Planet Miro

April 16, 2015

by Amara - by janetpcf at April 16, 2015 09:06 AM

janetpcf

Changes deployed to amara.org April 15, 2015

  • 1866: Editor: Don’t allow saving if timestamps are invalid
  • 1873: Add some more options per subtitle line in the editor
  • 2153: Editor shortcuts
  • 2157: Increase required version of coverage to fix warnings
  • 123: generalize editor-nonces / open-editor

Changes deployed to amara.org 21-March -> April 8, 2015

  • 1425: For YouTube videos, indicate whether they sync subtitles to YouTube
  • 1481: Editor: do not allow SHIFT+SPACE play and pause the video
  • 1950: Do not show line breaks in the transcript viewer
  • 1953: Upgrade to Django 1.4.20
  • 2047: Billing record not created for subs uploaded via the editor
  • 2112: Amara player displays subtitles with a delay
  • 2117: Display on diffing page how subtitle has changed – text, time, or both
  • 2126: Allow method to create a new user with a unique username
  • 2128: Track users created by other users via the API
  • 2146: Languages section in user profile is shown empty when it has data
  • 120: Duration and original lang from Pro Request not always stored on the video

April 07, 2015

by Amara - by pcfben at April 07, 2015 07:17 PM

pcfben

The new API is here!  Last week we deployed the last bits of new API code for the general API.  Partner-specific stuff still needs to be implemented, but now we’re going officially deprecate the old API and I’d like to take this opportunity to politely nudge all API client to move over to using the new code.  Here’s the details:

  • Starting today the old API is officially deprecated
  • All API clients are encouraged to move to the new API.
  • 3 weeks from now (4/28) the old API urls will start redirecting to the new API urls.  The actual date might be a couple days later, but it won’t be before 4/28.
  • The client code changes should just be changing URLs, but please read my last blog post for details: http://about.amara.org/2015/03/25/api-refactor-finishing-up/
  • The URLs are switching from
    https://amara.org/api2/partners/[path]

    to

    https://amara.org/api/[path]

 


March 25, 2015

by Amara - by pcfben at March 25, 2015 04:49 PM

pcfben

I just pushed the last bits of code to re-implement the API endpoints.  This includes the team application, message, and activity endpoints.  So this means that all of the general API has now been re-implemented with new code (finally).  It’s pretty laughable in hindsight that I thought 2-4 weeks was a reasonable amount of time for this, given that it actually took around 9.  But I think we are finally in a position to start the transition in the somewhat near future.

The timeline is probably going to be testing and reviewing the documentation this week.  Then we will start transitioning next week.  “Start transitioning” means that we simply will say that the old API is deprecated and give API clients a few weeks to migrate to using the new URLs.  Hopefully for all clients, this simply will mean switching the URLs, since the APIs are almost exactly the same.  However, clients should definitely test to make sure that we didn’t accidentally change functionality for them.

Speaking of keeping the same functionality, when re-implemented the API I tried to change as little as possible, but some things did end up changing.  The main reason for this was either the documentation was unclear about what the intended functionality was, or I thought that a certain piece of functionality was simply a very bad idea.  These are the main areas of change that I know about:

  • Tasks: it was pretty unclear to me how the interface for PUT/POST was intended to work.  I tried to keep it working more-or-less the same, but some of the code in the old API seemed to be bugs to me so I didn’t translate them over.
  • Team delete: I removed the ability to do a DELETE request on teams.  This seems like something that should never really happen in practice.  If you are depending on this functionality, please send me an email and we can make things work for your use-case.
  • Blank/null values: There were several places in the code where blank strings, null values, the string “null”, and missing values were used interchangeably.  I tried to follow the conventions that the old API used as much as possible, but I can’t say that I got it 100% correct.  Please email me if it’s not working for one of your use cases.

March 23, 2015

by Amara - by janetpcf at March 23, 2015 09:42 AM

janetpcf

Changed deployed to amara.org 2015-03-20

129: Add DOIT team to community page
1783: notes are only preserving the first line break
2043: Show endorsements/send backs in the editor notes
2044: enable communication between collaborators in the editor
2047: Billing record not created for subs uploaded via the editor
2064: Switch to OpenID Connect for google
2089: amara editor doesn’t use the primary url
2114: Add way to bulk-sync youtube subtitles for users


March 17, 2015

by Amara - by pcfben at March 17, 2015 06:31 PM

pcfben

I skipped last weeks API update, but there has been lots of updates in that time.  I implemented basically all of the team-related parts of the API (Teams, projects, team members, tasks, etc.) Right now there’s still a bit to be tested, but I think we should be able to deploy it soon.

