CMCI’s Dr Richard Howells has accepted an invitation to join the advisory board of a British Library (BL) research project to investigate the use of speech-to-text technology in archiving and (crucially) cataloguing radio and television programmes for academic use in the arts and humanities.
The BL have only relatively recently become involved in storing “time-based” media, and are aware that film and sound recordings have not been browsable in the same way as textual sources. Nor are these resources commonly indexed for ease of searching. Hence the need for exploring speech-to-text technology.
The ultimate intention is not only to open significant audio-visual collections to British Library users, but to demonstrate the huge potential for speech-to-text technologies to open up audio-visual research resources to academic researchers more generally.
The project will be lead by Dr Luke McKernan, Lead Curator Moving Image at the British Library. It is funded by both the BL and the Arts and Humanities Research Council to the tune of £250,000. Dr Howells is very pleased to be involved in this as he has long been an advocate of the need to archive and searchably catalogue time-based broadcast media for academic research.