Reporter's Notebook

The art and science of the interview

Late Night Quickie

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I just got a new piece of software that will let me create transcripts of my interviews.  It’s amazing technology.  I just drag the audio file into a box and it listens to the audio and creates a written version.  I listen and make spot corrections, of course.  But it’ll transcribe my longest, hour long interviews and all I have to do is go to the start of the finished transcript, put on the headphones, click the audio file and touch up as I go.  I’ve transcribed hundreds of hours of interviews by hand over the years and it can be misery.  I created a rule of thumb that said each minute of audio took three minutes to carefully listen to and accurately transcribe.  So an hour of audio could easily take three hours to transcribe.  Now, for this same hour-long interview, I expect it will only take an extra 30 minutes, not 180.  This is exquisite.

Soon, I expect to have readable transcripts for all of my interviews.  I’ll put the transcribe icon right next to the microphone (get interviewed) icon and beside the preview and interview boxes beneath each completed interview on my Conversus website – www.convers.us.  And it’ll be great because the Internet looks for tags and keywords.  So, all of the references in the written versions will make them that much easier to find online.  It’ll be one stop shopping.

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Written by Interviewer

April 11, 2013 at 14:21

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