Non-roman and Transcriber

Nicholas Thieberger thien at UNIMELB.EDU.AU
Wed Mar 29 21:25:49 UTC 2006

Transcriber unfortunately seems to be able neither to display nor 
enter Unicode, given that typing Unicode directly into the underlying 
.trs file makes that file unreadable by Transcriber. The discsussion 
of Transcriber on Sourceforge 
( suggests 
the developers have known for some time about the Unicode problem.

I have looked briefly at Transana and find that it is nowhere near as 
simple to use as Transcriber. I think my next step will be to insert 
timecodes via Transcriber since it does that so well and then import 
that file into Elan for transcription.


At 11:12 AM -0600 29/3/06, Claire Bowern wrote:
>I don't use Transcriber (I use Elan) but I have exchanged emails in 
>the past with at least one software developer who did not realise 
>that the ability to display unicode fonts and the ability to enter 
>unicode characters are different coding issue. That may be the 
>problem here.
>I have tried Transana, but not since they introduced unicode 
>support. In fact, the unicode issue was the main reason I chose Elan 
>over Transana. I thought the interface and usability of Transana was 
>great, and it handled everything I wanted it to (audio, video, 
>multiple annotation tiers, tags, exports), but the font issue was 
>the deciding factor for me.
>Heidi Johnson wrote:
>>This is bad news about Transcriber. It doesn't sound like something 
>>we should be
>>promoting through our OLAC tutorials, if it doesn't support any 
>>Unicode fonts.
>>Has anybody tried Transana, from the University of Wisconsin? It's 
>>also free, open
>>source, etc. They discuss Unicode issues on this page:
>>In summary, it's supposed to work with UTF-8 encoding, but they note areas in
>>which theory and practice fail to mesh.

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