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All you need to know about OCR

OCR is being used in everywhere. Back in old days it was not easy for us to extract data from printed documents. Now it has been simply for using OCR

Be it your office, school or grocery store, taking notes of important stuffs has become an important part of our life but let’s face it, in 21st century we don’t want to waste our time on taking notes instead why not take pictures and convert it into PDF for later usage. What happens when we want to use the texts written in those PDF files. This is when ‘PDF to Word Online’ takes place. Our website uses the OCR technology to extract texts from your pdfs and make your life a bit easier.

What is OCR Technology?

Optical Character Recognition (OCR), is a technology which enables the user to convert scanned documents, pictures, pdf files into a form that computer can understand and manipulate.

When we scan an image, it is typically stored as a bit-mapped file in TIF format. When the document is displayed we are able to read it, but to the computer, it is just a series of black and white dots, known as a raster image. The computer does not actually recognize anything that is written. OCR goes through each line of the image and attempts to determine whether the black and white dots represent a specific letter or number. More advanced OCR programs are capable of keeping the original format of the document after the conversion.

How it works:

All OCR systems have an optical scanner built in for reading text, and sophisticated software for analyzing images. Most OCR systems use a combination of hardware and software in order to recognize characters in a document. For example, you have a JPG image with a lot of text on it. You want to convert it into txt format. You can easily do it by using OCR. You can convert JPG to Txt with a single click.

Why it is important for you:

Imagine you are an employee of a renowned company and you’ve got a paper document - for example, magazine article, brochure, or PDF contract your boss sent to you by email. Clearly, a scanner is not enough to make this information available for editing, say in Microsoft Word. This is when OCR is important.

Current Usage of OCR

• To record the data for, machine readable business documents like check book, passport, invoice, bank statement, id card etc.

• To automatically recognize number plates.

• To extract business card information into a contact list.

• To quickly make textual versions of scanned documents.

• To make electronic images of scanned or printed documents searchable over the internet. e.g. Google books.

• To perform handwritten interaction with a computer, e.g. pen computing for designers.

Drawbacks

Even the best OCR programs fail to perform properly, especially when they're given, very old documents or poor quality printed text.

Early versions of OCR programs needed to be trained with images of each character, and was very slow and time consuming, it wasn’t capable of processing multiple words at a time therefore worked on, one font at a time.

How to get better results?

Follow these instructions to improve the success rate of OCR without meddling with the process itself:

1. It’s better not to use any unrecognizable fonts.

2. Use a better quality image or increase the contrast of it.

3. Make sure there is no watermark, image or item covering the text.

This is a YourStory community post, written by one of our readers.The images and content in this post belong to their respective owners. If you feel that any content posted here is a violation of your copyright, please write to us at mystory@yourstory.com and we will take it down. There has been no commercial exchange by YourStory for the publication of this article.

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