Video Hardware needed for Deaf community support


Jul 12, 2009
I am currently working on a pretty complex system of hardware/software for the purpose of recording Live VIDEO directly to DVD. We have Multiple cameras, Computers, Monitors, Sound systems, DVD Recorders, TV monitors.

Currently we have the system working, so we can record live to the DVD, and seems to be working so far. Problem is, We would like to have something for our Deaf audience. Either Closed Captioning, or Picture in Picture for ASL Sign language translation. We can get whatever hardware we need to get, but would prefer to keep it cheap. We also would like to have Video Conferencing with SKYPE as well if possible.

Which is easier hardware wise? Closed Captioning Live, or Picture in Picture? (BTW: we already have translators for the ASL)

If PiP, what's the easiest way to get two video input feeds onto one output feed? What hardware do we need to integrate it?

If Closed Captioning, does it need to be typed manually by someone? or is there an automatic system out there?

Any good websites were I can read up on one or both items?
As far as i know closed captioning must be typed by hand, if there was a reliable speech recognition software out there my school would be using it as we have a very large deaf population, but all of our CC is hand typed live at events. If you use PiP best option would probably be software based PiP rather than finding a piece of hardware that will merge the two video streams as it will likely be very expensive.

They come with a trade off, PiP for the interpreters is more accurate but if the screen is not large enough it is difficult to see, CC is easier to read, and helpful to the hearing population in large venues with bad acoustics, but requires extremely good accuracy and high typing speed on the part of the person running it, somewhere around 90WPM is about the normal speaking rate.