The Quikscribe Player can work independently by itself or part of work-group, whereby the multiple typist work from a central typing queue.
The Quikscribe Player also has global Hot-keys, which means you can control certain actions of the Quikscribe Player while working within other programs e.g. Microsoft Word or Word Perfect.
The Hot-Keys are user definable, which means if you ever encounter a conflict with other programs, you can easily change the associated Hot-keys to resolve the conflict.
The Quikscribe Player has an option under the Settings Icon to automatically notify the typist when new files arrive. Depending on the current status of the Quikscribe Player and the type of file that has arrived, determines the visual feedback provided to the typist (as demonstrated and documented below)
Yellow speaker indicates that no files are currently waiting to be transcribed
Green stable speaker indicates that a file is currently open (being transcribed) and that one or more files are currently waiting to be transcribed
Green flashing speaker indicates no file is currently open (being transcribed) but one or more files are currently waiting to be transcribed
Purple stable speaker indicates that a file is currently open (being transcribed) and that one or more Overdue files are currently waiting to be transcribed
Purple flashing speaker indicates no file is currently open (being transcribed) but one or more Overdue files are currently waiting to be transcribed
Red stable speaker indicates that a file is currently open (being transcribed) and that one or more Urgent files are currently waiting to be transcribed
Red flashing speaker indicates that no file is currently open (being transcribed) and but one or more Urgent files are currently waiting to be transcribed.
Note: This ‘Automatic File Notification’ feature works regardless if the typist has the Quikscribe Player open or closed. Which means files waiting for transcription can never overlooked or forgotten
The Quikscribe Player is able to import and open the following audio formats.
- WAV (Wave) – The .wav file is an audio file format, created by Microsoft, which has become the standard audio format for PC’s. The .wav file format has been accepted as the preferred interchange medium for other computer platforms, such as Macintosh. This allows content developers and programs to freely move audio files between platforms.
- DSS (Digital Speech Standard) – The .dss format is proprietary audio format used by Olympus and Philips range of portable digital voice recorders, which can produced very small (compressed) audio files for transcription. The major benefit of these portable digital voice recorders is, that you have the freedom of full mobility, which is a feature that the Quikscribe Recorder can NOT offer, as it is PC based. However if used together (hybrid solution) you can have all of the advanced dictation and transcription benefits which Quikscribe offers and a integrated portable recording solution, which Olympus provides.
- IAF (Intelligent Audio File) - The IAF format is a proprietary audio format created by Quikscribe Pty Ltd specifically designed for advanced PC based digital dictation and transcription. In addition to producing very small (compressed) audio files, the IAF format has several other advanced features. For example, it is able to insert text attachments, insert pictures and other files within itself. Lastly, it has a small database within every file, that keeps track of the files history for management purposes.
* MP2, MP3 (including files with VBR (variable bitrate))
* VOX (Dialogic ADPCM)
* RAW (PCM, ALAW, ULAW and others)
* G.721, G.723, G.726
* Mobile Voice
* Ogg Vorbis
Note: Whenever an audio file is imported and opened by either the Quikscribe Recorder or Quikscribe Player, they are automatically imported and converted to a IAF (Intelligent Audio File). The reason that this is done, is so the audio file now inherits all of the advanced features associated with the IAF format, such as the ability to embedd text, insert images, files and attachements and be encrypted. It also means that the file can now be fully managed by the Quikscribe Manager as it now has its own metadata within it, which both the Quikscribe Recorder and Quikscribe Player can write to and the Quikscribe Manager can interrogate.
The Quikscribe Player is able to insert location markers anywhere within an audio file.
This is a great time saving feature if you need clarification on a point or require more information from the author.
To insert a location marker, simply press CTRL 6 (the default Hot-keys under the Settings Icon).
Once you have inserted a location marker, it is possible to add a label or a comment for this marker.
It is also possible to move forward and backwards to different location markers very quickly, using other Hot-keys e.g. CTRL 5 for Previous Marker and CTRL 7 for Next Marker.
Often when a dictation file is created, large amounts of reference material can be narrated verbatim from a source. If this source is in an electronic format e.g. a Word Document, Web Sites or CD-ROM, the Quikscribe Recorder can copy and paste this information into the .iaf (Intelligent Audio File).
When the Quikscribe Player finds one of these attachments (as illustrated in the above screen shot), the Quikscribe Player 1) Automatically stops playing the current audio file. 2) Copies the attachment (text or image) within the Marker to the Windows clipboard. 3) Provides the typist with an audio prompt, signifying that an attachment has been found and copied to the Windows clipboard.
