Computer Newbies forum


Hard Copy to text

by kawetzel / May 19, 2013 7:14 AM PDT

Hello All, I have a stack of very old typed hard copy documents. I have a scanner that can create either jpgs or PDFs. There are too many pages to manually type it all in, what would you recommend on how I can convert these old docs into editable text files? Are there freeware software that can convert either jpgs or pdfs to text files or do I just need to find a freeware OCR program for my scanner? And what would you recommend?

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by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / May 19, 2013 7:22 AM PDT
In reply to: Hard Copy to text

The free stuff tends to be hard on folk. I've used TESSERACT but I fear most users would be be put off by its command line and maybe the pre-processing that might be required. But it's free and is very good. And by good I'm not writing about it's user interface but that it gets the work done.

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If you scan tp PDF, should should be able to take the
by VAPCMD / May 19, 2013 8:55 AM PDT
In reply to: Hard Copy to text

scanned DOC and copy/paste it into an editable text...Notepad, Wordpad or your favorite text editior.

Let us know.


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If IT's Just Plain Text, Such As A Letter, Then OCR Software
by Grif Thomas Forum moderator / May 19, 2013 9:46 AM PDT
In reply to: Hard Copy to text

...might fit the bill.. Many scanners include a type of OCR (Optical Character Resolution) software from which you simply place the letter in the scanner, then choose the settings to scan the file to a .doc file (Microsoft Word).. For example, every newer HP scanner that I've used recently includes a type of free OCR scanning software. (The HP Photosmart I'm sitting at now has one named "I.R.I.S. OCR". ) Same with Epson regarding free, included OCR software. In addition, if you've got a recent version of Microsoft Office installed, I believe the "Microsoft Office Document Imaging" should do the job as well.

In my experience, most OCR software only works well with very basic text documents.. If they are complex charts, or pictures on the page, with lots of lines, etc., the programming doesn't seem to transfer the information correctly to the Word document.. On the other hand, with plain text letters, they do a fairly decent job BUT it's important to proof-read the final document as there are usually a few mistakes.

For some other free OCR programs, the link below might help.

Hope this helps.


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