Most of the things was pretty simple, with the main exception being the tasks API.  Does anyone actively use the create/update parts of this API?  I notice that it was never really properly documented and had more than a few quirks.  I tried to keep the main functionality intact, but I can’t guarantee that some things won’t change.  If you use the create/update functionality I would definitely recommend checking your code once we deploy.

Once that code is deployed, there’s not much left to do.  The last remaining endpoints are:

  • video activity
  • team applications
  • user messages
  • partner-specific endpoints

I’m really hoping to wrap up the first three next week, and maybe even deploy it.  I know it’s taken longer than expected, but I think things are finally getting close to having a functional new API that can be fully tested against.


March 11, 2015

by Amara - by janetpcf at March 11, 2015 03:28 PM

tutorial

There are a bunch of updates that have been pushed to Amara in the last few weeks.  So here’s a quick catch up on the release notes.

First off – we’ve added some additional help to introduce new users to the editor.  This will display for brand-new user, but if you want to see it yourself, you can always find it via the Tools > Show Tutorial menu.

tutorial

Here’s the list of tickets recently deployed to Amara.

1852: Chars/sec alert starts at 21.1
1883: Add some more help for new users of the Editor
1944: redesign login page to use newer page layout
1968: Place complete, working embed code into Embed Video dialog
2017: embedder loading gif 404s on site
2022: extra characters in lang list
2028: Link to existing team if duplicate
2029: Do not log task send back actions as approvals
2046: keep notification logs longer and make them searchable
2051: Malformed HTML in email_base
1216: Add “Project” column in billing reports
2058: TED authentication broken on amara.org
2062: Detect whitespace-only search strings
2064: Switch to OpenID Connect for google
2067: Reviewers can approve tasks by re-opening the editor
2071: New API Video URL resource
2073: Make quick way to remove staff/superuser permissions from the django admin
2076: 404 looking up accounts via api that contain a ‘.’ in the username
2077: Add Hakha Chin language
2081: TypeError: user_can_view_private_subtitles() takes exactly 3 arguments (2 given)
2086: Upgrade Angular to 1.2.9
2095: Update dmca email address
944: Compare Revisions feature broken on paginated revision lists


March 10, 2015

by Amara - by amarasubs at March 10, 2015 01:18 PM

Screen shot of http://uy.emedemujer.com/actualidad/entretenimiento/el-comercial-del-super-bowl-del-que-todas-debemos-hablar/

If you haven’t seen this PSA that focuses on violence against women, which aired during the superbowl, it’s worth watching.

Eme de Mujer, a website of the largest Uruguayan daily newspaper El País, shared the PSA (with Spanish subtitles) in this recent post.

Screen shot of http://uy.emedemujer.com/actualidad/entretenimiento/el-comercial-del-super-bowl-del-que-todas-debemos-hablar/At Amara, it always excites us to see videos, such as this, shared across cultural and/or in accessible contexts. We’ll continue to keep our eyes peeled and share anything that looks intriguing or neat.

What are Subtitles in the Wild? We’ve been keeping an eye on popular videos with posted on the web with using the Amara embedder – when we see something interesting or exciting, we’ll share it.

An Important Note: Amara blog authors aren’t fluent in every language. If you see any factual errors, cultural faux pas, or have notes or other blog-related ideas to share, please let us know in the comments or at blogs@amara.org We love conversation!

 


March 04, 2015

by Amara - by pcfben at March 04, 2015 09:28 PM

pcfben

I feel like it’s been 2-3 weeks of me saying “we have lots of new API code for you to test, just wait for us to deploy it in the next few days”.  Well, the code is finally deployed.  If you have an API client, I would definitely recommend testing it against the new stuff.

Some of the highlights:

For more details, check out our RTD page: http://amara.readthedocs.org/en/latest/new-api.html

I didn’t implement a lot of new things last week, mostly just fixed bugs in order to deploy this code.  I’m really eager to hear the results of API client testing against these endpoints.

Also on the way is the Videos URL resource.  It’s currently deployed to staging, so it should make it’s way to production over the next few days.

The main things that still need to be implemented are:

  • Team-related endpoints (team members, tasks, projects)
  • The Video Activity resource
  • Partner-specific API endpoints

February 26, 2015

by Amara - by amarasubs at February 26, 2015 03:28 PM

amarasubs

If you’re in NYC tomorrow afternoon, a member of the Amara team will be joining a discussion panel at 3:30 pm, at the NYU event Translation-Machination.

This event explores the changing circumstances of linguistic exchange and considers the implications of translation as a language technology from a media theoretical perspective.

It’s a free event and will no doubt spur some interesting conversation!

