Since 1987

SmartCAT Features


From the very beginning, SmartCAT was designed for speed. From the speed of translation to the power and efficiency of the transcript editor--every feature and design element incorporated into SmartCAT was designed to help you do more in less time. SmartCAT's transcript editor is designed to create precisely formatted, professional quality verbatim transcripts as quickly and efficiently as possible.

  • With customizable TurboKeys, SmartCAT allows for one-touch editing from the keyboard home row.
  • With HotKeys, SmartCAT gives you 52 recordable macros which can perform incredibly complex editing tasks with one keystroke.
  • SmartCAT’s efficient, compact dictionary design provides the fastest translation rate available.
  • Keyboard-based editing (both computer keyboard and steno keyboard), lets you maximize your hard earned skills while working at the computer.
Cheetah = Speed


  • Cheetah International strives to provide industry leading service. Our technical support is available 24 hours per day, 365 days per year. Our customers are our top priority, so we are here for you whenever you need us.
  • In-program Help - There are hundreds of screens of context-sensitive help topics throughout the program. The help file is the most comprehensive and up-to-date information about SmartCAT. The help file can also be printed out to a hardcopy if you prefer to have something you can hold in your hands.
  • Digital Manual - SmartCAT comes with a fully searchable, digital .pdf manual and separate quickstart guide. You can also get them from the Downloads Page. Contact Cheetah International to order a printed copy.
  • Walkthroughs - We provide intensive over-the-phone walkthroughs to help you get set up and learn different aspects of the software.
  • We offer in-person group or one-on-one training, online tutorials and webinars.
24 7 365 Support


SmartCAT has the most complete suite of Realtime features available, including Intelligent Conflict Resolution, Intelligent Number Formatting, Smart Word Endings, and full Realtime transcript editing from the steno keyboard (RealEdit).

Realtime Transcription

Automatic Briefs

During Realtime, SmartCAT can automatically make briefs for you. It scans for duplicate sets of steno, where you stroke several consecutive strokes in a row the same way, more than once. It will create a non-conflicting entry for it and put it in a separate auto-brief dictionary for this job. Auto-briefs are displayed in a small window above the transcript.


Full editing from the steno keyboard:

  • Capitalize
  • Perform globals
  • Number Formatting
  • Use Smart Punctuation or number formatting.

Anything that you can do from the computer keyboard, you can do from the steno keyboard! And all RealEdit capabilities are user-definable!


Intelligent Realtime

SmartCAT has an amazing amount of intelligence built into it that assists you with your Realtime, including Automatic Punctuation, Automatic Number Formatting, Smart Word Endings, Automatic Speaker IDs and Intelligent Alphabet Handling.

Intelligent Realtime

Time Stamping

  • Realtime testimony can be timecoded using the time-of-day clock in the computer.
  • Timecodes can be viewed, printed, and sent to attorney/judge stations.
  • Timecodes are also used for audio synchronization using SmartCAT's built-in audio function.

Realtime Litigation Support

When writing in Realtime, SmartCAT can output to a wide variety of Realtime litigation support (CIC) systems, including:

  • Bridge
  • CaseView
  • LiveNote
  • and More!

You can also output to another program on your computer, such as Realtime Coach!

Realtime Output

Audio Synchronization for SmartCAT

Here's a technological advance that serves you and your clients. SmartCAT's built-in audio function digitally records audio right onto your computer's hard disk, fully synchronized with your Realtime transcript.

Later on, when you (or your scopist) edit the job, you can select any point in the transcript and tell SmartCAT to play the corresponding audio. It makes verifying the transcript easy!

Not only that, but it provides a deliverable product that can make you money. SmartCAT records in .wav format, so it's playable on any Windows® system so you can provide the attorneys with a transcript on a CD-ROM or ZIP disk that includes the audio. If they want to hear the witness' tone of voice, or how long the witness paused before answering a question, it's right there for them.

SmartCAT's audio can be used with virtually any Windows® compatible sound card and microphone.


The core of any Computer-Aided Transcription software is the Editor. SmartCAT's editing capabilities are unmatched when it comes to important editing features that are easy to learn, understand and use.

Whether you are an independent reporter or connected with an office or reporting agency, SmartCAT has loads of new features you are sure to appreciate. SmartCAT supports an unlimited number of permanent and temporary dictionaries, and has the ability to select from multiple phonetics and/or real-edit dictionaries as well!

SmartCAT's WYSIWYG (what you see is what you get) transcript editor is a feature-rich editing environment designed solely to create precisely-formatted, professional quality verbatim transcripts as efficiently and quickly as possible.

Home Row Editing


SmartCAT's powerful Steno Global and Text Global functions have case sensitivity, whole word option, spellcheck, confirm each replace, and much more. The globals are applied to the file in the background, so you don't have to wait, and you can reverse or edit any global if you make a mistake, even if you've left the file and come back! You can also save a set of globals from a job to a file, and load that file into any other job so you don't have to repeat recurring globals for each job!

