Babelium’s TV appearence

NickDutNikAs we told you in the previous post, after doing a presentation at IEB, Babelium Project’s developers were contacted to record an interview for a local TV magazine show called nickdutnik.

The show aired yesterday and now they’ve put the interview video in their blip.tv channel.

We’ve added a full text transcript (in Basque) of the interview using Universal Subtitles, a very powerful open-source video captioning solution.

If you feel like it, you can translate this subtitles to your own language or, if you think we misspelled something, or are not happy with the synchronization of the texts, you can edit them and make an improved version.

We can see Juanan Pereira (Babelium’s lead project manager) here,  explaining how Babelium works.

First, he describes what the Babelium user’s typical life-cycle consists of : uploading a video, adding subtitles, record a dubbing and asking  some other user’s evaluation of that dubbing.

Then he shows our concern with the licencing of the material the users upload to our site, “we always encourage users to upload Creative Commons material”.

Later on, he comments on the solution the development team came up with to balance the user activities in the application: the credit system. “You can’t pretend to constantly ask things from other people and don’t give anything in return”.

After this, Juanan recalls how Babelium was born “out of a personal need” of several developers.

Last, he reasons the decision to make all the code licensed under GPLv3 and the benefits this kind of licence offers, specially, to projects whose aim is spreading and using minority languages.

The development team wishes to thank all the people who’ve helped us to spread the word about Babelium. We are glad to see our little project is growing and we are so excited about the idea of creating a big, open, speaking-practice community.

See you on the next post 😉

Don’t fear the media, BE the media!

Informatikari Euskaldunen VIII. BilkuraYesterday we were on IEB (Basque Computer Scientists’ Gathering) to give a short speech about Babelium Project.

This year IEB’s main topic was social networks and collaborative applications so we thought Babelium Project should be there.

Our speech went really well. People seemed to be excited about the application and got to ask questions about Babelium. Also, we didn’t have problems at all with the presentation (we’ve seen way too many times that the laptops used in the presentations either don’t have Flash Player installed or don’t even have internet, so this time we were prepared even for the worst. We recorded some videos showcasing some of the app’s features and those were coded to multiple formats too just to be sure they could be played). Several people in the audience congratulated us and showed an interest in collaborating with us to add new features to the app.

We also met some basque-french people and they told us they had heard about the application (this was a nice surprise for us, truth be told) and saw the audience smile when we played a video in which one of the developers was dubbing an excerpt of a basque movie.

One of the questions that arised during the conference was whether Babelium was able to provide machine-based automatic evaluations just in case some user’s evaluation didn’t get evaluated by another user or the user itself didn’t want to be evaluated by another person.

Truth is one of the developers of Babelium worked on this in the past. Using Spinvox’s transcription service API we managed to guess the percentage of accurateness of what the user meant to say in several languages (English, Spanish, German…) with pretty good results. But when Spinvox was bought by Nuance we had to temporarily put down this module. Though, you can still check out the code on our GoogleCode page.

After the speech we spoke with a reporter of a basque tv channel’s (ETB3) show called Nickdutnik and he told us he was interested in Babelium and wanted to interview the development team.

So we went and chatted for almost half an hour! (the guy seemed really interested on the idea as a whole). We don’t know when the interview will be aired but will give you word when the time comes.

So, all in all it was a fine day. Now let’s see was comes out of it.

P.S.: For those interested, you can have a look at the presentation’s slides here (they are in Basque).