Speech to subtitles and translations: a streamlined process

I've translated quite a bit, just because I started a long time ago. Old age!

Over several years, I translated two thousand pages of Edward de Bono's educational material into Spanish. It used to be in edwdebono.com/spanish but I have no idea where it is now, or if it even exists. I did learned about the thinking tools. :shrug:

I only work very openly now. I've always done stuff so I might learn (from the very first page), and recently because it is just easier to translate and link than to tell 200 hundred friends one by one. Lazy! :-)

So, I may be missing something, but at least I've done some fluwiki texts, some open source ecology videos and texts, an akvo set of documents on "water day" (*link*), Hans Rosling's "200 countries x 200 years in 4 minutes" (more than 40 languages), and videos by Vinay Gupta (too many to mention, but see a recent what and how) and EdgeRyders. Also, one short piece about the scaffolding of imagination. Have I learned!

I've also translated some of my own videos, fooling around with mindmapping while I speak, and then translating that. It's a cool way to convey ideas, but I have yet to use that to my fullest, and for example do my own "complex systems" talk. (Give me some time, later in the year ... oops!)

I'll add links to all of this later, and of course you can just look at what Amara.org, TED.com and others are doing - but just let me tell you about the process itself:
  • Upload video to youtube. It does pay to have good sound, so use a good microphone close to the person speaking.
  • Use Google2SRT.sf.net to download automatic transcription. (Folks, we need an open tool for speech-to-text. Any links?)
  • Polish the transcription. You probably need to get rid of timestamps; I usually do, and there's some script in my hard-disk somewhere. For the actual text editting, if you work alone, use oTranscribe.com or Amara.org itself. If you work with other people, use Etherpad.org as in this animation.
  • Cut the transcription to 42 characters per line, as suggested by Amara. (I guess that advice comes from practice and is shared by other subtitle platforms such as *fill in name, was it dotsub or something like it?*).
  • Upload to amara and synchronise video and sound there.
  • Now, in Amara, you (and people you don't know!) can translate into whatever number of languages. (Did I say Rosling's has more than 40 languages? Yes I did. See above.)
You need to check at every stage, but it's not like you can break much, so just have fun while you learn and cooperate. Ah, a tip from my experience: do only the easy half, and never do the second half. It's too expensive, and others can do it so much better than you, so just ask for help!

Ok so, while we're at it, can you lend a hand with our current project, which is a talk by Vinay Gupta on leveraging BitCoin and other blockchain tools to, well, "do poverty"? The etherpad instance is http://piratepad.net/vinaygupta-bitcoin-2. Thanks!

PS: I'd also love to do New World Order but they may be doing it already, and differently. :-?


#WHP1: exploring a thinking tool

#WHP1 is Want, Have, Possibilities, 1st step. It can be a mindmap or a set of lists or a conversation. It's a thinking tool because it helps you focus on one aspect at a time, yet build a fuller picture. It's a loop if you make it so; I do.

(It's an action tool too. Not that neurons are different for thinking and acting. It's just that some neurons are connected to muscles. But I disgress. Anyway.)

Say our current focus/center is "a better room". Wants is experience, function, purpose: a place to hide, work, talk, cook, give to ourselves, or whatever. Haves is square meters, windows, existing furniture; but also some money, friends to ask advice from, and any other resources we can muster. Possibilities include making, buying, giving away, repositioning, and maybe even swapping rooms. First step is you select what you can do in 2-5 minutes, one afternoon, or a week. Give the whole round 3-10 minutes, or a few days. Then you go back to Wants, and see how it's now enriched.

Try it on a few examples, maybe working together with other people, or first round alone and then ask and listen. You now own the tool. It can stay in your toolbox, unused. Yours.

I've used #OODA, John Boyd's Observe, Orient, Decide, Act loop, which is good for objective, complex, extra-personal situations. I used it together with SCIM (Vinay Gupta's Simple Critical Infrastructure Maps) for severe pandemic influenza, because SCIM is great for "orientation" around Needs and Provision. It's linked from http://ResilienceMaps.org and, frankly, may we never ever need it. (But I'm glad I did my homework.)

OODA is different from WHP1. I wonder if parallel teams, sharing output, would give us some interesting insights. But in my experience any tool is often better than no tool... Even if, or particularly when, you find the tool doesn't cover the thinking you feel is needed for that particular situation. As in "hey, #WHP1 doesn't let me look at this-and-that".

That's probably why I wrote the "I'm not my phone" song, over at http://imacan.bandcamp.com/album/evolution, and the Acceptable Fairies Observation elsewhere in this blog. Because we stay limited in our thinking, no matter what we do: small photographic cameras, huge-moving-smelly landscape. But you already knew.

Anyway, I hope this helps somewhat. :shrug: :-)