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Speech recognition software
Thread poster: Irène Guinez

Irène Guinez  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 20:22
Member (2009)
Spanish to French
+ ...
Feb 22, 2010

Hi,

I wonder if some of you are working with a speech recognition software.
I would like to download this software, can you recommend me one ?
Do you consider it as a usefool tool?

Thank you for your advice,


Irène


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Giulia TAPPI  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 20:22
French to Italian
+ ...
Dragon Naturally Speaking Feb 22, 2010

No doubt!

Giulia


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Yaotl Altan  Identity Verified
Mexico
Local time: 13:22
Member (2006)
English to Spanish
+ ...
DNS Feb 22, 2010

Yes, DNS is great.

My Windows Vista system enhances a pretty goof speech recognition system too. Do you have it, Irene?


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Tomás Cano Binder, BA, CT  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 20:22
Member (2005)
English to Spanish
+ ...
Mixed feelings Feb 22, 2010

Well. First of all I must say that Dragon Naturally Speaking is a great product for most purposes. It learns quickly and well and indeed runs quite quickly in a powerful machine with plenty of memory.

Now, is it a sensible tool in my case? Although I was very enthusiastic at first, I later noticed that in some cases it misunderstood words in a way that made sentences make sense, but incorrectly translated. Even with a careful review, we twice delivered wrong words in sentences and, being a person who does not like risks concerning my work, I decided that DNS (version 10) was not ripe for our purposes as translators. Maybe we will try again in the future. We'll see!

If we add the fact that I usually work with three other people in the same space, I could not impose others the burden of listening to my constant talk.

So all in all... I don't use it now. If you are a fast typer and your usual reviewer is already aware of your most usual typos and mental confusions when typing (I reckon we all have three or four words we think are being typed correctly but get typed differently), you are probably safer typing than speaking out your translations.

[Edited at 2010-02-22 17:59 GMT]


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Emma Goldsmith  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 20:22
Member (2010)
Spanish to English
I've stopped using Dragon Feb 22, 2010

Tomás summed up my feelings exactly.

I also bought it thinking that it would be great (even though I am pretty fast at typing) and it was indeed impressive the way it got just about everything right - except names of course, which was a nuisance, but I knew it would be like that.
The hitch was the silly mistakes it made - completely different ones from those that I would make typing (which are picked up on a spell checker). Of course, since the words were correctly spelt, they didn't get underlined in red and because I knew what it should have said, I found it extremely difficult to notice them myself.

I even downloaded Natural Reader (and a wonderful "British Rachel") who read my work out aloud to try to pick up on these slips and this helped a bit, but "she" either read so slowly that it took too long to review my work like that, or, speeding her up, I couldn't follow her carefully enough.

I was also excited at the idea that Dragon might make me think through a sentence before saying it, because I reckoned my translations might benefit from that, but in practice - after so many years of writing in one language as I read another, and then re-reading what I've written and correcting things, I didn't feel that my translations were improving at all, in fact, almost the opposite.

So the long and the short of it is that I have given up using it too.
Sorry I can't be more positive about it!


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Yaotl Altan  Identity Verified
Mexico
Local time: 13:22
Member (2006)
English to Spanish
+ ...
Feed it. Feb 22, 2010

Colleagues, did you use to feed the DNS?

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Tomás Cano Binder, BA, CT  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 20:22
Member (2005)
English to Spanish
+ ...
Of course! Feb 22, 2010

Yaotl Altan wrote:
Colleagues, did you use to feed the DNS?

"La duda ofende" (Doubt hurts) as we say in Spain. Of course I did feed it and corrected it in the right manner for several months and was happy about the results (even with names), but when we spotted the wrong deliveries I thought it was just a risk to keep using it happily. It must be used with care, and if I have to lose time reading it all too carefully I prefer to type and achieve a rather accurate result from the beginning.


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Patricia Rosas  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 12:22
Spanish to English
+ ...
Feed that poor dragon! Feb 22, 2010

Yaotl Altan wrote:

Colleagues, did you use to feed the DNS?


I'm not sure I understand what Yaotl means, but my guess is that he is saying that users of DNS need to train it and build vocabulary.

I'm a huge fan of DNS. Yes, it does make mistakes, but so do I when I type (I make more). My typos are often hard to spot. In my experience, DNS's mistakes usually glaring errors. I proofread my work very carefully, and as far as I know, I've only had one incorrect word slip through, and I caught it at a later stage of the publication process.

