Everything You Wanted to Know About CART Writing - Part
By Cheryl Heppner
Editor: The folks at NVRC recently hosted (along with the local HLAA
and ALDA chapters) a panel of CART experts to provide the latest
information on this crucial technology. Cheryl did her usual outstanding
job of writing it up and sharing it with interested folks. Here's her
report. You are welcome to share this information, but please be sure to
This is part one of eleven parts.
We have remote CART today, being provided by Mike Cano. Welcome, it's
great to have you here. Debbie Jones and I will have a series of questions
for our panel, which were provided to the panelists in advance. After
those questions, we'll take a break, and then in the second half of the
program you get to ask whatever questions you would like. In the back of
the room are note cards and pencils. If think of something you want to
ask, you can take a notecard and pencil and write it down so that you
Because I am an emergency preparedness person, I want to tell you that
if there is an emergency, walk, don't run, to the nearest exit. Our
nearest exit is in the back of the room. If for some reason that's
blocked, you can go out this door (indicating) and all the way to the
other end, or you can go out the other way and there is an exit the other
way as well (indicating). Just go calmly. I was in a meeting of
firefighters yesterday, and one said, "Well, we can always break the
windows." And somebody said, "Why would you want to break the windows?" He
said, "We're firefighters, we like breaking windows. Okay?"
NVRC is happy to have the Hearing Loss Association of Northern Virginia
and Association of Late-Deafened Adults, Potomac Chapter, involved as
Before we go on, I just want to introduce you to the other staff that
are here today who have little name tags on. They are Melody, Bonnie, and
Gay. Now let me introduce the panelists: Christopher Gaskill, Karen
McConnell. We thank you all for spending your Saturday morning to explain
CART for us. Debbie gets the first question.
Does your agency provide CART for all or some of the following
situations: Meetings, school, presentations, courtroom, medical, legal,
performing arts, employment, and anything else? Also, do you do remote
CART as well as live CART? And what other services does your agency
I work at Alderson Court Reporting. I am the federal hearings
coordinator. Alderson has been around since 1938. We're primarily a court
reporting company. We do depositions for corporate law firms. We do public
meetings and hearings for the United States Senate, the Supreme Court, and
organizations such as those, federal agencies and stuff.
CART is kind of a niche of the market that we cover. We cover a few
CART jobs a week. It's not the primary portion of what Alderson does.
We've been trying to increase that. Alderson typically provides CART
reporting for anyone who calls in requesting it. We have done almost all
of these situations, with the exception of performing arts, within the
past two years that I've been involved with CART at Alderson. We primarily
provide live CART. I think we've only done remote CART once in the past
couple of years. We also provide captioning for live events such as Senate
hearings and things of that nature.
Metro Reporting has done CART in pretty much all of these settings.
We've done remote CART. We do staff meetings and also do legal such as
writing CART for a deaf plaintiff. We do performing arts, classes, lots of
different meetings, different organizations.
I have been doing CART probably since the early '90s. I started court
reporting in 1973 and I started my own business in 1994. In the '80s, we
used to do a thing called instant edit, kind of a prototype where the text
would come up on the screen and we had actually somebody sitting there
editing our text. That was my first introduction to realtime.
Our company first did CART in the school setting, and then by word of
mouth we've eventually evolved into doing every kind of CART imaginable.
One thing I am very proud of is that I won an award from NVRC in 2006. I
am very happy that I work with the HLAA group. We do a lot of pro bono
CART work. And we also do pro bono in depositions. We still do
depositions, but a big part of our company is now providing CART and
remote CART and anything associated with that.
I am the director of CART and captioning for Visual Language
Interpreters, a new role for me since January second of this year. We
presently provide these services in all of the listed areas, the meetings,
the school, the resentations. The two areas I personally am not aware that
we provide services at this point are in the courtroom or legal setting,
and the medical setting. We just have not had a request yet for that. We
do the performing arts and in the employment arena, staff meetings, any
sort of meetings where someone needs access in connection with their
Visual Language Interpreters was begun in 1999 as a sign language
interpreting provider. Over the years as part of the provision of those
services, they have gotten increasing requests for CART and captioning.
That was the genesis of establishing the division and of my hiring. In the
performing arts arena we have provided CART on a LED display. We provide
remote CART through a proprietary platform. What you are seeing Mike write
on this morning is one form of platform where remote CART is available.
Ours is slightly different, but very similar in terms of appearance.
We also provide the on-site service both on a one-on-one basis, and as
well to larger groups. We have the capability to provide captioning. CART
is an acronym which stands for Communication Access Realtime Translation.
And to me that means a full screen of text that you are seeing. True
captioning is the integration of the text with the video image. Think of
your news broadcast and the captioning that you are used to seeing on TV
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