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flutherother's avatar

Are there any online speech to text services that work?

Asked by flutherother (30158points) September 18th, 2017

I would like to convert a large amount of handwritten material to digital text. There are various speech to text services on the internet but I have yet to find one that works. Can you recommend one? It would have to cope with a Scottish accent.

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12 Answers

Muad_Dib's avatar

To my knowledge, transcription is one of those things that is still best done by humans. What do you mean by a “large amount”? Are you looking for a free computer-generated thing, or do you have a budget for the project?

flutherother's avatar

I was looking to get this done for free. There are probably the equivalent of 10 megabytes of text to be transcribed which would take me an eternity with my two fingers. I hoped the way AI is advancing there might be some programme out there that would do this efficiently but it seems there isn’t.

Muad_Dib's avatar

Not so far. People get paid by the minute to do this, because computers don’t understand spoken grammar that well yet. Too many nuances.

rebbel's avatar

Do you think it would pay off to upload some speech (sample) to YouTube (I guess you would have to add it to a video file) and see what their transcription service does with it?
I just watched an episode of a guy I am subscribed too and the transcription isn’t half bad.

flutherother's avatar

@rebbel Interesting. I never knew you could do this with YouTube. It isn’t going to work for this particular project, however I appreciate your suggestion.

janbb's avatar

There are excellent speech to text programs for the deaf. I believe the one the phone companies use is called something like TTS. I doubt they are freely available but you could research that by contacting an organization that provides services for the blind.

2davidc8's avatar

There is software called Dragon Naturally Speaking that, according to reviews, does speech to text quite well. However, I believe it costs $$. See if you can get a free trial of it. You might be able to get it all done during the free trial period.

janbb's avatar

@2davidc8 You’re and that one has been around a long time.

2davidc8's avatar

I also understand that the latest version of Siri (iPhone, iPad) has been updated to handle Scottish accents. Go to the app store and look for voice to text apps that take advantage of Siri to convert your speech to text. There are many such apps, but maybe not all use Siri.

If you don’t have an Apple product, look in the corresponding Android store. I’m pretty sure they’ve all caught up by now.

I use Google Keep, which works quite well, in my opinion, and since it is a Google product, I’m pretty sure that it does not use Siri. Then again, I don’t have a Scottish accent.

flutherother's avatar

Thanks everyone. I don’t have an Apple device and the best software I could find is speechnotes for Android.Sometimes it works surprisingly well sometimes it makes terrible blunders. This is a long term project for me so I can wait until the technology improves which I am sure it will.

flutherother's avatar

I have now tried speechtexter on my PC. It is pretty good and doesn’t make such a mess of the formatting when I convert to Word.

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