Rebus brings desktop search to scanned documents

The company's Recollect Desktop software makes it possible to search for information in documents scanned into a computer.

These days, people are managing so much information on a daily basis that being able to find it quickly and efficiently is becoming crucial.

With its Spotlight desktop search tool--part of Mac OS X--Apple made it possible to search not just text-based files like Word documents, but also things like PDF files that don't have modifiable text.

Windows users, too, have choices for desktop search, like offerings from Google and Microsoft.

Rebus Technology's Recollect Desktop software makes it possible to search scanned documents for information, a feature the company says hasnt been commercially available until now. Rebus

But now, Windows users will have a more powerful tool at their disposal, Rebus Technology's Recollect Desktop, a search tool that, according to Rebus, can find just about any kind of data on someone's computer, including information from scanned documents.

That is a big step forward for desktop search, the company argues, because it means that the file cabinets full of documents many people have, things such as medical files, insurance papers, tax returns and the like, have to date been beyond the grasp of any easy digital filing system.

Now, however, people can scan such documents and then, when they need information from those papers, they can use Recollect Desktop to find what they're looking for.

And according to Rebus CEO Vijay Rangarajan, the software has one major additional feature, an ability to locate information even when a user doesn't know exactly how things are spelled or when the process of scanning a paper document resulted in misspellings being introduced into the digital document.

Rangarajan said the software costs $150 and will be useful for large numbers of people due to the mass proliferation of inexpensive all-in-one printer/fax/scanners.

However, he added that no one has yet figured out how to digitally search handwritten documents.