At this stage, the typist can now paste the attachment (text or image) into their current document by pressing CTRL V (paste).
Note: This great time saving feature not only decreases overall dictation and transcription time but it also significantly reduces the chance for any introduced errors.
Note: The best way to fully appreciate this unique feature is to Download an evaluation copy of the Quikscribe Player and complete the 13 minute built-in interactive typing tutorial, which has both a text attachment and image attachment within it.
The Quikscribe Player is able to work seamlessly behind any Windows based word processor or application. To control the audio file, the Quikscribe Player uses a triple action Foot Switch to Play, Stop, Rewind and Fast Forward within the file. The Quikscribe Player also uses global Hot-keys to provide extra functionality, such as Inserting Location Markers etc.
Note: By default the Quikscribe Player will attempt to use Microsoft Word as it default Word Processor. If however you do not use Microsoft Word you can change this by selecting the Settings Tab under the Settings Icon and changing the Default Word Processor path.
All files sent from the Quikscribe Recorder are automatically queued based on the files priority. When a file is sent by an author, the author has the ability to set a Required by time for the file to be completed by. For example, if 4 hours was selected, the Quikscribe Recorder adds this value (4 hours) to the current date and time and saves this information to the beginning of the file being sent for transcription. As a result, the file being sent, now has a prefix added, as illustrated below.
Note: If a file is sent as being Urgent, the Quikscribe Recorder automatically puts a 00 for the Year value. As a result, when listed within a directory, it will always appear first within the queue. Also because the file is Urgent, it is displayed in red text. If there is multiple Urgent files, the file that was sent first, will occupy the first position in the queue and so on and so forth. If at anytime a file requested turnaround time is not achieved, the file will now be viewed by the Quikscribe Player from this point on as being Overdue, so rather than the file notification flashing Green, it will now flash Red additionally when displayed, it will be displayed in Red text also.
The Quikscribe Player comes with a built-in interactive multimedia tutorial.
Being interactive, you do not need to read anything, just listen and follow the instructions. If you ever need to train someone, all you need to do is select Play Tutorial from the Help menu.
Note: If you have not already done so, go to our Download page and download and install a 30-day evaluation copy of the Quikscribe Player now.
Under the File menu it is possible to link a document to an audio file. The benefit being that if the audio file being transcribed is closed, the associated document being typed is linked and saved within the audio file. When the audio file reopened by you or another typist, the linked document automatically opens up. Plus as mentioned above, the typist has the ability to add and view comments.
Every IAF (Intelligent Audio File) used by the Quikscribe Recorder and the Quikscribe Player has an internal database within it, which keeps track of everything that happens to the file. This information can also be accessed by other 3rd party applications. For example we have a created a sample document called Quikscribe Template.dot. Which has every field within an IAF listed and documented.
If you download and install the Quikscribe Player, open up an audio file and then open this template document, it will automatically interrogate the current audio file open within the Quikscribe Player and populate the word document with all the relevant field values. If you then want to make your own custom templates, all you need to do is modify this sample document and save it with a new name.
Whenever a file is being transcribed the percentage (%) completed is always visible in the Task-bar. The percentage completed is calculated by dividing the current file position by the audio duration. The benefit being that while a typist is transcribing, they can easily see how much they have done.
The other benefit of the percentage completed, is that this value is continually being updated within the .iaf (Intelligent Audio File), which means the Quikscribe Manager not only know the who is working on the file and their current position of the typist in the file, but the Quikscribe Manager is also able to calculate the E.C.T. (Estimated Completion Time) for the file.
Often when audio is recorded for dictation the audio level of the recording is very low; as a result it can make the task of transcription very difficult. If you are using a tape based transcribing machine your options are limited. However with the Quikscribe Player, it is possible to “Normalize” (amplify) the signal electronically as illustrated below. Often when audio is recorded for dictation the audio level of the recording is very low; as a result it can make the task of transcription very difficult. If you are using a tape based transcribing machine your options are limited. However with the Quikscribe Player, it is possible to “Normalize” (amplify) the signal electronically as illustrated below:
How it works is, the Quikscribe Player scans the audio file and calculates the maximum volume (peak) within the file. If the maximum peak is only 30%, it means the file can be amplified by an extra 70%. The Quikscribe Player then re-samples the audio file and amplifies it by this amount. Although this is not a perfect solution (as any background noise will also be amplified) it certainly a lot better than having no other option under such circumstances.
