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What is OCR (Optical Character Recognition)?

What is OCR?

Optical character recognition abbreviated to OCR is a technology for recognizing characters from scanned images, handwritten and printed text. With recognizing the characters, the text from those source materials can be machine-encoded, then editable, searchable, and easy to transmit and store. This technology is an application of sciences in pattern recognition, artificial intelligence and computer vision.


OCR technology is widely used for document digitization. This technology can significantly reduce the work load of digitizing handwritten manuscripts. With its help, people need not transcribe every word manually and can also decrease the probability of typo. Those books published before the digital time can be easily digitalized and then indexed in computer with OCR technology. This tremendously facilitates information retrieval, data mining, machine learning, and computational linguistics.


OCR technology is also helpful for text-to-speech application, which can make a computer to read out the text from scanned images or other non-textual materials. Machine translation application can benefit something from OCR for the latter can machine-encode non-textual information to computer-recognizable text.


There is a branch of OCR, ICR (Intelligent Character Recognition). Software with ICR technology always has a self-learning system which can update recognition database for new handwriting patterns. This system can increase the accuracy rate in character recognition with long time use. ICR currently is widely used in handwriting recognition software in digital devices like tablet computer, mobile phone and handwriting board.


OCR is growing with a long history. However, there are still some shortages for OCR application. For example, it is difficult to recognize text from complicate images in multiple colors or complex backgrounds. To Latin script or handwriting text, the recognition accuracy degree is relatively low.


VeryPDF supplies a series of applications that use updated advanced OCR technology. With these applications, you can easily and quickly transfer your data from non-textual material to machine recognizable, editable and searchable textual files.


Example screenshots:

Convert image file to text fileExtract text from image file

PDF to Text OCR Converter: Convert scanned PDF and image files to plain text files.

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