SHARE



ABOUT THE AUTHOR


Mike Bergelson
Mike Bergelson is responsible for developing new product and business model strategies for Cisco's Unified Communications portfolio. Prior to this...
Read Full Bio >>
SHARE



Mike Bergelson | July 25, 2010 |

 
   

The State of Transcription for UC: Part 2.3: Areas of Innovation

The State of Transcription for UC: Part 2.3: Areas of Innovation Medical transcriptions and closed captioning are likely areas for growing benefits as technology and human processes improve.

Medical transcriptions and closed captioning are likely areas for growing benefits as technology and human processes improve.

This is a continuation of my blog post from last week, part of a series of posts on the application of transcription in unified communications.

In this and the previous two posts, I discuss the state of transcription today. In the final post in the series, I'll address where I believe the market may be going and some key areas of innovation that can help us derive more benefit from recorded audio and video content.

Medical Transcription
The medical transcription market is enormous--around $20–25B globally and is expected to grow around 15–20% per year for the foreseeable future.

As most people know (or could guess) the traditional model of live agent transcriptions is slowly giving way to a semi-automated solution where system-generated transcriptions are edited by humans. Research suggests that agent productivity increases 30–50% (some vendors claim that productivity doubles) with a first pass by an automatic speech recognition (ASR) engine, further underscoring the economic benefit of this approach.

Clinicians are also using speaker-dependent ASR engines to obviate the need for outsourcing altogether, although the growth of this approach has been relatively slow as clinicians perceive a high set-up cost (both the user and language models must be trained) and may not be willing to commit to the necessary behavior changes.

To wit, a Nuance Communications employee concedes that it is "often more important to train users how to use speech than it is to train speech systems how to recognize users" in his thorough response to a thought-provoking blog post by Robert Fortner cleverly titled Rest in Peas: The Unrecognized Death of Speech Recognition.

In large part, the dollars attached to creating efficiencies in the medical transcription market will inure to the benefit of UC transcription solutions since cost, turn-around time, accuracy and privacy are all major issues for medical transcriptions. Examples of applicable innovations include passive speaker-dependent language model training, the use of multiple speech engines to increase accuracy and improved workflow for human editing.

Closed Captioning
Recorded video is quickly becoming a common medium for intra- (e.g., training) and inter-enterprise (e.g., marketing) communications. The same benefits--speed of consumption, improved retention, searchability, etc.--that users experience with transcriptions for recordings of live events can be found with "canned" or made-for-video content.

There isn't too much demand for real-time transcription in the enterprise context (there are use cases around company-wide meetings requiring real-time translation), but the approaches applied help guide some thinking that I'll revisit in my final post in this series.

Traditionally, real-time closed captioning is created in a two part process. First the dialog is converted by a stenographer (think the person who's asked to read back the testimony in your favorite courtroom drama) into a phonetic representation of what's been said. Stenographers and closed captioners routinely record dialog at approximately 200 words per minute (as one would expect given that this is the upper bound on typical speech rates).

The output of the stenotype machine is then fed into a system that converts the phonemes into actual words. Inaccuracies in this process account for the odd words that we see in the closed captioning ribbons from time to time on TV screens in public places (or at home if we rely on closed captioning).

In some cases, as with the BBC, agents with crisp enunciation actually re-speak what's being said into stenomasks (specially-designed masks with a microphone embedded inside that cover one's mouth to block outside noise). This parallel dictation is then fed into a speaker-dependent ASR engine to produce the near-real time transcription with high accuracy.

Interestingly, closed captioning in the US and UK appears to be used most often (by a factor of four to one!) by viewers for whom English is a second language rather than by the intended audience--those with hearing impairments. As we start to transcribe video and audio in the enterprise context, I believe we can count on similar examples of "unintended benefits."

Google made big news in the closed captioning world (as with voicemail transcription) by announcing an Automatic Caption Feature for YouTube videos in November 2009. In a clever (or just honest) move, much of the messaging around this feature anticipates the inaccuracies of the machine translation and re-focuses attention on the important benefit of making video content accessible to hearing impaired viewers around the world.

The clever use of speaker-dependent speech engines and crowd-sourcing create some interesting possibilities in other areas, as we'll explore in my next post.





COMMENTS



Enterprise Connect Orlando 2018
March 12-15 | Orlando, FL

Connect with the Entire Enterprise Communications & Collaboration Ecosystem


Stay Up-to-Date: Hear industry visionaries in Keynotes and General Sessions delivering the latest insight on UC, mobility, collaboration and cloud

Grow Your Network: Connect with the largest gathering of enterprise IT and business leaders and influencers

Learn From Industry Leaders: Attend a full range of Conference Sessions, Free Programs and Special Events

Evaluate All Your Options: Engage with 190+ of the leading equipment, software and service providers

Have Fun! Mingle with sponsors, exhibitors, attendees, guest speakers and industry players during evening receptions

Register now with code NOJITTEREB to save $200 Off Advance Rates or get a FREE Expo Pass!

