What is an OCR System?

Optical character recognition (OCR) is the translation of optically scanned bitmaps of printed text characters into character codes, such as ASCII. An OCR system is an efficient way to help you turn printed/scanned documents, image or .PDF files into files that can be edited, searched and otherwise manipulated on a computer.

ABBYY FineReader is an easy-to-use program that recognizes texts in practically any font without any prior training. The program features high recognition accuracy and low sensitivity to print defects due to its incorporation of special recognition technology based on the principles of Integral, Purposeful and Adaptable (IPA) perception.

ABBYY’s IPA Technology

ABBYY FineReader’s recognition process is based on the principles of ABBYY’s IPA perception. Three principles determine the behavior of the system:

There are two stages in the process of inputting a document for OCR:

  1. Scanning. During the scanning stage, a scanner reads the image and transfers it into a computer. The acquired image is nothing more than a picture (a set of black, white and color dots that is not editable with a word processor).
  2. Recognition. During the recognition stage, ABBYY FineReader analyzes the image file transmitted by the scanner (layout analysis) and recognizes each character. The layout analysis (selecting the recognition areas, tables, pictures, lines, and individual characters) and image reading processes are closely related. Page layout analysis is more accurate when the nature of the text is known to the application.

The system generates a hypothesis about a recognition object (a character, part of a character, or several glued characters) and then accepts or rejects the hypothesis according to whether the structural elements are present. These structural elements are computer equivalents of character parts crucial for human perception (arcs, circles, dots, etc.). The application then adapts itself to the text according to the degree of accuracy attained. Purposeful searching and context information enable the system to recognize even torn and distorted characters making the system oblivious to print defects. Recognized text, which can be edited or saved in a convenient format, is displayed in the ABBYY FineReader’s Text window.

How to input a document in less than a minute?
New features of ABBYY FineReader 8.0