RE: Tape Recording End Users & SMEs

Subject: RE: Tape Recording End Users & SMEs
From: Susan Seifert <susan -at- lisco -dot- com>
To: techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com
Date: Sun, 12 Sep 1999 14:17:37 -0500

At 2:14 PM -0700 9/11/99, Anthony Markatos wrote:
>Questions for all listserv members:
>1.) Do you tape record your interviews with end users and/or SMEs? If so,
>why? If not, why?
>2.) Is tape recording frequently utilized? (I have been reviewing postings
>to this listserv for some time and do not recall a single posting on this
>subject. Also, a check of the archives yielded only one archived posting.)
>I seek responses because I conduct a lot of interviews and (especially for
>complex systems) sometimes find myself "snowed-under". All responses

I have occasionally taped my SMEs, or in the case of articles, my
interviewees, but found it enormously time-consuming to go back through the
tapes. Were I to do it now, and if I had a PC instead of a Mac, I'd tape
the interviews and then use some of the voice recognition software to
transcribe it.

The two best (only?) speech recognition software packages are Naturally
Speaking by Dragon Systems and ViaVoice by IBM. Both programs require you
to break them in for several hours before they can reliably recognize your
voice. So you cannot just plug in a tape of someone else talking and expect
an instant transcription. However, a friend transcribes with Naturally
Speaking by listening to the tape with headphones and repeating the words
into her computer's microphone. She says it works like a charm.

As I mentioned, I use a Mac so I haven't tried this myself (both products
are PC only). ViaVoice has promised to port to the Mac by the end of the



Susan Seifert
email: susan -at- lisco -dot- com
phone: 515-472-8461
fax: 515-469-6211

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