Automatic Captioning Now on YouTube Videos

Google just announced an interesting new service available for YouTube: automated captioning of uploaded videos. While that feature rolls out slowly through selected partners, there is also a cool “automatic caption timing” feature that enables a more manual – but still streamlined – captioning process. Simply upload a text file with a transcript of your video and Google’s speech recognition technology will figure out when those words are spoken and create captions based on this information. Pretty slick.

Beyond the obvious benefits to the hearing impaired, captioning supports a tactic that we use and advocate in many of our multimedia presentations. Offering captioning on marketing or training videos allows viewers to still get context even when the volume on their computer is low or muted – often the case in an office cubicle environment. Captioning also allows viewers to more completely understand technical details by seeing the “big words” on screen – reinforcing key points.

Check out the how-it-works video (you have to love that casual Google style “sometimes it works pretty good.”):

Seems like a great feature all around and something technology marketers can use to extend the value of their multimedia presentations. You can be sure I’ll be trying it pretty quickly.

800 Languages, 1 Typeface

Fascinating case study about Google and Monotype’s collaboration on Noto – an incredibly ambitious project to create one master typeface that can display on any device, any medium, in any language or writing system.


Drone on the Farm

A report from the Association for Unmanned Vehicle Systems International predicted that the legalization of commercial drones would create more than $80 billion of positive economic impact (i.e., revenue and job creation) between 2015 and 2025. The predicted biggest piece of that growth? Agriculture.


Ready for Smart Tattoos?

MIT Media Lab, in partnership with Microsoft Research, has unveiled DuoSkin, a project that uses temporary tattoos as connected interfaces that can be used in a variety of ways.