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Proceedings Paper

Practical vision based degraded text recognition system
Author(s): Khader Mohammad; Sos Agaian; Hani Saleh
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Paper Abstract

Rapid growth and progress in the medical, industrial, security and technology fields means more and more consideration for the use of camera based optical character recognition (OCR) Applying OCR to scanned documents is quite mature, and there are many commercial and research products available on this topic. These products achieve acceptable recognition accuracy and reasonable processing times especially with trained software, and constrained text characteristics. Even though the application space for OCR is huge, it is quite challenging to design a single system that is capable of performing automatic OCR for text embedded in an image irrespective of the application. Challenges for OCR systems include; images are taken under natural real world conditions, Surface curvature, text orientation, font, size, lighting conditions, and noise. These and many other conditions make it extremely difficult to achieve reasonable character recognition. Performance for conventional OCR systems drops dramatically as the degradation level of the text image quality increases. In this paper, a new recognition method is proposed to recognize solid or dotted line degraded characters. The degraded text string is localized and segmented using a new algorithm. The new method was implemented and tested using a development framework system that is capable of performing OCR on camera captured images. The framework allows parameter tuning of the image-processing algorithm based on a training set of camera-captured text images. Novel methods were used for enhancement, text localization and the segmentation algorithm which enables building a custom system that is capable of performing automatic OCR which can be used for different applications. The developed framework system includes: new image enhancement, filtering, and segmentation techniques which enabled higher recognition accuracies, faster processing time, and lower energy consumption, compared with the best state of the art published techniques. The system successfully produced impressive OCR accuracies (90% -to- 93%) using customized systems generated by our development framework in two industrial OCR applications: water bottle label text recognition and concrete slab plate text recognition. The system was also trained for the Arabic language alphabet, and demonstrated extremely high recognition accuracy (99%) for Arabic license name plate text recognition with processing times of 10 seconds. The accuracy and run times of the system were compared to conventional and many states of art methods, the proposed system shows excellent results.

Paper Details

Date Published: 17 February 2011
PDF: 12 pages
Proc. SPIE 7881, Multimedia on Mobile Devices 2011; and Multimedia Content Access: Algorithms and Systems V, 78810T (17 February 2011); doi: 10.1117/12.871729
Show Author Affiliations
Khader Mohammad, The Univ. of Texas at San Antonio (United States)
Sos Agaian, The Univ. of Texas at San Antonio (United States)
Hani Saleh, The Univ. of Texas at San Antonio (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 7881:
Multimedia on Mobile Devices 2011; and Multimedia Content Access: Algorithms and Systems V
David Akopian; Cees G. M. Snoek; Nicu Sebe; Reiner Creutzburg; Lyndon Kennedy, Editor(s)

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