Event Time: February 27 1:00pm – 5:00pm EST
Event Location: 239 Greene Street, NY NY
Registration: (free) Bottom of this page.


February 25, 2015

by Amara - by pcfben at February 25, 2015 02:41 PM

pcfben

There’s a ton of new API code that’s pretty much ready, but unfortunately it’s not quite live yet.  We just need to do a few more tests and then we will push it (hopefully like today or tomorrow).

The last endpoint I implemented was the users endpoint.  It went pretty smoothly.  The one notable thing was that I made the first non-backwards API change, which was to remove the user list as an API endpoint.  I couldn’t think of a reasonable use for browsing all the amara users, but please tell me if there is one.

The other notable change was in the browser endpoint view.  I added a checkbox for all optional fields when doing a POST/PUT.  By default it’s checked, but you can uncheck it to not send that field.

One thing that I always found very strange about APIv2 was how it treated several values: the absence of a field, the value being the empty string, the value being null, and the value the string “null”.  In some endpoints it would treat those things as being the same and others would treat them as distinct.  If you rely on that behavior, please test it out.

Ben


February 20, 2015

by Amara - by amarasubs at February 20, 2015 03:00 PM

amarasubs

Most orgs did 2014 wrap ups in the first week of January, but that gets a little overwhelming. We’re doing ours fashionably late instead – please enjoy!

Accessibility volunteers, making a difference for others

In 2014, we learned about reddit.com/r/CaptionPlease, an amazing community of accessibility-minded folks who caption short videos for anyone who requests them. They are a friendly community, and are always looking for volunteers – visit the link above for info on getting involved and/or requesting captions.

@SubtitleYouTube has single handedly (double handedly?) captioned a LOT of videos during the year. It’s an inspiring effort, @SubtitleYouTube!

And of course Amara is home to some really neat accessibility groups as well, including the Captions Requested team as well as the Music Captioning team. Definitely worth a look.

Are there other volunteer accessibility communities we should point to? Please let us know!

Amara platform development in 2014

2014 was a HUGE year for Amara development! Here are a few highlights: Amara Editor and Embedder both went gold, the website speed and performance massively improved, we did a full integration with Vimeo. The improvements will continue in 2015!

Translation highlights from 2014

Volunteers rallied around Aaron Schwartz’s story, translating the feature film into over 12 languages and helping spread this imporant story worldwide.

Attitude Live, an amazing nonprofit organization, produces compelling stories about people living with disabilities. Their volunteer community translated an inspiring video about a woman named Maia Amai into 20 languages. The video tell’s Maia’s story, where she overcomes significant adversity to join the New Zealand wheelchair rugby team.

Another group of translators made Scientific American’s what happens when you die video available in over 24 languages (which has since gone very viral in Hungary!). Overall, we saw a LOT of fun and inspiring videos translated into all kinds of languages.

And every year we give a big shout out to the TED Open Translation Project, which continues to grow and evolve at an astonishing rate.

Do you have any inspiring translation stories we should be sharing? Please let us know!

Design in 2014: Websites, blog, and new tutorial video

We launched two beautiful new website designs: Amara.org and Amara’s Professional Services Site, in addition to a cute and informative Meet Amara video. The Amara Blog also got a facelift and we’ve been posting there more regularly.

To sum it all up, we’re pumped about 2015! If you’ve been thinking about video accessibility or translation, please drop us a line (just reply to this email).

Best,
The Amara Team

Corrections: We mistook @SubtitleYoutube’s account name (though the link was correct).


February 18, 2015

by Amara - by pcfben at February 18, 2015 09:41 PM

pcfben

This week I worked on one of the more complex API endpoints: the subtitles resource.  The reason for the complexity is the atypical output format.  Normally API endpoints return an object that’s encoded into JSON (or XML, YAML, or something similar).  The subtitles resource follows this pattern, but it also allows users to get the subtitles as straight DFXP, SRT, Web VTT, or any other format that we support.

This leads to a lot of weird corner cases, like what if the user requests DFXP, but there’s an error with the request.  There’s no way to encode that error as DFXP, so what to do?  In the new code I just used JSON as a fallback.  I think the old code did the same, but I’m not really sure.

Anyways, that endpoint is complete and live on production right now.  I’ve said this pretty much every week, but again if you write API code I urge you to check it out — especially in a browser.  One of the big wins from the API change is browsable API endpoints, and I it’s especially nice to use with the subtitles resource.  Try sending actions along with the subtitles to simulate a user hitting the publish/save draft/approve/send back buttons in the editor.  You can get to the subtitles API endpoints by starting with any video (https://amara.org/api/videos/<video-id&gt;).  Then following the links to to get to the subtitles.