December 13, 2017

The two major vendors in the Unified Communications space, Cisco and Microsoft, are both strongly promoting their cloud UC deployments. If cloud UC is on your enterprises roadmap, but you dont want

November 29, 2017

As video conferencing use rises in the enterprise, businesses are looking for ways to bring this technology out of traditional conference room and make it more broadly accessible. That's made the h

November 1, 2017

Your customers (internal and external) demand that you offer them the ability to connect by any means. With the adoption of cloud communications tools you now have access to an expanded portfolio o

November 30, 2017
With a ruling on the FCC's proposed order to dismantle the Open Internet Order expected this month, communications technology attorney Martha Buyer walks us through what's at stake.
October 23, 2017
Wondering which Office 365 collaboration tool to use when? Get quick pointers from CBT Nuggets instructor Simona Millham.
September 22, 2017
In this podcast, we explore the future of work with Robert Brown, AVP of the Cognizant Center for the Future of Work, who helps us answer the question, "What do we do when machines do everything?"
September 8, 2017
Greg Collins, a technology analyst and strategist with Exact Ventures, delivers a status report on 5G implementation plans and tells enterprises why they shouldn't wait to move ahead on potential use ....
August 25, 2017
Find out what business considerations are driving the SIP trunking market today, and learn a bit about how satisfied enterprises are with their providers. We talk with John Malone, president of The Ea....
August 16, 2017
World Vision U.S. is finding lots of goodness in RingCentral's cloud communications service, but as Randy Boyd, infrastructure architect at the global humanitarian nonprofit, tells us, he and his team....
August 11, 2017
Alicia Gee, director of unified communications at Sutter Physician Services, oversees the technical team supporting a 1,000-agent contact center running on Genesys PureConnect. She catches us up on th....
August 4, 2017
Andrew Prokop, communications evangelist with Arrow Systems Integration, has lately been working on integrating enterprise communications into Internet of Things ecosystems. He shares examples and off....
July 27, 2017
Industry watcher Elka Popova, a Frost & Sullivan program director, shares her perspective on this acquisition, discussing Mitel's market positioning, why the move makes sense, and more.
July 14, 2017
Lantre Barr, founder and CEO of Blacc Spot Media, urges any enterprise that's been on the fence about integrating real-time communications into business workflows to jump off and get started. Tune and....
June 28, 2017
Communications expert Tsahi Levent-Levi, author of the popular BlogGeek.me blog, keeps a running tally and comprehensive overview of communications platform-as-a-service offerings in his "Choosing a W....
June 9, 2017
If you think telecom expense management applies to nothing more than business phone lines, think again. Hyoun Park, founder and principal investigator with technology advisory Amalgam Insights, tells ....
June 2, 2017
Enterprises strategizing on mobility today, including for internal collaboration, don't have the luxury of learning as they go. Tony Rizzo, enterprise mobility specialist with Blue Hill Research, expl....
May 24, 2017
Mark Winther, head of IDC's global telecom consulting practice, gives us his take on how CPaaS providers evolve beyond the basic building blocks and address maturing enterprise needs.
May 18, 2017
Diane Myers, senior research director at IHS Markit, walks us through her 2017 UC-as-a-service report... and shares what might be to come in 2018.
April 28, 2017
Change isn't easy, but it is necessary. Tune in for advice and perspective from Zeus Kerravala, co-author of a "Digital Transformation for Dummies" special edition.
April 20, 2017
Robin Gareiss, president of Nemertes Research, shares insight gleaned from the firm's 12th annual UCC Total Cost of Operations study.
March 23, 2017
Tim Banting, of Current Analysis, gives us a peek into what the next three years will bring in advance of his Enterprise Connect session exploring the question: Will there be a new model for enterpris....
March 15, 2017
Andrew Prokop, communications evangelist with Arrow Systems Integration, discusses the evolving role of the all-important session border controller.
March 9, 2017
Organizer Alan Quayle gives us the lowdown on programmable communications and all you need to know about participating in this pre-Enterprise Connect hackathon.
March 3, 2017
From protecting against new vulnerabilities to keeping security assessments up to date, security consultant Mark Collier shares tips on how best to protect your UC systems.
February 24, 2017
UC analyst Blair Pleasant sorts through the myriad cloud architectural models underlying UCaaS and CCaaS offerings, and explains why knowing the differences matter.
February 17, 2017
From the most basics of basics to the hidden gotchas, UC consultant Melissa Swartz helps demystify the complex world of SIP trunking.
February 7, 2017
UC&C consultant Kevin Kieller, a partner at enableUC, shares pointers for making the right architectural choices for your Skype for Business deployment.
February 1, 2017
Elka Popova, a Frost & Sullivan program director, shares a status report on the UCaaS market today and offers her perspective on what large enterprises need before committing to UC in the cloud.
January 26, 2017
Andrew Davis, co-founder of Wainhouse Research and chair of the Video track at Enterprise Connect 2017, sorts through the myriad cloud video service options and shares how to tell if your choice is en....
January 23, 2017
Sheila McGee-Smith, Contact Center/Customer Experience track chair for Enterprise Connect 2017, tells us what we need to know about the role cloud software is playing in contact centers today.