Thank you for taking the time to share your feedback on the new features in the Amara subtitle editor, your voice is so important to help us find the best solutions!
Based on our users’ feedback, our engineering team has provided the temporary option to continue to use the Legacy Syncing behavior while we continue to improve.
To use the Legacy Syncing behavior option:
With the Amara Editor open and the project in the REVIEW STAGE:
You can update your preference on any project you have worked on that is in the Review stage.
Click "Using up/down to adjust timings" link on the left to open the dialog box.
Then click the “Use Legacy Syncing Behavior” button in the lower left.
This will set the Legacy Syncing Behavior as your default setting so that any new projects you begin will have this setting.
You can revert to the New Syncing behavior again by opening any video project in Review
-> Use Up/Down to adjust timings
-> Use New Syncing Behavior
The setting you select will remain the default for your editor view until you change it.
Thank you for being a part of our amazing community!
November 2019 Update
We are happy to share that the new features will be merging into the default Amara Editor next week. Thank you for all your feedback and great suggestions to help make creating captions and translations on Amara even more intuitive and efficient than ever! Keep sharing any ideas here or send them to us directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.
You may have noticed the new "Beta Editor" button on the Amara platform. That's because we are officially retiring our Legacy subtitle editor, and replacing it with some new features we hope will help you subtitle easier! We listened to feedback from our users and built some improvements into a beta version of the new editor, which will soon be incorporated into the main platform. We’ll incorporate all the new beta features into the editor soon.
Until then, you can switch to the beta editor for any of your subtitling work by clicking the “Beta Editor” button in the upper right of the editor screen, and switch back using the “Default Editor” button in the same spot.
Important: Please be sure to save your work each time before switching.
Let’s take a look at some of our new Beta Editor features!
The workflow steps in the upper right of the editor are now text links, which you can use to switch between typing, syncing, or reviewing your subtitles.
If a subtitle does not comply with the line and character limits listed in the info tray, the subtitle handles are highlighted in orange in the timeline. This warning can help you catch mistakes while you are syncing your subtitles.
The video player always shows synced subtitles at the current time in the video.
If you click an unsynced subtitle to start an edit, you will see the subtitle show up on the video player while you are editing. This gives you an extra point of reference within the context of the video.
The beta editor has larger subtitle endpoint “handles” that can be selected one at a time or together. With these handles, you can move two adjacent subtitle endpoints at the same time. If you hover over or select a subtitle handle, the handle will highlight light blue.
Note: To select two subtitle endpoints at the same time, the endpoints have to be exactly next to each other.
You can also nudge subtitle beginning and end points by selecting a handle and using your left and right arrow keys to adjust by small increments. We’ve also removed the “start now” and “end now” indicators that we used to show when syncing subtitles.
Help us continue to improve the new features by sharing your thoughts on this forum or emailing us at email@example.com.
Thank you, Diego. Your indications are really precious, and describe what I too have experienced way better than I could have done.
My rougher solution so far has been to only roughly sync subtitles in the syncing stage, and do the adjustments in the reviewing stage. That's how we are meant to use Amara according to tutorials, but I preferred to precisely sync immediately, especially for long videos. Your descriptions should be most useful for Amara's tech staff.
Then there is the issue of the up and down keys affecting the previous subtitle, instead of the current subtitle. This is the new GUI trying to be smart and choosing the "closer" subtitle. It happens when your current subtitle has a long time interval, and its "end" point is farther than the previous subtitle's endpoint. The way to fix it is to shorten the current subtitle time interval, dragging its "end" handle backwards. After that the GUI goes to back to work as expected.
Another thing, ESC works only if your cursor is in the text in the bottom section.
Ok, after practice I found out how the new subtitle editor during sync has changed. It is not bugs, it is unexpected behaviour.
1) You can change intervals using the mouse only of subtitles that have both a beginning and an end. What you cannot do is this: type the down arrow button to start a subtitle, then decide that the subtitle should start earlier and drag it backwards, because you will not be able to pick up the subtitle. You can add an end to the subtitle with the up button, and then you will be able to drag it. Or use Ctrl+z to undo the last action and start the subtitle earlier.
2) When editing the text while syncing, the editor changes "mode" and after you finish editing you are not able to drag subtitles with the mouse. You have to type "Esc" first, and then you go back to the mode where you can drag subtitles and use the down/up buttons.
I'd say that the problem is consistent. It works ok if you do not make mistakes, However, during sync it does not like if I stop and go back and try to change the interval of the previous subtitle, which I would like to do when I press the down or up arrow key too early or too late. Or if I split a subtitle, and go back to the previous one to arrange it. In these cases, the up/down arrow keys often stop working or do not affect the subtitle I am working with and I have selected, but some other one. Expecially confusing is when subtitle end up overlapping each other.