Oh yeah, the API documentation should be building again.  There was an error from a change I made last week, but now it’s up-to-date again.  You can check it out at http://amara.readthedocs.org/en/api-refactor/new-api.html


February 16, 2015

by Amara - by amarasubs at February 16, 2015 07:28 PM

Screenshot of japanese site dailynewsagency.com with Kon article

Satoshi Kon, acclaimed director, animator, screenplay writer, and  manga artist, made an impact on filmmakers around the world. In this video, YouTube channel Every Frame a Painting, dissects some of the unique techniques and ideas that Kon pioneered. The video also reviews specific points of influence Kon had in other filmmakers’ films.

Daily News Agency, a Japanese aggregator of news, tech, food, and media, featured the video (with Japanese subtitles) in this recent post.

Screenshot of japanese site dailynewsagency.com with Kon articleAt Amara, it always excites us to see videos, such as this, shared across cultural contexts. We’ll continue to keep our eyes peeled and share anything that looks intriguing or neat.

What are Subtitles in the Wild?  We’ve been keeping an eye on popular videos with posted on the web with using the Amara embedder – when we see something interesting or exciting, we’ll share it.

An Important Note: Amara blog authors aren’t fluent in every language. If you see any factual errors, cultural faux pas, or have notes or other blog-related ideas to share, please let us know in the comments or at blogs@amara.org We love conversation!

 


February 10, 2015

by Amara - by pcfben at February 10, 2015 07:18 PM

pcfben

Another week has rolled along, so it’s time to talk about the API update progress again.

This week I implemented the video language endpoint. It went a lot faster than the video endpoint since it was much simpler. In general, the coding is getting faster since the endpoints are getting simpler and also I’m getting more used to django rest factory. Combined with the fact that the other major project I’ve been working on is pretty much done, I expect things to really pick up starting this week.

Speaking of faster, I also did some work optimizing the various endpoints and hopefully made some big improvements. At least for the videos and video language endpoints, the number of DB queries has dropped substantially and I think this should make the API respond much quicker. Of course this needs to be tested in the wild, so if anyone does want to do a test with their workload I would be very interested to know the results.

Lastly, I started open up some tickets on our github tracker for future API changes.  The plan is still to avoid changes to the current interface for the refactor, so those tickets will not be getting implemented any time soon.  Still, if anyone has thoughts or if a change will be difficult to work around in your client code, please add a comment.

The changes have been merged to staging and are very close to being deployed to production. I’m expecting it to happen tomorrow.


DOIT Able Player

The University of Washington’s DOIT program (Disabilities, Opportunities, Internetworking, and Technology) has a beautiful wealth of resources, videos, and programs aimed to help students, employers, and educators promote inclusion and success for people with disabilities.

The recently redesigned DOIT website includes resources for people with disabilities, such as scholarship opportunities, reading materials, and community directories. It also functions as a place for sharing and disseminating knowledge about how to make work, school, and other venues more inclusive – so anyone interested in accessibility can access best practices tailored to all kinds of situations. DOIT also hosts a video library, packed full of resources; this library includes a very robust (accessible) video player built in cooperation with a consortium of universities.

DOIT Able Player
We’re also proud to share news of the recently launched DOIT translation community on Amara, where volunteers can help translate their videos and share best practices for inclusion across the globe. DOIT has already become a hit in Japan, and hopes to act as a model for how accessibility can used to maximize the potential in everyone.

If you’re interested in making accessibility more global, we urge you to check out DOIT’s video translation effort: DOIT Amara team


February 09, 2015

by Amara - by amarasubs at February 09, 2015 11:25 PM

Screenshot of Emma Watson video embedded in Womany.net

Late last year, at the United Nations, Emma Watson gave an impassioned speech about the launch of HeForShe, a project she’s spearheading along with UN Women. HeForShe calls for everyone to stand behind the concept of gender equality as a human rights issue.

Womany.net recently featured the Watson speech in a blog post and the video has been getting lots of views in Traditional Chinese. The site appears to be Chinese (possibly Taiwanese?) and has some focus on women’s issues.

Screenshot of Emma Watson video embedded in Womany.net

At Amara, it always excites us to see videos, such as this, shared across cultural contexts. We’ll continue to keep our eyes peeled and share anything that looks intriguing or neat.

What are Subtitles in the Wild?  We’ve been keeping an eye on popular videos with posted on the web with using the Amara embedder – when we see something interesting or exciting, we’ll share it.

An Important Note: Amara blog authors aren’t fluent in every language. If you see any factual errors, cultural faux pas, or have notes or other blog-related ideas to share, please let us know in the comments or at blogs@amara.org We love conversation!