Multiple typists can transcribe from a common queue with the Quikscribe Player. The reason is, that when the Quikscribe Player opens a file, it automatically locks the file. When a file is locked, it no longer appears visible within the queue (even though it is still there). The reason that this is done, is so two or more typist do not accidentally transcribe the same file.
Note: Whenever a file is opened (locked) by a typist, the Quikscribe Player automatically copies within the .iaf (Intelligent Audio File) all of the typists details. So although the file is invisible to all the other typists within the queue, it is still visible to the WP Supervisor using the Quikscribe Manager.
* Typist (D) to transcribe Client_Interview.iaf from 01:29:00 to 02:00:00
As mentioned previously, as soon as a file is open by the Quikscribe Player it is locked and can not be viewed by other typists. However if Display Locked Files is selected from the Open Audio Dialogue, it is possible to view and open a locked file.
The Quikscribe Email Agent runs in the system tray and automatically scans the e-mail in-box every minute (default interval) searching any unread e-mail’s that contain attached IAF (Intelligent Audio Files). If it finds an e-mail with attached IAF, it automatically copies the IAF to a designated directory and then marks the e-mail as being read. Thus allowing transcription via e-mail to work the similar to a L.A.N.
The Quikscribe Player automatically captures and saves the Date & Time the file was opened and the Date & Time the file was completed within the .iaf (Intelligent Audio File). In addition to this, the Quikscribe Player has an internal timer (clock) that keeps track of the total transcription time for each file. This duration is not the time difference between the file was first opened and when completed, nor is it the total time the file was opened for. This duration is the actual time the file was opened and being worked on.
For example, if the Quikscribe Player has a file open but does not detect any activity after 60 seconds, it turns the internal timer off and remains off until more activity is sensed. Which means if a typist opens and transcribes a file for 10 minutes and then accidentally leaves the file open over lunch for 45 minutes and then returns and completes the file after another 10 minutes of transcribing, only the time that was spent transcribing is recorded and saved, not the 45 minutes spent at lunch.
As a result, a WP Supervisor using the Quikscribe Manager can easily produce detailed historical reports, detailing the total amount of audio transcribed by each typist, the total time spent and by dividing these two values, the Quikscribe Manager is able to provide each typist with a ratio e.g. transcription time divided by audio transcribed For example, if a typist has a ratio of 2.4, it means for every hour of audio, it takes this particular typist 2.4 hours to complete.
The closer you can match the transcription speed of a typist with the dictation rate by the author, the greater your productivity will be, since you do not need to start and stop as often. To help achieve this, the Quikscribe Player is able to dynamically vary the Play Rate (up or down) by up to 40% without vary the pitch (frequency). Up until now, this has never been possible with traditional tape based transcribing machines, because as illustrated below, as you decrease the play rate the pitch (frequency) also decreases.
The Quikscribe Player (being digital) is able to reduce the play rate without reducing the pitch (frequency) by re-sampling the file and doing some clever calculations on the fly. The only downside to this process is that a small “warble” sound becomes noticeable the more you decrease the speed. However after a small period of time transcribing, you will find that you do not notice it and compared to the very noticeable pitch change experienced with a traditional tape based transcribing machine, it nothing.
The Quikscribe Player seamlessly integrates with the Quikscribe Manager via the .iaf (Intelligent Audio File). Whenever a file is opened by the Quikscribe Player, it records the typists’ details into the file along with the date and time the file was opened. As the typist transcribes the file, the percentage (%) completed is continually being updated within the file.
As a result, whenever the Quikscribe Manager interrogates the .iaf (Intelligent Audio File) it automatically knows who is working on the file, when the file was opened and the current position within the file. From this information the Quikscribe Manager is able to calculate the E.C.T. (Estimated Completion Time) plus it adds the audio duration remaining, to calculate the queue backlog.
The Quikscribe Player and the Quikscribe Recorder do not need a central server to operate, due to the fact that everything that is needed to be known is stored within the individual audio files. As a result, the Quikscribe Transcription System does not have a “single point of failure”. However to provide maximum flexibility and manageability, both the Quikscribe Recorder and the Quikscribe Player have the ability to export and import their user profile and settings to a central location.
As a result, both the Quikscribe Player and Recorder can be configured and managed remotely by a WP Supervisor with the Quikscribe Manager. A WP supervisor can change just one setting within a user’s profile or can they can make a global change, which will update all profiles. The next time the user opens either the Quikscribe Recorder or Quikscribe Player, the new profile is automatically loaded.