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Jackiex
26-02-2004, 07:56 AM
I want to scan a page of writing onto my computer and then change it within word. Can I do this with any off the shelve scanner or do I need additional hardware/software?
I have never used a scanner before hence the easy question!
Additionally do any of you do this and does it work well?

godfather
26-02-2004, 08:06 AM
Most scanners should be bundled with OCR (optical character recognition) software.

Yes it works (sort of) but I have given up using it.
The bundled software is often basic in capabilities and better software is very expensive.
The error correction required sometimes takes longer than typing it in again.
The accuracy is entirely dependent on the quality of the original, and the format.
Generally it requires a reasonable size typeface and a very clean crisp copy as the original. Typed copy such as newspaper articles are a disaster in my experience.

But for plain documents from a good original, some reasonable success should be possible.
Graphics and columns can throw it as well.

Susan B
26-02-2004, 01:18 PM
I have done lots of scanning of text documents in the past and like Godfather says it can be more hassle than it is worth. Best results are from good clean copy of typewritten text, eg letters. Newspapers are hopeless and magazines, etc only slightly better. The columns throw the OCR for a curve but I have got around that by selecting one column at a time to scan either with the selection tool or by covering up columns with a piece of blank paper. Very time consuming - I could have typed up the copy I scanned by the time I fiddled around doing that and cleaned the errors up afterwards. Mind you, I do type fast. :D

My scanner came with a "Lite" version of OCR software but I have read that the full versions (expensive, as Godfather mentioned) do a much better job.

Shortstop
26-02-2004, 09:29 PM
I do quite a bit of text scanning. I don't know whether I'm imagining it but I reckon text scans better into Notepad where I use the Terminal font - good for any cleanup that's necessary. It can then be copied into Word for editing as required.