DNS has increased my productivity, and I think quality is enhanced, too. When I type, I tend to follow the structure of the source language very closely, but with DNS, I find I read the entire sentence, compose the translation in my mind, and then speak it. I can do all that in less time than it would take me to type the translation and revise it.

ONE WORD OF CAUTION: I know it works for me when dictating English; I can't vouch for how well it works in other languages.

Patricia


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Yaotl Altan  Identity Verified
Mexico
Local time: 13:22
Member (2006)
English to Spanish
+ ...
OK Feb 22, 2010

Patricia Rosas wrote:

Yaotl Altan wrote:

Colleagues, did you use to feed the DNS?


I'm not sure I understand what Yaotl means, but my guess is that he is saying that users of DNS need to train it and build vocabulary.


Yes, you understood me.


...
DNS has increased my productivity, and I think quality is enhanced, too. When I type, I tend to follow the structure of the source language very closely, but with DNS, I find I read the entire sentence, compose the translation in my mind, and then speak it. I can do all that in less time than it would take me to type the translation and revise it.


I agree, my productivity increased too, around a 30%.


ONE WORD OF CAUTION: I know it works for me when dictating English; I can't vouch for how well it works in other languages.

Patricia

The Spanish version works fine. The Windows Vista speech recognition system is good too.


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Tomás Cano Binder, BA, CT  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 20:22
Member (2005)
English to Spanish
+ ...
In DNS, changes of state are ridiculous Feb 22, 2010

One word of caution about the Spanish version of DNS:

Expect some rough terrain with voice commands. For instance, to command an initial capital (for a name for instance or even the beginning of a sentence as DNS is not very wise in those areas), in English you say "caps". In Spanish you say "mayúscula inicial". So you end up saying "mayúscula inicial" in each sentence... Completely disgraceful. I am happy I can type and just press the Shift key instead of speaking like mad!


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Yaotl Altan  Identity Verified
Mexico
Local time: 13:22
Member (2006)
English to Spanish
+ ...
Mix options. Feb 22, 2010

I mix DNS with the use of the mouse and the keyboard. I don't do everything with DNS. Sometimes it's faster to press the shift key and the corresponding letter rather than say "Mayúscula inicial".

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Patricia Rosas  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 12:22
Spanish to English
+ ...
Ditto with Yaotl Feb 22, 2010

Yaotl Altan wrote:

I mix DNS with the use of the mouse and the keyboard. I don't do everything with DNS. Sometimes it's faster to press the shift key and the corresponding letter rather than say "Mayúscula inicial".


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bohy  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 20:22
English to French
+ ...
I've been using Dragon for 10 years now Feb 22, 2010

... and I still use it, I could not translate without it (because of carpian canal syndrom and other such problems). It has improved A LOT over this period.
It requires thorough proofreading, it is the price to pay. You have to know what you are looking for (mainly wrong agreements in number or gender, in French, and also some homonyms), and follow the meaning carefully (this will spot easily any misunderstood word or group of words).
I do not entirely rely on the agency's proofreader, as he/shey may not be looking for the problems listed above, so I proofread myself first.
But altogether the result is very good, and I have not had any complaint from customers about strange words in the text.


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Brian Young  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 11:22
Danish to English
new to speech recognition Feb 22, 2010

I recently bought a copy of Macspeech, and I am slowly getting used to it. I have only used it for emails, but I do plan on using it for a very large job coming up (a book).
I agree with Yaotl and Patricia about using a few keystrokes.
Another thing is that I am not a good typist, and I do like the idea of getting used to looking at a sentence in the source text, and then formulating the translation in my mind, as opposed to the more piecemeal approach that is normal with typing, and usually requires re-writing anyway.
I always run a spell check, the carefully read the target text on the screen. Then I always print it out, which, I know, leaves a big carbon footprint. Then I sit at a table with a bright light and a pencil, and VERY carefully read every word.
I look forward to giving this a real run!


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David Wright  Identity Verified
Austria
Local time: 20:22
German to English
+ ...
Togther with dictation device Feb 23, 2010

I use a hand held dictation device (actually an unsatisfactory device but the old Philips 9000 series gave up on me and they don't produce it any more, and the new more digitalised machine "voice tracer" is far less satisfactory), plus Dragon, and would never dream of typing myself again (too many typos, serious arm-wrist health problems). Sure it makes mistakes (occasionally I suspect they are deliberate - it constitently types 2 for 3 and vice versa), but I've learned to spot them (and for jobs that will be going into print I use my own proof reader). Wouldn't be without it DNS!!

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