DNA sequence input by voice

John Woods eanv20 at castle.ed.ac.uk
Tue Jan 25 09:37:30 EST 1994

>>Now that microphones in computers have become commonplace, has anyone 
>>developed a sequence input program that takes advantage of them?
>>(Perhaps something for the Mac 840AV?)

>>I think that a lot of people would vastly prefer reading a DNA sequence 
>>into a file by voice than by any of the various clumsy and/or slow 
>>and/or expensive devices currently in use.

Why?  I wouldn't!  All the DNA sequences I've seen are already in a
much easier form.  Neglecting those that are already digital, from
GenBank et al, all the rest are written down.  Just scan them in.
Plenty of scanners have good enough Optical Character Recognition to
get the A/C/T/G distinction, and I would guess are faster than
dictation for any sequence exceeding 100 or so bases (below that, you
might as well just type it in).  Reassigning a row of four keys in your
numeric keypad to ATC&G might help.  And the only other form I can
imagine useful sequence information in is as a gel, and plenty of gel
readers are now available.  That's got to be better than the somewhat
indirect route of reading out --- human readers are apt to lose their
place or make mistakes without even noticing it.

... John  Woods

Forsan et haec olim meminisse iuvabit (Virgil)
[approx] Tr: The time may come when we will look back on these days and laugh

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