One-Button OCR – CAERE’S OmniPage Pro 10 optical character recognition software – Software Review – Evaluation
Joel T. Patz
AT THE HEART OF CAERE’S OmniPage Pro 10 is a new engine teaming optical character recognition (OCR) technologies from three different programs. Along with additional dictionaries, this engine makes OCR more accurate than ever before.
After installation, OmniPage gives you the option of an automatic OCR process, or lets you select a document source type, layout, desired output, and destination. Choosing the default settings will reduce the entire scan-and-OCR process to a one-button task.
OmniPage surpasses its predecessors in handling complex documents, partly because its zone process (recognizing what’s a graphic, what’s text, and so forth) is integrated with its OCR process. Font rendering and matching also improve document integrity. Our test documents converted remarkably well.
Improvements in this version also include better straightening, OCR on color and grayscale backgrounds, a better scanner-troubleshooting wizard, and more accurate conversion of tables. We enjoyed Voice Read-Back, which reads scanned text back to you. We were also impressed with the ability to set intervals for scanning pages of a document from a flatbed scanner–the next best thing to an automatic document feeder.
As good as OmniPage is, there are still some limitations. Colored text is rendered in black. Several text scans refused to recognize integrated graphics, and color scanning resulted in more OCR errors.
But despite these flaws, OmniPage is light-years ahead of retyping text by hand. Add the inclusion of OmniPage Web Personal Edition for publishing up to 10 scanned pages to a Web site, and you have quite a bargain.
OmniPage pro 10
Requirements Win 95/98/NT 4.0, 32MB of RAM, 90MB of hard
disk space, CD-ROM drive
Price $499; upgrade (from earlier version or any
other OCR package) $100
Manufacturer Caere Corp., 800-535-7226, www.caere.com
PROS Idiot-proof OCR, high accuracy
CONS Text color not maintained
HOME OFFICE COMPUTING’S product scores are weighted averages of 1- to 10-point ratings for: Value (30 percent of total), Performance (30 percent of total), Ease of Use (20 percent of total), and Suitability for Home Office Use (20 percent of total).
V = Value
P = Performance
E = Ease of Use
S = Suitability for Home Office Use
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