Stenovate, Workspace Consolidation

Lauren Lawrence from Stenovate had reached out to me some time ago to alert me to the new platform she was working on. It’s received funding and seems ready to launch by 2019.

The concept seems to be a simple one. We have so many different apps and services we use to track work, send work, find work, handle bills — wouldn’t it be so nice if all of that was contained in one central repository or platform? I think it would it would, and I’m pretty sure that’s the dream behind this.

My advice? If you’re the type of person that wants or needs this kind of service, jump in early. On the one hand, you’ll be showing there’s a serious market for what’s being sold. On the other hand, younger companies, in my experience, are more responsive to their customers’ thoughts and feelings. Your usage of the product and feedback may go into making the product even better.

I’ve been following it for a while and it seems like the kind of thing conceptually that I might’ve wanted as a freelancer. Will it be a success? I think so. If Stenovate is successful in getting people to try it out and addressing concerns of its consumers, it’s got a solid shot at becoming a standard court reporting program and luring stenographers off alternatives like Dropbox. That’s a tall order, but when you’ve got a determined businesswoman and a vision, anything’s possible, a posse ad esse!

Practice, Finger Drill, WKT, Dictation Marker Update

I don’t have a lot of volunteers helping me test the things I put out, and I had inadvertently put out the wrong link to my three programs. I have updated the links at the top of all of these pages to go to a .zip download. You unzip the folder, double click the .exe inside, and it will run the program without installation. Note that most computers will pop up with something saying this program may harm your computer. The code to these programs is public, you can read it for yourself and ask your computer people, it will not harm your computer.

Transcript Marker  – This will take a .txt transcript and mark it for speed. Note that it has been updated so that it will not count Q., A., COURT:, or WITNESS: as a word.

Finger Drill Generator – This program can create finger drills for you. You can also save and load custom lists of words. Note that if you share your saved lists with me, I can include them with future versions. Also note that you should not ask the generator to make files larger than 500 WPM for 300 minutes. That’s 150,000 words. It’s more than enough. I am cautioning you because if you tell it to do 1 million words for 1 million minutes, it’ll happily sit there and generate a text file that large, take a long time to do that, and possibly eat all the space on your computer.

WKT Randomizer – Creates a random written knowledge test. Note that there are small errors in this program and additions that will be made when I finish the Stenonymous Suite.

Also know that I am continuing to try to provide quality dictation on my Youtube. The QA Mario dictation is a little slower than the marked speed because of a previous error where the program counted the Q and A as a word. All future dictations should not have this problem. If you’d like to contribute dictation, I am budgeting about $5 to $10 a month to pay for guest dictators right now, and we should talk. Think along the lines of $5 for a five-minute take.

Computer Coding Fun

Breaking from the traditional unending talk about stenography for a little bit of fun.

If you have Python on a Windows computer, you can download some simple text programs I made. I did not make Python, and you can get it from Python’s site. My programs won’t run without Python unfortunately.

When I initially made this post, I had 3 programs linked. What I decided to do was make a master program called Blade 2018. Blade is our little computer program buddy, and inside Blade 2018 is a calculator, two guessing games, a magic 8-ball, three lucky number generators, a dice roller, and a machine that says 100 nice things about you. From time to time, I may update Blade so that he can do more stuff, or to fix errors in his code.

Because of the way Dropbox works, you can see the coding of the files when you click these links. If you want to be surprised, it’s much better to just quietly download it and see what happens.

Honestly, I had written to Joshua Edwards some weeks ago when I was first reading about the bare basics of computer code. It can reteach us a valuable lesson. Garbage in, garbage out. If you do bad work, you get bad results. That reminder was worthwhile for me, and hopefully is for all reading.

Computer Lagging? Check This

Copied directly from a recent Facebook post I made because I am lazy. Also, the night is dark and full of computer problems.

“PSA: If your computer is acting slow recently (Windows): CTRL+ALT+DELETE, Task Manager. Is the “DISK” column running unbelievably high numbers? (94%+) Yes? Does Super Fetch seem to be the biggest “Disk” thing? Yes? Top left of the task manager, Run, Msconfig.exe, find Super Fetch (a Microsoft Service. You cannot see it if you click hide all Microsoft services.) Disable the damn thing. Restart the computer.
Super Fetch is apparently a Microsoft Service meant to increase your computer speed by preloading programs (based on my Google-Fu.) Well, unfortunately, on both my work and home systems, my home system being a gaming desktop with pretty damn good parts, Super Fetch was running out of control and using up all the computer’s resources, creating a full system freeze and making my CaseCAT type at the speed of snail.
All the usual disclaimers, I’m not responsible if you destroy your computer following my instructions, but if you’re having this Super Fetch problem, your computer is probably already making you feel like replacing it.”