I would say that for me this update is a downgrade. This issue happens all the time and makes subtitling videos three or four times slower. It is not related to browsers or Operating systems, as it happens on Chrome and Firefox, MacOs, Windows or Linux. From what I understand it is a built-in behaviour of this new editor which is trying to be too smart, so I don't know, I might be used to the old one and I just do not get it how it is supposed to work now. Never had that issue with the previous editor.
Thank you for the confirmation, Diego. Hopefully other people who have experienced this issue will contribute to this thread too: the more we are, the greater the likelihood that this is more than just an accidental glitch. Two users is already a good indication, though.
I do encounter that issue from time and time and I either exit and resume or delete and recreate the current subtitle. It is still usable, but it is a bug which has been introduced in the last update - never had that before.
Hi again, Diego
I tried some more subtitling and indeed, at one point, I encountered the issue you describe (though not always)
To get rid of it, I saved and exited, then resumed subtitling and the issue was gone. Not a very rigorous approach, granted, but it works. However, if you repeatedly encounter this issue, please confirm in this thread.
Thank you for your accurate report, Diego. I'll try to reproduce it. May I ask which browser you were using?
The problem has appeared lately. If during sync timing you stop using the buttons to start and end subtitles, to drag manually the bars of a subtitle you timed incorrectly, when you go back to playing the video the end and start subtitle buttons seem to be stuck remembering the previous subtitle, and do to not end the current subtitle, but the previous one. If you use the start button to move on to the next subtitle, no luck, it will move the start pointer of the current subtitle. So you are stack drugging the start and end bars of all following subtitles manually until after a while the program decides to work correctly again - for a while.
This is something that has started happening since the last update with the "colored" handles and it is extremely annoying.
The new editor is hectic and slow. I don't like it at all. Very "sticky and draggy" Please revert to the Legacy editor. The down and up buttons only work on >half of the caption. This is very inconvenient.
This is cool! I can't wait using it!
Thank you, Kenzie!
Re the issues described in the screenshot and in your following post: I don't experience them because I tend to stop playing before using arrows (yeah, I know, that's not what we are meant to do, but I am very clumsy so that's how I can use Amara without going bonkers). but my guess is that many people also stop playing the video when they are fine-tuning the syncing (review - approve), because it's difficult to really finetune in flow.
Hopefully some more orthodox users will reply too.
We're going to add back the down/up arrows for synced subtitles. Aside from warning users to stop the video before using down/up arrows for already-synced subtitles, we have one idea about how to avoid the case shown in the screenshot, anyone see any issues with this?
Some extra behavior for down and up arrows in the review stage:
if the cursor is closer to the next subtitle than the beginning of the current subtitle, DOWN will sync the start time of the upcoming subtitle.
If the cursor is closer to the end time of the previous subtitle than the end time of current subtitle, UP will sync the end time of the previous subtitle.
I am neutral about the page scrolling, but thank you for the video illustrating the arrow syncing issue.
Now using arrows to sync subtitles as the video is playing is mainly meant for first syncing, "on the fly". But when reviewing already synced subtitles, if you need to modify the time-codes for one, it is safer to search for the exact point where you want the start or end time code, stop the video and only then use the relevant time-coding arrow.
So the up and down arrows are extremely useful for the first syncing on the fly. Disabling them from the reviewing stage onward? Not sure it would be feasible and anyway, some people with extremely good reflexes might wish to do resyncing on the fly while reviewing, notwithstanding the risk of messups described in the video (should they sneeze or if the arrow command gets sluggish). So please keep the arrow commands, and maybe explain in the tut about the risk of using them for reviewing while the video is playing.
This being said, if there were a majority in favor of disabling these arrows, there are workarounds: they weren't working on my Mac with the old legacy editor, so I'd team with someone who could use them: I would do the transcript, then my team mate would do the syncing and we'd both do the reviewing. Hardly feasible with videos in teams with strict one person / one task workflows, though.
We've got some conflicting feedback coming in about the up and down arrows for adjusting synced subtitles - please weigh in below to help us figure out what the best behavior is!
- please check out the attached screencast that shows a frequently reported issue with the non-beta behavior: once subtitles are synced, the down arrow moves the start point of the current subtitle, rather than setting the start point of the upcoming subtitle. It seems to confuse a lot of beginners, but curious what your thoughts are as superusers - this is the main reason we tried to "replace" the down and up arrows with the alt+s shortcut.
- if we just put the down-up arrows back, it wouldn't solve that confusion, although maybe it's not as big of a deal now that we have the undo function (ctrl+z)?
- one option is, we could add back a "punch in/out" shortcut that's different, to avoid confusion: maybe left/right arrows, or the letters "i" and "o"?
Other thoughts also welcome, of course :)