Monday, September 15, 2014

Mobile Capture and OCR

I have been to a few conferences lately, and it seems the focus on mobile OCR solutions is waning.  I am not sure why, but I have some theories.  Below are some of my thoughts:

  • The Cloud - First off, OCR in the cloud can be expensive.  With the transfer of documents back and forth, you are paying for bandwidth, storage and processor cycles.  
  • Security - You can say what you like, but there are still serious security concerns with all things cloud.  Just look at the recent iCloud breach.  Put something up in the cloud, and who know who will access your data.
  • Lack of Consumer Awareness - you general, run of the mill consumer really has no concept of what OCR can do for them.  It would take massive marketing efforts to eucate the consumer populous.
  • Businesses Still Like On Premise - let's face it, there are numerous on premise OCR solutions that can do the conversions quickly and without much expense.
With all of that said, there are some interesting new companies focused on online capture and OCR solutions.   Optical Character Recognition (OCR) Apps are now driving some great business processes.

Thursday, April 24, 2014

3 Most Important Features in OCR Software

Optical Character Recognition (OCR) Important Features

Optical Character Recognition (OCR) Software

So what are the 3 most important features in OCR Software?  See the list below:

  1. Speed - You need to get a character per second, or a pages per minute rating on the software to make sure it can handle your job size.
  2. Accuracy - OCR Software does you no good if the output is horrible.  Most engines today are in the 95% accuracy rate if they are given decent documents.
  3. PDF Output - PDF is the standard, and a searchable PDF provides great flexibility.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Mobile Capture with PSI:Capture, SkyDrive and an iPad

 bit of an off topic post, but this demo includes barcode recognition within digital photos from an iPad:

Sunday, June 10, 2012

OCR and SharePoint: What features do I need?

OCR and SharePoint: What features do I need?

As many organizations go down the road to place scanned documents into SharePoint, there are several areas of key focus.  A little planning will help to leverage OCR technology, and pre-OCR documents before they are placed in a SharePoint library as PDFs.  So what is the true value of OCR in any SharePoint deployment?  It all depends on what you are trying to achieve.  The Scanning with SharePoint BLOG has a great post on what to evaluate before you start the scanning process:  How do you want to find your documents in SharePoint?  Below are some ways to utilize OCR, and some definitions of key types:

  1. Full Text OCR - Optical Character Recognition for SharePoint, or OCR is typically associated with conversion of an image to full text.  When you scan a document, it is a pure image, and the text within is not searchable, nor can you copy and paste.  The OCR process can give you pdfs that can be indexed by SharePoint Search.  Is Full Text OCR Necessary?  Read the link for some thoughts.
  2. Zone OCR - Zone OCR can be utilized to extract information from a specific location on a repeatable form.  The information collected can be automatically entered into a SharePoint column.  This is a huge time save if you need to automatically collect information from a large volume of forms, and Optical Character Recognition by zone can really help speed up the process.  
  3. Advanced Data Extraction (ADE) - This is the ultimate in efficiency and automation, and only a few apps give you this OCR functionality without an exorbitant cost.  In a nutshell, ADE provides pattern matching for information extraction.  So if you are looking for a 6 digit number, it auto-extracts this information.  During the OCR process, ADE adds to accuracy and speed by finding only what you need.    inForm has a great product for SharePoint Capture and OCR that can provide a robust ADE engine.
  4. Point and Click OCR -   Point and Click OCR allows you to use the mouse to choose what you want to throw into a SharePoint field.  The images are pre-OCR'd or the process is performed real time to give you the desired information.  
  5. Rubberband OCR - this method of OCR processing allows you to drag your mouse over an area of text and auto-enter the data into a SharePoint column.  It is great for information that spans multiple lines, and can convert the text in the image quite easily.

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Mobile Access to SharePoint OCR PDFs?

Scan2Go: Take Your File Cabinets with You
Join us for a Webinar on June 28
Space is limited.
Reserve your Webinar seat now at:
Ever wish you had your file cabinets with you?  PSIGEN and Colligo have wrapped a mobile access solution around Microsoft SharePoint through Scan2Go, a document management solution for scanning, syncing, and securely accessing documents on the iPad. Scan2Go incorporates PSIGEN's PSI:Capture document capture platform, to scan and migrate paper documents to Microsoft SharePoint, which can then be securely accessed, remotely or offline, through Colligo Briefcase, the secure iPad app for SharePoint.

Scan2Go: Take Your File Cabinets with You
Thursday, June 28, 2012
10:00 AM - 11:00 AM PDT

After registering you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the Webinar.

System Requirements
PC-based attendees
Required: Windows® 7, Vista, XP or 2003 Server
Macintosh®-based attendees
Required: Mac OS® X 10.5 or newer

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

What types of OCR Software are there?

In examining Optical Character Recognition (OCR) software, you need to examine your needs and determine what type you require.

Desktop OCR Software

For day to day use, most users will utilize Desktop OCR software.  It is appropriate for converting scanned documents to Word format, copying and pasting sections from documents, etc.  Apps that fall into this category are OmniPage, PaperPort, etc.

Batch OCR and Capture Software

If you are processing large volumes of documents, and need to enable a process or workflow with scanners in your company, typically you will utilize document capture software with enhanced OCR capabilities.  This type of OCR Software takes processing to the next level and uses automation to extract information from the documents, as well as make them searchable PDF documents.  An example of this type of software is inForm's iCapture.