Optical Character Recognition (OCR)

Collection by Ivo Vynckier

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Learn about Optical Character Recognition. Discover how image scanners and OCR software works, learn about typefaces, alphabets and more.

Ivo Vynckier
Complex layouts - and yet modern OCR can "reformat" your scanned documents, columns and all!

What Gets Read And What Doesn’t | How OCR Works

How page analysis detects the text zones, graphics and tables in a scanned page.

Old dot matrix printouts. Difficult fonts composed of separate dots and binarization issues because of the green and white bands.

B Is for Binarize | How OCR Works

Learn about binarization, a necessary step in OCR that separates text from background.

That's how printed documents looked like 100 years ago. Talk about a challenge for OCR software!

… With a Document Revolution Thrown in | How OCR Works

How the document revolution with word processing, desktop publishing (DTP) and laser printers created new challenges for OCR software.

Typewritten stuff from the middle of the 20th century. (This is a genuine scan from a J. Edgar Hoover letter, by the way.)

… With a Document Revolution Thrown in | How OCR Works

How the document revolution with word processing, desktop publishing (DTP) and laser printers created new challenges for OCR software.

Faxes are old-fashioned in this age, but that's the kind of image these things produced. Plenty of degraded letter shapes!

… Or Do Word Recognition! | How OCR Works

How word recognition surpasses the OCR accuracy of artificial neural networks.

Multifunctional peripheral (MFP) - all-in-one device

Putting the Hardware to Work | How OCR Works

Discover the numerous and varied applications of document scanners – text recognition, document management, form reading etc.

Flatbed scanner with an open lid

Putting Peripherals in the Center | How OCR Works

From flatbed scanners to mouse scanners: discover the characteristics of the various scanner types.

Mobile, wireless scanner

Putting Peripherals in the Center | How OCR Works

From flatbed scanners to mouse scanners: discover the characteristics of the various scanner types.

Sheetfed scanner for home (SOHO) use

Putting Peripherals in the Center | How OCR Works

From flatbed scanners to mouse scanners: discover the characteristics of the various scanner types.

Bank check sorters were the first reading systems - and the first large computer systems!

MICR, ERMA and Ronald Reagan | Spielberg, Abagnale and OCR

An introduction to check fraud and magnetic ink character recognition. Get familiar with the float, MICR, ERMA and Ronald Reagan’s role in it.

Text sample with the banking fonts OCR-A and OCR-B

The Revolutionary I.B.M. Selectric Typewriter | Spielberg, Abagnale and OCR

Why check forgers loved the IBM Selectric, the revolutionary electric typewriter.

Scanned image to be recognized with OCR

From Stationery to Signage | Spielberg, Abagnale and OCR

How con man, check forger, impostor and escape artist Frank Abagnale got an early start in stationery.

Sheetfed scanner for office use

Putting Peripherals in the Center | How OCR Works

From flatbed scanners to mouse scanners: discover the characteristics of the various scanner types.

Flatbed scanner with an automatic document feeder (ADF)

Putting Peripherals in the Center | How OCR Works

From flatbed scanners to mouse scanners: discover the characteristics of the various scanner types.

Old paper article. That's how badly newspapers (and other printed material) were printed until the 70s. Hard to believe, isn't it?

How OCR Works | A close look at Optical Character Recognition

An in-depth look at OCR technology. Discover how image scanners and Optical Character Recognition work, learn about typefaces, alphabets and more.

Codeline with the E13B banking font on a check. The data on checks was read before "regular" documents could be read with OCR software.

MICR, ERMA and Ronald Reagan | Spielberg, Abagnale and OCR

An introduction to check fraud and magnetic ink character recognition. Get familiar with the float, MICR, ERMA and Ronald Reagan’s role in it.