YouTube and Google Voice team up

The techy gifts they keep on a-comin’, and if it wasn’t very close to Chrimbo season you wouldn’t believe the coolness of YouTube’s latest innovation. The video site has integrated itself with Google Voice’s speech recognition technology, which means you can watch videos with captions if necessary (if you’re deaf or it’s in a foreign language), and best of all, add them yourself. Check out the video if you can’t be bothered to read the text. Kids today.

How it works is like this: the auto captioning technology scans the video for words and then throws them up on screen in sync with the video, without the need for transcription. How cool is that? YouTube says that some of the captions will be a bit ropey, particularly to begin with (local dialects, particularly foreign ones, are very hard to decipher), however it has introduced auto-timing to combat this. Auto-timing is a tool for manually adding the captions yourself, without the need for a time code or anything. All you do is add the text and YouTube does the rest. Ace.

Right now it's being used for a few channels, but will soon be rolled out for everyone to fiddle with. Hooray.

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