In this episode, Eve and Corinne share some new tips and tricks to help you work more efficiently and learn new skills. Including:
- Text-to-speech proofreading (having your computer read your translations out loud). Addendum: the text-to-speech engine in MS Word is available for Chinese, Danish, Dutch, English, Finnish, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Norwegian, Polish, Portuguese, Russian, Spanish, and Swedish.
- Speech-to-text dictation in Excel (rather than retyping those tedious numbers)
- Using a tablet as a second monitor
- Kutools for Excel, an MS Office add-on that lets you–among other things–search across multiple Excel files
- ORCIT, the European Union’s Online Resources for Conference Interpreter Training course (thanks to Tamara Muroiwa for the recommendation)
- PayPal.Me, a money request that uses only a link
- The Infinity USB digital foot pedal, for controlling video and audio on your computer using your foot instead of the keyboard
- Alt-Shift-Control, for highlighting non-contiguous text in MS Word
Click the audio player link to listen online
Right-click the link below to download the MP3.
Chrome/Firefox: Choose “Save Link As”
Internet Explorer: Choose “Save target as”
Safari: Choose “Download Linked File”
Our favorite new tips and tricks
Hello Eve and Corinne,
Thanks for these great tips. On the same topic, I found out about the application Focus@Will a couple of weeks ago, thanks to Ed Gandia, and my productivity has skyrocketed.
Basically you set up a time (lets say 90 minutes as it is supposed to be the time you can stay focused on one task) and during these 90 minutes the app plays the music you want. I find classical music very inspirational. Obviously you have to shut down your emails and your phone to stay focused. When the bell rings you can take 20 minutes off to do yoga, answer your emails, walk the dog or whatever. That works pretty well. I know manage to reach my goal everyday without being exhausted at the end of the day. I hope that will help other translators as well!
Thanks for this tip! I have tried this in the past, but just with my own timer. I am going to check it out right now! Thanks to you (and Ed Gandia!) for sharing.
Thanks Cecile! Great tip and thanks for your comment!
Hi, All – I wanted to say that since we recorded the podcast, I have discovered that you can use Windows 10 speech recognition with Gmail (or any other application you can type in). I have also been “training” the computer to my voice in hopes of getting better results. You don’t have to, but since it helps the speech recognition function to work more efficiently, it is worthwhile and doesn’t take long. To do so, go to Control Panel > Ease of Access > Speech Recognition and click on Train your computer to better understand you.
I’d be interested in hearing from others how they use speech recognition built into their operating system for productivity (as opposed to Dragon for translation, which is also very useful, but different). Thanks!
Good episode! This site says you have to say “Press Enter” in order to move on to the next cell in Excel (when dictating): http://nuance.custhelp.com/app/answers/detail/a_id/6039/~/tips-for-dictating-in-microsoft-excel
Thanks for the tip!
This is great! Thank you so much! I knew it was something “easy,” but could not figure out what it was. I tested “Press Enter” as you mention above and it works like a charm. Using that logic, I also tried “Press Right Arrow” and that worked too – that is what I had really wanted during the project I described in this episode. I am super excited. Thanks for sharing!
I use Dragon Naturally Speaking to translate into English. I have the same shortcomings that were described about proofing my own work. I occasionally use Natural Reader for TTS, because I’m more likely to hear my mistakes than see them. The problem is I find it tedious to control the playback because it’s all screen driven. My version of Word is too old for native TTS, but that could be remedied.
SO, when I heard about the foot pedal for transcriptions, I wondered if there is a way to interface the transcription control pedal with a TTS program, whether it’s third-party or part of Microsoft? Ideally, it would be straight text to speech without having to create some sort of intermediate audio file. Any ideas?
Thanks, Steve! Interesting; I’ll ask Eve to take a look at this!
Very interesting idea! I looked around a bit and didn’t find much (but that doesn’t mean it is not out there) but did come across this link where they seem to be describing what you described: https://www.startstop.com/start-stop-transcription-made-easy/ – however, it seems kind of expensive and I cannot vouch for the legitimacy, but at least it shows someone else has thought about what you have. If you check it out or flnd our more info, let us know. Also, I love your “out-of-the-box-thinking” to apply technology in different ways. Thanks for your comment.
Hi guys – I listened to this yesterday and have to say it made me laugh out loud when Corinne talked about the Text-to-Speech voice speaking English text with a French accent! I have been using the Text-to-Speech feature for some time now – I agree it’s a fantastic way of picking up little errors that would have slipped through the net – and last week for some unknown reason (must have been a file format issue), the voice started doing exactly that! It really is very funny 🙂 Thanks for another great podcast! Irene (French to English, corporate social responsibility)
Thanks Irene! Glad you enjoyed it and we do try to keep a sense of humor about technology!
Ha ha – I have to test that out now. So funny! At least the little “robot” has a sense of humor to keep us all laughing 🙂 And, I love this feature too and have used it a few times since Corinne told me about it. Great!
Excellent episode, thanks for all the great tips! It seems more and more freelancers are using Dragon. I never tried it (well as a PM, it’s not that useful yet 🙂
For TTS- proofreading, a freelance translator mentioned “Text aloud” that she uses for proofreading her work.
To search in multiple files (Excel or others), I use “Archivarius 3000”, which was recommended to me by a German freelance translator.
I use it to index the reference files provided with a project (Excel glossaries, csv, xml, html, etc.).
Works fine for me, and not that expensive. Some use the more powerful dtSearch.
Hello Eve and Corinne, thank you for great tips! If anybody is interested, a good Russian text-to-speech software is called Balabolka. The MS Word seems to support that feature in Russian too but I couldn’t make it work.
Thank you, Oleg, for that tip. I am sure our listeners who work in Russian will be very interested.
Ladies – I enjoyed the podcast. Thanks. FYI, the Microsoft text-to-speech bot reads Korean just fine, but as you found with the French bot, the Korean one also reads English with a Korean accent!
Thanks for the info on the Korean capability and, I must say, that is hilarious to know about the Korean accent in English to go with the others! Thanks, Steve.
Did you guys hear about Amazon transcribe? https://aws.amazon.com/blogs/aws/amazon-transcribe-scalable-and-accurate-automatic-speech-recognition/
Interesting. I am curious as to how accurate it is. Thanks for sharing!