others. If you just want to use StoryHarp by clicking on choices instead of saying them, you don't need this download.
Microsoft Agent System Requirements: Windows 95 or NT 4.0; a 100 MHz Pentium or better; 16 MB RAM or more; about 1 MB of disk space for the Agent control, 2 MB for the text-to-speech engine, and 7 MB for the voice recognition engine (that makes 10 MB total); a Windows-compatible sound card; and speakers and a microphone. Agent also sometimes requires Internet Explorer 3.02 or later during installation (for some included files) though Explorer is not used while you are using StoryHarp.


If you have any problems installing or using Agent, see

Consult our download/install help page if you are not sure how to download and install these files, or if you have trouble during download or installation.

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Updated: April 5, 1999. Questions/comments on site to
Copyright © 1998, 1999 Paul D. Fernhout & Cynthia F. Kurtz.