If you're not already aware of it, you ought to take a look at Stories
an open source oral history database tool developed at Concordia
University in Canada. SM allows archiving of digital video and audio
materials, enabling oral historians to annotate, analyze, etc.
On 10/3/2012 6:22 AM, Gary McGath wrote:
> On 10/2/12 8:44 AM, Paul Orkiszewski wrote:
>> Hi 4libers,
>> Does anyone know of something - a kiosk, an iPad app, a web application
>> - that:
> I don't know of anything like it out there, but let's look at what it
> might take. I've done some software work in connection with Harvard's
> Iranian Oral History Project.
>> - Initiates an oral history interview by getting demographic info and
>> permission to use and stream for scholarly purposes.
> I'm not sure what you're saying here. It sounds as if you're talking
> about automated correspondence with the sources. That would be a huge
> project in itself, so I assume you've got something more narrowly
> focused in mind.
>> - Goes through a standard set of questions (in our case stuff about the
>> Appalachian State experience)
> There are two pieces to this: Recording the responses and storing the
> relevant metadata. The recording probably shouldn't be tied to a
> specific device or application, since field work can involve a lot of
> different conditions. The researcher in the field would want something
> to enter the metadata (who, what, when, where); this would be a
> straightforward piece.
>> - Stores the metadata, permissions release, and pointers to the audio
>> files created for each question in a dbase record
> You don't say what the scope of the work is; from the way you're putting
> the questions, I'm assuming it's a small-scale project with one
> researcher doing the interviews and putting the information together.
> Even so, It's probably best to have the field work be a separate
> application from assembling the information in the database. If nothing
> else, once you're at this point there's more standard software that can
> be used.
>> - Processes the audio through speech recognition either in real time or
>> post-interview, and populates the dbase record with rendered text (at
>> whatever level of accuracy)
> You could do this piece with Dragon; see this post for some discussion:
> A friend of mine is an expert in this area and might be able to answer
> some questions.
>> - Provide a search interface, where the meatadata, demographic info
>> (within reasonable privacy limits), and the transcript (however garbled)
>> is searchable.
> I'd suggest basing something on Apache Lucene.
>> - Crowd source the improvement of the transcriptions over time
> This needs to be better specified. One solution is to put the text onto
> a wiki. If you're talking about integrating it into the application that
> does all the rest, it could get messy.
>> - Package the interface as an app, and set up a machine image on Amazon
>> EC2, such that when someone uses the image and points a browser to it,
>> it goes through a set up routine so that smaller schools and historical
>> societies can set up their own sites in the cloud. I haven't tried
>> streaming on a free tier EC2 server, but you get 30 GB of storage, so
>> you could get a fair number of hours of audio (depending on the
>> settings) before you have to start paying.
> This, I assume, is why you're talking about treating the whole thing as
> a single application. Putting it all together would be a huge chunk of
> work. Dragon's software isn't free, and I don't know of anything for
> free that does decent speech transcription, so that would be a stumbling
> block to making it available to other institutions.
>> Anyone interested in trying it with me if there's nothing already out
>> there? I'm leaning toward iPad, so we'd need iOS, server admin, dbase,
>> and media expertise. I have newbie-but-getting-better skill in the last
>> 3. Zero skill in iOS.
> I'm available for freelance work and it sounds very interesting, but
> you've just outlined a huge project that would be a significant burden
> even for the LoC's resources. That's not to say it can't be useful as a
> blue-sky starting point for something more reasonable. If you have
> funding, let's talk off-list. If you just want to continue blue-skying
> the idea for a while, I'm glad to continue on-list (and I promise not to
> bill you for that :).
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