Posted updated on 16 June 2022
© BrenDeBev (all publication rights reserved)
Follow this step-by-step guide to help ensure worry-free Connection Magic sessions using Eclipse Version 10.
Before the Big Day:
1. Set up a shared folder with your preferred cloud service (Dropbox, Sync, Box, et cetera) between reporter and editor(s).
Export your user settings into a .set file (Alt+U>>Export Settings).
Make a copy of your main dictionary.
Make a copy of any job dictionary(ies) you will be using for this job.
Make a copy of any block files you will be using for this job.
Place all of the above items in the shared folder you have created.
2. Set your audio recording compression settings (Alt+U>>Realtime>>Audio Recording>>Compression) to Opus.
3. Make sure your Division Interval setting is at 0 (Alt+U>>Realtime>>Division Interval).
4. We strongly recommend that you disable or turn off any automatic backup service, cloud service, automatic syncing service, and/or antivirus/malware programs you may have running on your computer. Carbonite is particularly guilty of interfering with CM; even when turned off it still runs checks in the background on a regular basis. In some extreme cases, the complete removal of Carbonite may be necessary in order to use CM. We realize and understand that many reading this are reluctant to turn off their antivirus/malware protection while online, but so long as you are not using your browser or email client while you are engaged in a CM session, it is extremely unlikely that you will be exposed to any virus or malware threat.
If possible, go to the location from which you will be initiating the CM session in order to conduct a test session. If it’s not possible to access the location, run a test session from your home or other location with good Internet access.
6. To initiate a CM session, open Eclipse and start a realtime file. While in that file, select Tools>>Connection Magic>>Share current document. Make sure you check the “publicly visible” box. Choose a room and type in a password. Then click Okay. You are now sharing your document and ready to begin a CM session with your editor(s).
Once your editor(s) have joined the CM session, turn on CNN or some other audio source and begin “reporting” it. The editor(s) should hear audio and see the text populate live. If there is no audio, double-check your compression settings, double-check that you have turned off all automatic backups and antivirus software. Have your editor(s) double-check that an audio file is actually being received from you by having her check her hard drive to see if there is a matching .opus file on her computer.
If none of these resolve the problem, it’s time to call support, as there are a variety of things which could be causing the issue.
7. Practice handing off the file to one of your editors for the conclusion of the editing process after the proceedings have ended. After a successful handoff, practice placing both the .ecl and the .opus file in your shared cloud folder. If you are working remotely and can leave Eclipse open and running while your editor(s) finish up the file, this is preferred as it means that all dictionary entries will remain in the same file for use on successive days in the same case.
8. Establish a method of instant contact between you and your editor(s). Set up a Google Hangout (our preferred method), open an IM chat on FB, or arrange for texting on your phone. It’s very important that both you and your editor(s) have a way to reach each other immediately if there are problems or urgent questions that crop up during the proceedings.
On the Big Day:
1. Try to arrive and set up at least 30 minutes before the scheduled start time.
2. Go online from the location where you will be working and run a speed test at speedtest.net. If you have less than 5 Mbps upload speed, you probably will not be able to sustain a CM session and you should explore other alternatives for working on your transcript.
3. Cellular internet has come a very long way in the last decade. It is much more reliable and consistent than in years past; however, it is still less reliable than a hardwired ethernet or mifi connection. We recommend using a cellular hotspot only as a choice of last resort, and it is never a good idea to use a phone as a hotspot (only use dedicated hotspot devices).
4. If you have the opportunity to plug directly into the Internet signal at your location (Ethernet cable directly from your computer to their modem/router), do so. You will have a far more stable Internet connection that way.
5. Initiate the CM session with your editor(s). Verify that everything is visible/audible.
6. Once everything is up and running, remember this: Reporter, DO NOT go backwards in the file. Do not edit. Do not global. Go forward only. You are paying your editor(s) a premium to work in this file with you in real time. If you back up to fix something, you run the risk of destroying any edits already made. However, it is perfectly acceptable to move around in a file to view it for readback purposes or to double-check that edits are being made to known trouble spots. Try to keep this mantra in your head: LOOK but DON’T touch.
At the Conclusion of the Proceedings:
1. Talk to your editor(s) when you are ready to hand off the file to one of them (if you are working in person or cannot leave the file open until your editor(s) are finished working in the file). Once you have verified that your chosen recipient is now hosting the file, you may exit out of the file. Once the file is completed, your editor(s) will then be able to return the finished file to you via your shared cloud folder or other method you have prearranged.
2. Before you head home from an in-person location, it’s a good idea to place a copy of all .ecl and .opus files in your shared cloud folder. This way, if your editor(s) runs into any problems before you reach home, she can retrieve those files and use them even if you are not available at that point in time.
And that’s it!
Perfect Partners Transcript Brigade members are available to work with you to walk you through setting up and practicing using Connection Magic. If you are booking with us for your first Connection Magic job, we will be happy to provide this service free of charge prior to the commencement of the actual job. If you would simply like to practice with Connection Magic and run a test session with one of our team members, we offer a standalone training service with pricing starting at $25 per 15-minute interval of session time.
Connection Magic is an awesome way to produce transcripts in the most timely and efficient manner imaginable. When you work with the Perfect Partners Transcript Brigade, you are working with some of the most experienced users of Connection Magic available today. Individually and collectively, our team members have participated in thousands of CM sessions since Connection Magic’s introduction. Connect with us and watch the Magic happen!