Voice dictation (speech-to-text functionality) is an extremely important feature of Bohemicus. Why would you write your text on your keyboard when you can just dictate it into your Android phone and have it converted into text for you.
The Google speech-to-text engine
Have you ever tried the Google speech-to-text engine in your Android phone and wondered why there is nothing like that for Windows? Especially when you consider that the Google voice engine is pretty good. Perhaps the best on the market. But the problem is that it’s only free of charge in your phone or tablet. If you want to use it on your PC, it’s paid.
PC Windows alternatives
Sure enough, there are also PC alternatives: but they are always paid….and even if you try them, you might discover they are actually not that good. Perhaps they do not work for your minor language, such as Czech, Slovak or Hungarian. Perhaps you notice that their speech engine makes too many mistakes, perhaps it has a problem with the background noise and thus does not work when you have your windows open and there is noise from the street interfering with the speech conversion process.
Well, the Google engine is pretty good. I am not affiliated with Google in any way, I am just saying what I have observed over the years. Their engine just works. For every voice, even when there is some background noise.
But as I have already mentioned, their engine only works free of charge in those Android devices, i.e. phones and tablets. If you want to use it in Windows, you would need to connect to their cloud services… and pay. And it’s not cheap, for a freelance translator.
This is why I have decided to create a dedicated Android/Windows application that would actually use the speech-to-text engine in Android, convert the speech to text and send the resulting text into Windows. And that’s exactly what I did. I took some research, some programming… but finally I have an app I can use to dictate my text into ANY Windows application, be it a CAT tool or MS Word, Excel etc.
How it works
Of course, you will need 2 applications: one for Android to convert and transmit the converted text into your PC, one for the PC itself to receive converted data.
And that’s exactly what you have at your disposal – there is the Bohemicus application for Android (go to the Google Play portal and download and install the „Bohemicus“ app, and there is also the Bohemicus application for Windows 7/8/10. You can download it right here on this portal.
These 2 application connect to each other through Bluetooth or WiFi.
How to activate the speech-to-text engine
Once you have installed both of these application, i.e. into your Android and into your PC, the process is pretty much straightforward: Just press the tilde key on your PC. Bohemicus will transmit an initiating signal from your PC into your Android device and start the listening process. You can dictate your text now. When you are done speaking, just press the tilde key again. The listening stops, your dat will be converted to text and send back to your PC, where it will be inserted into the application you are currently using, such as a CAT tool, a word processing app, a web form, etc.
The financial costs
And all of this costs you exactly NOTHING, it’s completely free of charge. You don’t pay a penny for this speech conversion process. This could potentially save you relatively large amounts of money you would otherwise pay for your voice dictation applicaiton or for the Google Cloud voice dictation services.
The benefits of voice dictation
Voice dictation can greatly improve your effectivity when translating. It can be some 30% if you normally type some 200 chars/min on your keyboard. But of course, the faster typer you are, the less benefit it will bring. On the other hand, dictating feels much more natural and less fatiguing.