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WEEK ONE - oTranscribe Digital Friday

What does it do?

oTranscribe is a free web-based tool designed to help you transcribe audio or video recordings you've made. It could be recordings of lectures, presentations or interviews or other activities involving speech or conversation.

When would you use it?

Students might use it for transcribing recorded lectures or seminars; Teaching staff might find it helpful to transcribe seminars or conversations with students, or to provide transcripts of lecture recordings. Researchers might find it helpful for transcribing meetings or interviews with participants. Administrators may also find it useful for minute-taking or transcribing meetings. As we move towards more integration of audio and video into the learning experience it's likely everyone will find a use for it in time.

How does it work?

Start by uploading your recording to a place you can access from the PC or other device you're using - network, local storage or flash drive. The file can be an audio MP3 or WAV audio format, as an MP4 video file format, or even as the URL of a YouTube or other video)Once you've done this you can open the file and start listening to it, transcribing as you go using oTranscribe's simple file editor - you can add Bold and Italic text.

You can Pause the recording using the ESC key, rewind using F1 and fast-forward using F2, meaning you can transcribe without taking your hands off the keyboard or fiddling with the playback controls like you would on an audio playback tool such as Windows Media Player. Your transcript is automatically saved to your browser's local storage every few minutes, so you don't have to keep remembering to save the transcript.

oTranscribe also allows you to do smart things like adding a time-stamp to indicate how far into the audio file the typed transcript is, so you can quickly jump backwards and forwards to the point you wish to work on. If your typing speed doesn't keep up with the audio content you can adjust playback speed with a slider on the screen or using the F3/F4 keys. You can even reconfigure the shortcut/function keys if required.

You can export your transcript to a text file (.txt) but this removes the formatting - the time-stamps, for instance - but you can import or export formatted files in the .OTR format.

The video below gives a short overview of the basic features;

And this video is a bit more of an in-depth look at the tool;

Where can I access it?

oTranscribe is available from http://otranscribe.com/. Because it's intended to work on your desktop it's not available for iPhone or Android. It's an Open Source tool, and it's under development and review and will therefore no doubt change...and hopefully improve.

It's a simple tool but does a fiddly job really well - highly recommended. Desktop giants like Google and MS Office 365 may well emulate this tool's functionality in time, but for now, this is the tool for anyone needing to transcribe speech to text in a simple and effective manner.

What do you think of Digital Friday?

You can comment on Digital Friday or suggest other tools or applications to be included in future - go here to do so!

Copyright-free image from https://www.flickr.com/photos/56041749@N02/6875979898

Credits:

Created with images by mrsdkrebs - "Ink and Quill"

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