Emerging Apps and Interesting Projects

A Tool To Capture Quotes From Video:

‘quickQuote’ is a new open source tool from the Times which uses ‘Spoken Data’ (a speech to text API, or Application Programming Interface) to generate a full transcription of the spoken element of any video. The text appears adjacent to the video as it plays, and clicking on any generated text, takes the user to the corresponding point on the video.

In an interview with Nieman Lab, creator Pietro Passarelli explains that there are some limitations on the app in it’s current form, but that it can be adapted readily as required;

‘Passarelli says he chose SpokenData, a smaller Czech company, because it produces more accurate transcriptions and was open to making tweaks and adding features (such as the ability to delete a duplicate uploaded video). SpokenData currently only transcribes 15 minutes of audio for free, but other news outlets who download quickQuote can feel free to swap into the transcription component of the code services of their choosing’.

A New Live Streaming App:

Caroline Scott at Journalism UK reviews new live streaming app ‘Live in Five’ this week.

Footage can be filmed vertically or horizontally and the app (iOS or Android) automatically uploads to YouTube via a linked Google+ account, for saving and easy sharing. As viewers can watch footage through YouTube the audience doesn’t need to have downloaded the app themselves (unlike other live streaming competitors), making it an ideal tool for journalists to broadcast from news scenes using only a mobile phone.

‘This app lacks the live interaction with viewers that other similar apps enjoy, such as Periscope’s on-screen comments and hearts, but it makes for an easy way to capture and share live moments directly to YouTube from your mobile device’.

A Widget That Lets Readers Ask Questions:

Hearken is the technical solution to a series of questions posed by Jennifer Brandel in a Medium post entitled ‘Questions Are The New Comments’. Brandel who is the CEO of Hearken and founder of WBEZ’s CuriousCity wants journalism to be driven by questions from it’s readers. Now three New Jersey newsrooms (Brick City Live, New Brunswick Today and NJTV) are adopting the Hearken tool on their websites in the hope that they can increase audience collaboration.

As a ‘white label’ tool Harken can be configured to integrate into a host website. Molly de Aguiar explains how it works in a report for Media Shifts Idea Lab:

Each of the three sites has a Hearken widget on their site where anyone can ask a question that they are curious about. How often are Newark buildings hit by lightning? Are there secret tunnels under the Rutgers campus? Which New Jersey communities have the most polluted water? Anything you can imagine. Anything you are curious about. The public then votes on what question they want to see answered, and the person who asked the winning question gets to come along with the journalist and help investigate and report the answer. “Suddenly, everyday people are represented in the news without needing to have done something notably terrible or remarkably wonderful,” writes Brandel. “Newsrooms get stories no other newsroom is doing, and stories that are directly relevant to their audiences. And members of the public get to share in the super power that reporters have long had: the ability to ask questions and get answers from just about anyone, including people in power.”