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A Deep Dive into OCR: Converting Photos to Text Seamlessly

Updated: Apr 2


A Deep Dive into OCR: Converting Photos to Text Seamlessly

You might’ve already heard about OCR as it has become increasingly popular over the years. If you’ve ever read or heard anything about extracting text from an image, you are bound to come across the term “OCR”.


Considering you’re here, we understand you want to learn more about it. Well, you’ve come to the right place for it. We’re about to tell you everything you need to know about OCR in this post. Let’s start with what OCR is.


What is OCR?


What is OCR? - A Deep Dive into OCR: Converting Photos to Text Seamlessly

OCR stands for Optical Character Recognition. This technology is usually used in image-to-text extracting tools to enable editing of the textual information in a picture. You cannot edit what’s written in an image, but you can now extract it and then edit it in the form of a document, thanks to OCR.


Optical Character Recognition works in a program or tool by following these three steps:

  • Pre-processing

  • Text recognition

  • Post-processing


In the pre-processing step, OCR removes any blurriness from the given image and prepares it for scanning. Text recognition includes pattern-matching and understanding what the text inside the given image is. And lastly, pros-processing includes converting the extracted textual data into a computer file.

Now that you know what OCR really is, let us tell you how you can make use of it yourself.


How to convert an image to text using OCR?


OCR isn’t effective unless it is paired with a program or a tool that utilizes it. There are many of them available on the internet and you can easily find them simply by looking up “OCR tools” on Google. One thing that you should know though is that not all of these are as effective as some might produce better results than others.


To find the best ones among them, here are some things that you should consider while choosing.

  • The text extractor should have good user reviews.

  • It should allow uploading images from multiple sources. i.e. Device storage, Dropbox, etc.

  • It should be free to use.

  • It should have multiple language support.

  • The tool should allow users to download the extracted text in text documents.


To make things easier for you, we’ve already found a tool that fulfills all these requirements and produces accurate outputs. It is Imagetotext.info. You can use this one or find one yourself, whatever suits you best.


Once you’ve opened the tool. All you have to do next is to provide it with an image and hit the “Submit” button. The tool will extract the text it contains for you.



It will do that by utilizing OCR and you would be able to copy or download the result. To provide you with a demonstration, we’re using the tool we found. Here’s a screenshot that shows the tool extracting text from the image we provided.


How to convert an image to text using OCR? - A Deep Dive into OCR: Converting Photos to Text Seamlessly

As you can see, the image-to-text converter gave us the text present in the image in mere seconds. You can use it to extract text from images of documents or just any image in general.


We understand that we’re providing a demonstration using the tool of our choice. But you don’t have to worry even if you choose some other one since most of them are the same and you can use this demo as a reference for the tool you’re going to use. With that being said, we’d also like to give you some tips that can help in getting accurate results from an OCR tool.


Tips for effective image-to-text conversion using OCR


  • Check the image for blurriness: OCR tools can work with pictures that are a bit blurry but they struggle to extract text from images that are way too blurry. You have to make sure the image you’re providing the tool is clear and isn’t too blurry. The same thing goes for pixelation and graininess.

  • Fix the alignment of the image: If the image isn’t aligned correctly, the tool might have some difficulty in figuring out where to start extracting the text. For example, it might extract the text in a reverse order. Therefore, you should check that the alignment of the image is right, whether vertical or horizontal.

  • Ensure the brightness is enough: If the image is too dull, OCR might struggle and produce inaccurate results since it won’t be able to read and understand the text easily. You should increase the brightness of the image that you want to extract text from before providing it to the tool. If the brightness is enough, you don’t have to bring it up even further though.


 

Takeaway


OCR is a technology that is utilized by programs and tools to extract text from images. You can utilize them and extract any amount of text from an image seamlessly in almost an instant. In this article, we’ve provided a whole guide on how you can utilize tools that use OCR along with some tips that can help you get accurate results.


 
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