A very nice transcription program available for free download from UCSB Linguistics (go to this Download page for best results). Described as a "glorified digital tape deck", it allows the user to walk through sound 'steps', or recorded increments, of a few seconds each, which can be played in an overlapping series. Voicewalker also has Play, Stop, Step Forward, Step Back, and Repeat Current Step features, among others, to help you control what you are hearing. The program does not itself record, and requires you to have already converted your recordings to digitalized sound files (.WAV format) [the Digital Media Lab at UVa can help with this process, or you can investigate software such as Cool Edit (see below).] One-minute chunks of sound can be handled by the Sound Recorder feature of Windows, from a microphone or CD.

The producers of Voicewalker are currently working on Soundwriter, which combines the features of Voicewalker with the capacity to align sound files with written transcription. It is currently available for free download but at this point has no help manual.
(Patti Epps)