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What's the best solution for OCR analysis of handwritten text strings that appear on a map?

More in-depth explanation of what I'm looking for:

I'm working on a large data processing effort involving a library of engineering drawings. These are for utilities, so the drawings are essentially street maps overlaid with features like transmission lines and code numbers related to these lines. The code numbers are mostly handwritten–very neat and consistent engineer's handwriting, but handwritten nonetheless. Also, because the code numbers correspond to transmission lines, they are all over the drawing, at different angles as they follow the lines. I'd like to find an OCR solution for harvesting the code numbers from these drawings; does anyone have any suggestions?

A similar problem would be: given a city map, extract all the street names, addresses, and points of interest.

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Not a duplicate; none of these other questions have addressed skew text or combining OCR with graphical analysis of maps. –  sigil Aug 12 '11 at 20:49
    
But they do suggest many OCR software packages for you to check out and try; if none of them work my guess would be you're probably out of luck. –  Ƭᴇcʜιᴇ007 Aug 12 '11 at 20:54
    
Maybe, maybe not, but it is still a different and valid question. –  soandos Aug 12 '11 at 21:21

1 Answer 1

I think your best bet would probably be Kofax Capture, though you might also need the handwriting extraction module for KTM (Kofax Transormation Modules) as well.

Kofax Capture will perform a full-text OCR of your document, and has many options which may assist in what you are trying to do - however, there are limitations to what KC can extract without adding KTM into the mix. Neither is particularly cheap! Without seeing your documents, I couldn't be 100% sure that extraction will be practical for your scenario though.

You could contact your local Kofax Partner and enquire about an evaluation license, however to get the best from the software you would also need some consultancy (some parts of the configuration aren't all that intuitive!).

DISCLOSURE:
I Work for a Kofax Partner, and hold both KC8 and KTM4 certifications.
The above suggestion is made by me personally, not on behalf of or by my
employer and does not reflect any formal endorsement of these products for
Your intended purpose by my employer.
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