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YouTube adds automatic captions for deaf viewers

Written by Andre Yoskowitz (Google+) @ 21 Nov 2009 19:48 User comments (3)

YouTube adds automatic captions for deaf viewers Google has announced that they have begun adding automatic captions to videos available via YouTube, giving deaf viewers a much needed service.
Ken Harrenstien, a deaf software engineer who works for Google, is the man behind the machine-generated captions, although they will only appear on 13 channels at launch.

"The majority of user-generated video content online is still inaccessible to people like me,"
Harrenstien said via the official Google Blog.

Harrenstien says the system, which combines automatic speech recognition with YouTube's current caption system, is not perfect, but that it will "continue to improve with time".

Additionally, users can upload a transcript of their video and Google auto-timing algorithms will match the text to the words on screen as they are spoken.

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3 user comments

121.11.2009 20:33

Then when the media mafia can not get fees for showing scripts they will bomb the place with take down notices...

221.11.2009 22:46

Only 13 channels for deaf people. How about the people who can't hear worth a damn like me. I mean that's gotta count for something (sarcasm) - BLUEBOY

327.11.2009 10:24

Sad, two responces as of now lol, It's understandable, it's been that way all of my kid's lifes, as they are both deaf, until it affects you or your's nobody gives a crap, just like I did before my first deaf child was born. First it hit me like a ton of bricks but time heals all.

Than the ugly part, and this was just one of them, they can't watch TV, finally about 25 years ago we were able to buy a little box that cost us 300 smackers just to be able to watch Closed Captions, and beleive me we didn't complain, I would have gotten a loan if it would have cost thousands, having CC on TV opened a whole new world to my kids, now this, it's great news, as you know my kids can never veiw any video content on the PC screen because they can't hear it, they can never use a phone for communication, as the PC, web, and communicators became a lifesaver, I communicate with my kids more with my PC and thier communicators more than ever as I don't sign well, plus the fact keeping in touch with them easily as they are away from home.

This is great news, I hope many will follow.

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