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Byword: A blog by and for the TW community

New V7 features (rev. 747): Part 1

Software updates usually aren’t very newsworthy, but we think the features release in rev. 747 are worth blogging about! With this update, released in January 2016, we set out to solve a few problems.

Problem #1: A transcriber accidentally types into a Web Linking channel during someone else’s job 

The beauty of Web Linking is its ease of use: Transcribers can create and connect to channels on the fly, without any cumbersome configuration, scheduling, or back-end admin setup. Just click, connect, and transcribe.

But for those who shared the same channel among multiple transcribers — which is common for teamed assignments — this feature made it a little too easy for one transcriber to accidentally stay linked to a channel even when they weren’t supposed to be. 

The result? Clients could potentially see a transcriber’s typing on a different job!

Maintaining confidentiality is paramount in the field of communication access, so we needed a way to help transcribers avoid "accidental" linking. At the same time, our development philosophy is for the product to work reliably and then get out of the way.

The fix: Better visual cues for the transcriber to detect which channels they’re linked to 

If Web Linking is on, you can’t miss it.

When you first open TypeWell, the program checks whether you’ve enabled one or more Web Linking channels. If so — and only if the master linking control is ON — then your Web Linking setup dialog will pop up first. User confirmation is required before launching the program.

NOTE: If linking is OFF and/or if there are no Web Linking channels enabled when you close the TypeWell program, then this pop-up will not display at startup.

Not just IF, but HOW MANY

It’s not unusual for a transcriber to have multiple channels enabled simultaneously. Sometimes they enable a channel on a different TypeWell server to use as a back-up. Sometimes there are multiple consumers viewing the live transcript, and they each need a unique URL. 

A new "channel count" feature quickly shows the transcriber how many channels are enabled. 

This "count" info is now also displayed in the Link menu itself, to remind you how many channels you’re about to link to when toggling the master linking switch from OFF to ON. 

Problem #2: Channel URLs are random, so it's hard to remember which channel is for which job.

When a transcriber copies a Web Linking URL to the clipboard — to send to a client or supervisor — they click on the status bar in the lower right corner of the TypeWell screen.

The fix: The pop-up message now displays the channel's “Reader description” along with the URL.

This info can prevent a transcriber from accidentally sending the URL for one client to a different client. 

So go ahead and enter a reader description for each of your channels!

Ready to update? In your TypeWell program, click Help > Check for updates.


Kate Ervin

Kate became a TypeWell transcriber in 2004 and began training new transcribers in 2009. She has served as TypeWell's Executive Director since 2011.

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