Voice recognition allows transcripts of Japanese podcasts

Good news for Japanese language learners: the Japanese government has sponsored a website that allows transcription of any podcast recorded in Japanese.  Podcastle produces automated transcription of Japanese podcasts into Kanji, and from there, users of the site can correct and modify as necessary.

I’ve already discussed how useful podcasts and radio shows can be for language learning, especially when teamed with transcripts to refer to or read over before or after listening.  Using a lot of audio for learning will help to improve your listening, pronunciation, and speaking fluency.

By all accounts, the transcriptions aren’t perfect, but that’s to be expected.  As technology gets more accurate, and as the site gains more users, transcripts will become much more accurate.  As it stands, they might be better for intermediate and advanced learners of the language, but it is still a worthwhile effort.

For more information and a review of the service, go to Street-Smart Language Learning™.