Those who have heard this name for the first time, let me give you a short introduction: ABBYY FineReader 9.0 Express is the finest Optical Character Recognition (OCR) software you will ever find in the market. I repeat, it’s the best OCR software available and it beats its nearest competitor by a mile and a half.
Some time ago, I was looking for an OCR software to convert a 350 page book I had scanned, into text. Naturally, the first thing I did was download a couple of freeware that all boasted something like 99% accuracy in conversion. That’s a figure these software publishers pulled out of their asses, because every tool I tried throws up a whole lot of garbage, and then I have to go through it and correct each error. It’s tedious, it’s time consuming, it’s boring.
Then I downloaded ABBYY FineReader 30 days trial version, and for the first time I got 100% accurate results. ABBYY FineReader just works, you don’t have to do a damn thing. It automatically recognizes columns, paragraph breaks, italics, bold texts and images. It knows which images to keep and which to discard, though it does err sometimes, but only with images never with texts. For instance, the book I was OCRing, had decorated borders in some of the pages, as well as pictures books normally carry. ABBYY FineReader automatically ignored the borders while retaining the in-page images.
ABBYY FineReader supports batch conversion. So all I did was load the scanned pages into the software, clicked read and sat back to watch in awe.
If you don’t want to go the automated way, you can use the manual method. Using various tool akin to those found in image editing application (selection tools, eraser, crop, tables etc), you can select areas on the page to scan or specify areas to ignore. You can also use a combination of automatic and manual method where you first let the program scan by itself and then fine tune the results.
ABBYY FineReader can also directly scan pages on your scanner and load the same into the software for text conversion.
Now for a limited time, which isn’t specified, the publisher is giving away this amazing software for free. On their promotion page, click on “Free Download” and go through the purchase procedure but before checking out apply the promo code “designingspaces” to get full rebate.