Time Codes with Multiple Simultaneous Transcripts

Placing Time Codes in Transcripts is an essential part of making accurate selections in Media Files for analysis, at least in Transcript-dependent analytic approaches. This Tutorial page introduces issues to consider when preparing to analyze data with multiple simultaneous transcripts.

Time Coding Transcripts Independently

When working with multiple simultaneous transcripts, you can time code each transcript independently of all others. Sometimes, this is essential. Sometimes, different transcripts represent different aspects of the media data that occur on different time scales in a way that requires independent time coding. When this is the case, you can time-code each transcript independently in whatever ways make the most sense for each of your transcripts.

But … (a word about how Multiple Simultaneous Transcript Clips work)

As you have probably already heard, time codes determine the boundaries of your selections during analysis of media data with Transana. This has important implications for working with Multiple Simultaneous Transcripts.

When you make a selection in a single transcript, Transana looks for the time code before your selection and sets that as your clip starting position. It looks for the time code following the end of your selection and sets that as your clip ending position. When you make selections in multiple transcripts, Transana selects the earliest starting time code across all transcripts with selections and the latest ending time code across all transcript, making the most inclusive selection from the available selections. While this behavior is perfectly logical, it sometimes leads to clips that are unsatisfactorily large when different transcripts operate on different time scales. The resulting clips are simply too long, starting too early or ending too late.

Sometimes, this is unavoidable, but sometimes it is due to really small differences between time codes.

Coordinated Time Codes

The solution to this problem is to be conscious of close time codes and to coordinate or match very close time codes when possible. There are two ways to accomplish this aligning of time codes.

Insert Matching Time Codes

Let’s say you have 2 transcripts in which you want to place the same time code, neither of which has the time code yet.

First, put both time codes in Edit mode.

Second, position your media file at the desired position using keyboard shortcuts from one of the Transcripts.

Third, place the transcript cursor in the desired position in both transcripts

Next, if you have additional transcripts you do not want to receive the new time code, either take those transcripts out of edit mode or make a selection (highlight characters rather than having an insertion point cursor).

Finally, press the Current button in the Visualization Window.

Pressing this button inserts a time code in each open transcript that is in edit mode, does not have a text selection, and whose cursor is positioned so that it does not violate the requirement that time codes be in linear order, which would trigger a Time Code Sequence Error.

Position with a Time Code from one Transcript prior to inserting a Time Code in another Transcript

Let’s say you have 2 transcripts, and you want to place a new time code in one that will match an existing time code in the other. For the sake of our example, let’s say that Transcript 1 has an existing time code that you want to match in Transcript 2.

If Transcript 1 is NOT in Edit Mode: Click the appropriate segment in Transcript 1. This will position your media file at the time code before your current cursor position, identifying it as the time code to be duplicated.

If Transcript 1 IS in Edit Mode: Click the appropriate segment in Transcript 1. Since the transcript is in Edit mode, the media file will not change position. Right-click the transcript, then quickly right-click it again. The first right-click will cause your media file to be re-positioned to the time code preceding your current cursor position and will start playing the media file, while the second right-click will pause media playback. This will identify the preceding time code as the one to be duplicated.

Now place your cursor in Transcript 2 and press Ctrl-T on Windows or Cmd-T on macOS.

This will trigger time code insertion into Transcript 2 at the current position of the media file, which you set in Transcript 1 by following the steps above. The position in Transcript 2 must not violate the linear order of time codes in a transcript or you will get a Time Code Sequence Error.

The more you can pair, match, or synchronize time codes between Multiple Simultaneous Transcripts, the easier you will find it to make selections during analysis of this data.