Help those who are deaf, hard of hearing, or whose native language is not English*. Increase comprehension by enabling viewers to see your spoken words.
* if English is not your native language, you can create captions in the language that your community speaks, and provide a proper translation of terms, and better way to explain.
Use the Captioning Tool to:
- Read text file with your script
- Time-code captions
- Edit and Adjust
- Generate Caption File -- YouTube uses SRT format. Microsoft uses VTT.
If you posted a video 5 years ago, you could add a caption file to it tomorrow!
What about automatically generated transcriptions?
Often automatically generated transcriptions are wrong, and sometimes the words are total gibberish.
Advantage of transcribing yourself
- correctly write what is said, or fix what was said to make it right (smile)
- ensure technical terms are properly used
- split lines where it makes sense
- add information and correct what was actually said
- ensure better translations
- give words to search engines
- make training videos more effective and accessible
- add words to music videos so others can sing along,
- better understanding
Quick Jump To Sections
Download Access database application to create CAPTION files for videos:
(269K, unzips to 1.35 mb ACCDB Access database)
Be sure to save the accdb file from the zip as its own file. Access doesn't work right inside a zip file.
The Captioning Tool may only be used freely -- you may not modify it and sell it, or use its ideas to make or change a commercial product. Please share your modifications back to the community. Thanks!
If you've never used Access, no problem! You probably have it in your Microsoft Office suite, so the file should open when you double-click its name.
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How to play a caption file
YouTube can play caption files, as can Microsoft channels, and many other places ... but how can you see how the captions look before you upload a file? Some media players you can run on your desktop have an ability to play caption files. VLC can play a caption (subtitle) file when a video plays.
VLC, free media player for Windows
To Play captions in VLC:
Open the video. Right-click a video file name in Windows Explorer or My Computer, choose Open With > VLC Media Player
or double-click file if VLC is your default player.
- Immediately pause the video.
Specify caption file. From the menu: Videos > Subtitles Track > Open File
... and then pick the SRT (caption) file
- Play the video and now you see the captions too.
The default folder when you browse to a caption file is the folder with the video file, so for quick picking, it is good to put the caption files in the same place. After the Access tool makes the caption file, I move it to the folder with my video. Language name in the caption file name is in case there might be translations.
If a single caption time is wrong, pause the video, look at the time, and correct the time in Access. If all the captions are off by a set amount of time, like 1 or 2 seconds, use the Adjust Time feature. Generate a new caption file, and over-write the old one.
Many places, such as YouTube, allow you to upload caption files any time! So you can create captions for videos you have already posted.
It is my hope that you will use this tool and add caption files to be played with your videos so that more people can get more benefit.
Since the caption files are external to your video, caption files can be created and modified any time -- even if you published your video years ago! Captions cause your video to get more attention and those who need them really appreciate you ... and captions are also good for SEO (Search Engine Optimization)
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Click the play button in the middle of image to watch the video on this page ...
... or click here to watch on YouTube
Now you can also press ENTER to record time (in addition to clicking)
Help for Camtasia
If you are using Camtasia to create videos, here is a good reference:
- Tony Jollens for help with the ADO Stream code so that foreign characters and Unicode are supported.
- those who take time to email with appreciation for captions.
Free Book on Access: Access Basics
Free Tutorials: Video Tutorials