Do you ever sit down at your computer – fingers on the keyboard – and nothing happens?
This happens to me more than I care to admit. It’s one of the reasons I’ve never really been into blogging.
About a month ago I started a big project that entails quite a bit of writing.
I was having a hard time getting into the flow of my creative and technical writing. The process was taking me longer than I hoped, and I was getting discouraged and losing my creativity around the project.
So I started looking for a productivity hack to tackle this problem. And what I realized is that I could simply dictate what I wanted to say, and then go back and edit it. Now, I realize that this is not a huge Tech-Epiphany, but as productivity hacks go – it's EFFECTIVE and EFFICIENT!
Consider how fast you speak versus how fast you can type – with typos, changes and grammatical edits, your word count on-screen would increase dramatically if you were dictating.
So down the rabbit hole, I went to explore dictation and transcription apps. And fortunately, I quickly found information around the built-in voice typing features of Google Docs and my Mac. And the best part is both options are free!
I tested both and found Google Docs voice typing feature to be very accurate, and quick! Such a relief, and before I knew it, I had pages and pages of copy “written.” (I created a Facebook video to demonstrate how easy it is.)
Here are a few simple tips to make your voice-to-text transcription very smooth and easy:
- You have to speak the punctuation that you want. And it's not always perfect.
- Use a headset so that you don't have to yell at your laptop's built-in microphone.
- I'm still working on how to tell the Google transcription that I want to use a number when verses spelling out the word.
- Add any time when you're doing your transcription you can fix something or out of paragraph stop the microphone and then just started again. Pick up right where you left off.
I promise that in just a few short spoken paragraphs you'll have voice-to-text transcription wired, and you'll wonder how you ever lived without it!
Cheers to your success! WendyB
P.S. I dictated this blog post and completed it in half the time!
Note: I also tested the built-in dictation feature on my Mac, and it felt a bit clunky to me.
To turn it on, go into your System Preferences → Keyboard → Dictation.
It's not quite as fast or seamless as the Google Voice Typing, but this is an option you’d rather use Pages or Word, or if you're off-line and don't have access to Google Docs. It will still save you hours of time over the long-run. (Here’s the instructions link for Apple dictation.)