Why Go Digital for Dictation? (Part 1)

While time moves forward, technology continues to work towards simplifying the lives of users and quickening real time correspondence. As an example, look at mobile phones. At one time we had to use a normal telephone line and utilize the services of an operator to physically patch a connection. Today, digital technology has enhanced the way people interact and connect with one another. We can pull a handheld device out of our pocket and reach anyone, anywhere, all without being limited solely to verbal communication. Texting, access to social media, and video messaging simplify instantaneous correspondence, creating the era of immediate gratification that we have grown accustomed to.

The same technological revolution applies to your camera. The storage capacity for film cameras was limited to only 24 images and changing rolls required users to interrupt or even miss capturing a moment. The method of developing those pictures was tedious, required a fair amount of skill, and took far too long to create and review the finished product.

Using a digital camera, you can save what seems like a limitless amount of pictures to a memory card, transfer them to a computer, and send them to as many people as you would like, seamlessly, within minutes. Online photo sharing from services like Facebook or Instagram allow for unlimited access, regardless of location, diminishing the need for tangible a album --  a topic I will expound upon in a later blog post.

The world of dictation faces similar lifestyle improvements. Like film in cameras, replacing cassettes in recorders interrupts an author’s train of thought, affecting the ability to capture significant ideas as they happen. There are few things more frustrating than finding the trail leading to your "ah-ha!" moment, only to have it cut short by the 'click' of a full tape. That minute or so that you have to spend swapping cassettes could easily be the moment where a detail goes overlooked. It is difficult to backtrack and try to catch up on lost momentum, which is why the ability to hold over 300 hours of recording time on a single card is so vital. It may seem overkill, but the important thing is having the ability to record ideas without interruption.

After recording to a digital file, sending it along to anyone you choose is simple. Unlike analog dictation, which requires making hard copies of the tape -- a process that diminishes the audio quality with each reprint -- you can simply email any file to as many people as you would like, all while maintaining a perfect standard of sound and organizational file tags.

Keep in mind that tapes get eaten or misplaced, analog solutions have more moving parts that are easily broken, and the sound quality of tapes deteriorates over time. There was definitely a time and place for analog, but for how advanced the digital solutions are, your workflow cannot afford to be stifled by tape. Think of it this way, why would someone watch VHS when they can stream the same film in flawless video quality?

Read part 2 of this article here.

#MCDictation #MCDigital #MCTechnology

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