The whispers are true

It’s been a long road, but transcription software is finally showing some promise.

02 April 2024

I keep an eye on the app charts and new releases as much as one can with approximately 70 bazillion apps being released weekly. But, barring last month’s Fantasy Hike – a movement-tracking app, built for nerds like me – the new app hype cycle can be distinctly underwhelming these days. Thankfully, my networks on social media typically deliver. In this case, it was journalist and author Gus Silber who replied to my request for recommendations. Silber pointed me to MacWhisper, a speech-to-text tool he called “amazing”. When prolific-interviewer Silber makes such an assessment, ears should prick right up.

Of course, it’s not only journalists who spend hours on tedious, boring, painstaking transcription. Typically, manually transcribing takes three to four times as long as speech, meaning an hour-long meeting might take four to transcribe. It’s a skill that – when performed by a real live person – demands fast or touch typing, a great ear, and simultaneously processing, and such services can be expensive.

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