Guest post: Subtitling software

Hi, my dear readers! Please do not think I do not love you anymore, because I certainly do. I hope you miss me as much as I miss you! 😦

As some of you may already know, I’ll be on vacation for two weeks in early April, so things are crazier than usual on this side of the computer. I promise I’ll give more attention to the blog when I return from my vacation.

For now, please welcome our return guest, João Souza.

Welcome, João!


Genius Subtitler – a peek at the development of a subtitling tool

Genius Subtitler is a subtitling software designed by experienced professionals in the Brazilian Audiovisual Translation market. Our efforts are channeled at bridging the gap between expensive made-for-companies-suites and subtitlers, maximizing productivity and improving overall quality with the most needed features any subtitling software should offer for a fair price. GS is developed in a partnership between programmers and subtitling instructors with the intent to facilitate learning, mainly in on-line environments.

The roots of Genius Subtitler dates back to the years 2010/11 when the software started being developed by a major subtitling agency in Brazil. At the time, still just an intern and beta tester, I realized how the software had a positive impact on the workflow of the company and was eager to see it as a game-changer in the next few years. It is crucial to mention here that at that point most of the actors in the AVT industry in Brazil had no middle ground, companies as well as freelancers had either to afford expensive suites or resort to unreliable, limited and far from professional free solutions. The ever growing AVT market alongside with its inherent technical aspects dictated by more recent audiovisual content distribution technologies, like streaming, and the demand for faster turnarounds called for affordable and efficient software solutions. Unfortunately, by reasons beyond my power, the software, which by the time was widely used by employees and contributors, had its development halted. However, this fact actually marked the beginning of a new chapter for Genius Subtitler.

As a subtitling instructor, training new subtitlers and also helping in the updating of subtitlers’ skills from companies where I have worked as a consultant, I realized that working with the above mentioned free and amateur software solutions was like banging my head against a brick wall. And that was when I contacted the company that started developing Genius and was surprisingly welcomed to bring the project back to life. I have taught on-line Subtitling courses through ACME E-Learning where I am director of pedagogy, so the first issue addressed was the ease of use of the software’s interface. We had to be sure it was accessible and clean enough to help subtitlers concentrate only in the information they need for a job, be it translating from scratch, working with a template, proofreading or during quality check. Then we worried about proofreading features that allowed clearer and more precise feedbacks to help apprentices on their way to join the workforce and last but not least productivity boost features aimed at facilitating mostly the technical aspect of subtitling.

Although it has been designed with apprentices in mind, Genius Subtitler is a professional scalable tool capable of being seamlessly integrated to the workflow of companies irrespectively of its size as well as meeting the needs of individual freelancers.

Anyone remotely related to the field of translation knows about the technological challenges we have to face, and I dare to say these challenges are maximized when we are dealing with audiovisual content, however challenges are the fuel that keep us at Genius Soft going. So you might be asking yourself about what the future holds for us… well, check our Facebook page and website for news and stay in touch. By now, all I can say is that we are extending our expertise to Dubbing Translation and Audio Description and looking forward to incorporate new features to Genius Subtitler.

Thank you, once again, for accepting my invitation and taking the time to write to our blog, João! I’m not a subtitler, but it’s a pleasure to publish about the software. I’m sure a lot of people will benefit a lot with it. Great job! 🙂

About the author
P.002João Artur Souza is the Pedagogical Director at ACME e-Learning, where he teaches on-line courses, webinars and workshops on a regular basis. He is a visiting professor at Universidade Veiga de Almeida (UVA) teaching an Audiovisual Translation non-degree graduation course. João Souza has been a translator since 2009, having translated more than 200 hours of different genres for major TV broadcasts. His abilities extend to QC, proofreading and subtitler’s training.
He is a graduation student at PUC-Rio working on his dissertation on subtitle processing.

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