Text to speech technology still needs work.
that in mind, let's do a little math.
You cite 500 hours to convert a
book to digital format. A typist typing at a speed of 60 "words per minute"
(defined as 5 characters = 1 word, and 60 wpm is pretty slow for someone half
decent at the job) working 8 hours a day, 5 days a week would work for 12.5
weeks (62.5 days, 3 months).
They would produce a document containing 9
million characters. 500 (hours) * 60 (minutes in 1 hour) * 300 (characters per
minute) = 9,000,000).
indicates the bible has some 3,536,489 letters. If you subtract that from the 9
million characters then divide the two, you'll find roughly 1.5 spaces per
letter. That's a lot of spaces.
If we assume 1 space per word, there's
773,693 spaces in the bible. That puts total characters at
The typist working at 60 wpm (and I'm sure you could easily
get around 80 wpm) should finish transcribing the bible to digital plain text in
a little less then 250 hours.
Even factoring in proof reading time - one
can proof read faster then one can type. So completing the bible in 250 hours
still leaves plenty of room for proof reading and correction well below an
assumed reading speed of 120 wpm. Word has it the average reading speed is 250
wpm which completes the bible in 47 hours, or 5.9 8-hour days. Well below the
Compared with novels, the bible is pretty thick. Compared
with Technical books, encyclopedias, dictionaries, etc. the bible can be
considered thin. This comparison is based on my own personal
So if it really does take 500 hours to get a book digitized
to plain text (which can then be easily sent to many different formats) I
certainly hope the average book size they are dealing with is twice the size of
If the average is smaller - someone is doing something wrong.
Perhaps if the technology itself is so poor it really does take 500 hours to
digitize the bible to plain text then the most cost-effective solution is: hire
Note: The above assumes a first-time conversion. Once
converted to basic digital text the first time - it can then be stored so the
conversion of that particular book doesn't have to occur again.
firm believer that if the job can be done more efficiently by the use of
technology then it makes sense that technology is used. But if the new
technology makes the job less efficient - get rid of it.
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