CAT (Computer-Aided Transcription) software is a special court reporting program that translates steno notes into English. The reporter enters different words into his or her dictionary, then the computer matches his or her steno notes to those dictionary entries.
Any words the reporter writes differently than those in the dictionary — or words that he or she has not programmed in yet — the scopist is responsible to try to figure out.
While the reporter version of the software costs several thousand dollars, the scopist version runs around $1500 or so. And since the scopist can save dictionary entries for the reporter, both constantly work toward building the reporter’s dictionary and improving her translation rate. It is best for the reporter and scopist to use the same CAT system when working together.