Toolbox to Elan

In the spirit of solving small frustrations I offer my weekend experience of getting Toolbox files into Elan. I have over a hundred texts in Nafsan, most of which are time-aligned and interlinearised. I am working with Stefan Schnell on adding GRAID annotation to some of these texts and the preferred way of doing this is in Elan, with the GRAID annotation at the morphemic-level. I tried importing Toolbox files using the Elan ‘Import’ menu, and had listed all field markers in Toolbox, together with their internal dependencies (which should then map to Elan’s relationship between tiers). These settings are stored in an external file. Unfortunately, the import failed several times, despite changing the settings slightly after each attempt. I sent the file to Han Sloetjes (the developer of Elan at the MPI) who promptly sent it back, corrected. For those who have read this far and who are likely to be trying this too, the key was in not including the ELANBegin and ELANEnd fields (which store timecodes) in the marker hierarchy. Apparently these two fields are not part of the entry for import purposes, but, of course, are critical in providing the timecodes that structure the transcription.

Here’s what the Toolbox format looked like, and the next image shows how it came out in Elan.

Screen Shot 2016-02-01 at 11.32.48 am    Screen Shot 2016-02-01 at 11.38.18 am

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