Spell Check

SmartCAT contains an excellent spelling checker that just keeps getting better and better! It operates interactively to check the current word or can scan to the next misspelling in a transcript, and detects double words, double Q&A, and consecutive colloquy by the same speaker. The batch spelling checker checks an entire transcript quickly, and gives you a list of suspect words that can be viewed in context, fixed, ignored, or added to your spellcheck lexicon (word list). You can add an unlimited number of words. SmartCAT comes packaged with multiple Spell Check Lexicons inluding medical and legal.


You can create lists of anything in SmartCAT, and call them up with a single keystroke within a file. For example, you might have a line at the top of your title page that says: IN AND FOR THE COUNTY OF {&COUNTIES}. Press [Space] to call up a list of counties, pick the one you want, and it is filled in automatically.

This isn't just a wimpy little 20-line file, either! You can have hundreds of lists, each list can have hundreds of entries, and each entry can be pages long. Imagine the possibilities! a database of all your attorney clients; a single file containing all of your various certificate pages and witness letters; a list of all the court reporters in your firm with their CSR numbers... All just one keystroke away. All automatically alphabetized for you when you call them up. And all created right within SmartCAT.

Intelligent alphabet handling

Finger spelling alphabets have always been tough for court reporters. Now, SmartCAT offers you a way to define one alphabet, and make format strokes to determine how your finger spelling comes out. Do you want it squished? Stitched? Acronymed? All of these, and more, can be done: ABC abc A-B-C A.B.C A.B.C. ABC A*B*C A B C a,b,c ... The format strokes can be embedded in other dictionary entries, so that the phrase "state your name" always puts you in "stitch" mode, for example. You can also, of course, define separate alphabets for each of these if you so desire.

Cheetah = Speed

Split Screen

  • Split-screen viewing of English and steno during both Realtime and editing.
  • Cross-tracking and dictionary lookup.
  • Add and delete dictionary entries.
  • Live scrolling of both steno and English during Realtime.

Customizable Editing Keystrokes


SmartCAT’s transcript editor is designed to create precisely formatted, professional quality verbatim transcripts as quickly and efficiently as possible. With customizable TurboKeys, SmartCAT allows for one-touch editing from the keyboard home row.


Imagine being able to turn your most common editing actions into the keystroke of your choice! Just specify which key to use, turn on the Hotkey Recorder, and perform the edits you want defined. From then on, press CONTROL and ALT (or SHIFT and ALT...52 customizable possibilities!) plus that key to perform your most commonly used commands. SmartCAT includes sample Hotkeys for changing paragraph types, handling interrupted questions, and much more!


Redaction is the process of hiding or obscuring certain pieces of information. Usually this is done for the sake of privacy (e.g., social security numbers in publicly accessible documents) or for security (e.g., the military will redact troop locations). In SmartCAT, there are several ways to redact sections of text, depending on your needs:

  • Redaction Pen / Mouse Pointer
  • Realtime Token
  • Character Attribute

Text can be redacted and obscured for printing, and creating ASCIIs or PDFs.

Additional Editing Features

  • Word swap
  • PreEdit
  • s-t-i-t-c-h-i-n-g
  • Witness paragraph formatting
  • Cut, copy & paste
  • Get file (include with or without steno)
  • Automatic question numbering
  • The ability to undo the last 50 changes
  • and too many more to mention here!
Cheetah = Speed

Number Handling

Intelligent Number Formatting is just one of the many intelligent editing features in SmartCAT.

SmartCAT automatically detects numbers during Realtime, and formats them appropriately. For example, something that might translate as "four double oh six" in another system would translate as "4006" in SmartCAT. You can actually see the number formatting as you write. You can also specify that numbers under a certain value should appear as words and numbers over a certain value should have their unit names as words. For example, you might want one through ten to be words, and 11 or greater to be digits. The other option allows things like 14,000 and 14,000,000 to be formatted as digits, but 14 billion and 14 trillion to use unit words ("billion" and "trillion").

SmartCAT also provides formatting triggers and tokens. A trigger is a word that causes the next number to format a certain way. For example, you might specify that if the word "cost" comes up, any number in the next 2 paragraphs should be formatted as dollars, or if the word "phone" comes up, any 7, 10, or 11-digit number in the same sentence should be formatted as a telephone number. Some of the formats supported include:

  • Digits with or without commas (1234 or 4,203)
  • Words (four thousand two hundred eight)
  • Dollars with or without cents ($2,394 or $14.23)
  • Dates (with many formats)
  • Times
  • Phone numbers, such as (510)656-0700 or 510/656-0700 or 510.656.0700
  • Zip codes (94539 or 94539-7482)
  • Social Security number (551-33-1555)
  • Ordinals (21st, 9th, 233rd)
  • Roman numerals (mcmlv or MCMLV)

The list goes on and on! It even works with mixed translations, like 45 thousand 24, which it will correctly format as 45,024.

Finishing Tools / Printing

SmartCAT offers a wide variety of litigation support capabilities, including automatic index building, concordance (word index), keyword index, RTF/CRE, and ASCII output.

Finishing Tools

Automatic Indexing

SmartCAT's indexing is a true one-pass automatic indexer that creates the indices, adds page (or page and line) numbers to the entries, sorts indices, and even creates multi-column indices with no further editing required.

