Monday, December 28, 2009

YouTube introduces automatic captions for hearing impaired

YouTube's parent company Google has announced on its blog that automatic captions are to begin to roll out across the site. The machine-generated captions will initially be generated in english. At first they will only be found on 13 channels. These include national Geographic, Columbia, as well as most Google and YouTube channels. The software engineer behind this technology, Ken Harrenstien, is deaf.
Currently, YouTube offers a manual captioning service but video makers tend not to use it. The current step aims to combining automatic speech recognition with the recent current caption system.
The translation is not always perfect, but Harrenstien says that the technology "will continue to improve with time."
Alternatively users can upload a transcript of their video and auto-timing algorithms will match the next to the words as they are spoken.


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