SmartCAT can create "folded" indices, where entries on the same line are in different parts of the transcript. Take a look, for example, at this one (all of the examples shown on this page were generated automatically by SmartCAT):

                INDEX OF EXAMINATION

                     Direct   Cross   Redir Recross
Dr. Anderson ............ 4      21      46      48
Dr. Whitcomb ........... 61      86
Dr. Blake ............. 104     153     165

Dr. Anderson was examined on pages 4, 21, 46, and 48, and SmartCAT wrapped them all to one line. Folded indices can be up to six columns wide.

A more traditional index would be the Index of Exhibits, which you can have SmartCAT number automatically for you. It handles exhibit numbering with both letters and numbers.

                INDEX OF EXHIBITS

                                         Page  Line
10 Two-page document entitled  ........... 30     5

11 Multi-page document entitled  ......... 35    22
   "Billing Procedure"

12 Multi-page document entitled "How  ... 142     7
   to Barter"

13 Multi-page document titled  .......... 149     6
   "Response of ADL"

Remember, all of these are just examples. SmartCAT is extremely flexible, and can create virtually whatever you need. Here's one more:

Concordance (Word Index)

The concordance feature built in to SmartCAT allows you to specify custom formats (characters per line, number of columns and lines per page). It produces an index of every word in the transcript except those in your exception list, like the example below shows. When generating the concordance, you have a variety of options as shown in the image on the left.

beginners 9:2,16,20; 11:4
belief 12:4; 14:5,6; 190:12
biology 45:12,14; 92:11,14,19
bodies 43:20; 44:1,4,16; 47:2;
  49:4,6; 55:5
Brown 99:1; 145:23,29
CAT 24:12,15,19; 29:3,6; 44:2;
  102:3,6; 185:12
Cheetah 24:12,15,19; 29:3,6;
  44:2; 102:3,6; 185:12


ASCII files can be created in "page image" and custom formats, as well as Amicus, and Summation.


  • Print through any Windows® supported printer.
  • Print preview with condensed-formatting control.
  • Control timestamps, box outlines, header/footers, and page/line number printing.
  • Create jobs in .PDF format (with free plug-ins).

Condensed / Mini-Transcript Printing

SmartCAT's integrated condensing software can print multiple pages per sheet in different fonts from within SmartCAT!

  • Use exterior or interior margins.
  • 2, 4 or 6 pages per sheet.
  • Control timestamps, box outlines, header/footers, and page/line number printing.
  • Print direction control.
  • Create jobs in .PDF format (with free plug-ins).

Job Management

The Job Menu

The job menu is essentially a listing of all the SmartCAT transcripts that are in the current working directory. In addition to editing into a job from here, you are able to move, copy, rename, delete, mark complete, etc.

The job menu also shows any job dictionary assigned to each transcript, the number of pages and steno notes, which style sheet each job is using, the date the job was created, the date the job was last edited, whether or not the transcript has an audio file, and the date the job was marked complete.

Windows Integration

Shorcuts to access and send files to the SmartCAT work directory are installed throughout Windows.

Backups Feature

SmartCAT has the ability to make multiple backups of your jobs for you. Backups are automatically created at specific intervals and are also created each time you save your job or edit the job properties. Job backups are easily accessible from the job menu. SmartCAT also makes backup copies of your dictionaries.

Other SmartCAT Features

Headers and Footers with Tokens

  • Specify up to six lines of headers and footers on each page.
  • Change them throughout a transcript.
  • As many different headers or footers as you want in a single transcript.
  • Create "witness lines"-type headers on line 1.
  • Create tokens for SmartCAT to automatically fill in the witness, date, timestamp, speaker IDs, page, and total pages.
Header/Footer Tokens

Notes Translation

Translation speeds are well in excess of 20,000 pages/hour with a 50,000-word dictionary. Using a Windows 7 laptop with a 1.7 GHz AMD Athlon processor, the translation rate is about 400 pages per minute.

Cheetah = Speed

Split Notes

  • Steno notes can be viewed, split, joined and searched before translation.

Dictionary Maintenance

SmartCAT includes an intuitive dictionary editor with many advanced features:

  • Powerful filter utility to help you view only certain kinds of entries
  • Intelligent dictionary sorting
  • "Strip" utility for unused entries
  • Quick merge with job or temp dictionaries
  • Conversion to/from .RTF format
  • Conversion from TurboCAT format

CAT Software Compatibility

Cheetah International wrote the book on compatibility. Literally! Cheetah authored the RTF/CRE file interchange specification that allows CAT systems to transfer transcript files complete with steno, timecodes, globals, attributes, and much more.


Input Formats





Steno Notes

.RTF, .SGSTN, .NOT, Stentura, elan Mira, Fusion, Diamante, Baron TX, SmartWriter, StenoRam 3, Transcriptor-X, Lightspeed, Stylus, Impression

Output Formats


.RTF, .TXT/.PRT ASCII, SmartCAT .JOB, .PDF, Plain Text .TXT, .HTML


.RTF, SmartCAT .DIC, .PDF, Plain Text .TXT, .HTML, Phonetics .PHN, RealEdit .RED


Concordance.CRD, Keyword Index .KWD

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