Feeds

Google eyes filing cabinets

Paper files next for the great data hoover

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

Google has revealed plans to help convert the world's paper filing cabinets, in Tron-like fashion, into mere nodes in the great hive mind.

The firm will be using an optical character recognition program called Tesseract that was found gathering dust in Hewlett Packard's garage.

"In a nutshell, we are all about making information available to users, and when this information is in a paper document, OCR is the process by which we can convert the pages of this document into text that can then be used for indexing," Google uber techie Luc Vincent said on the firm's code blog today.

Once recognised as one of the three most accurate OCRs on the market, Tesseract had been out of action since 1995.

HP decided it was better out than in if it wasn't making any money and punted it to the Information Science Research Institute at the University of Las Vegas to have it restored for an open source release. The uni gave it to Google, where it was quickly assimilated.

The software has some limitations, Vincent said. Comparatively speaking, it's not that accurate any more, it will only read English, does not like multiple columns or fancy layouts, and baulks at greyscale and colour documents. But, he said it was better than any other open source OCR software.

"Google currently "reads" almost every web page in the world. Come help us read all the printed material as well!" the firm said in an advertisement for OCR engineers. ®

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

More from The Register

next story
PEAK APPLE: iOS 8 is least popular Cupertino mobile OS in all of HUMAN HISTORY
'Nerd release' finally staggers past 50 per cent adoption
Microsoft to bake Skype into IE, without plugins
Redmond thinks the Object Real-Time Communications API for WebRTC is ready to roll
Microsoft promises Windows 10 will mean two-factor auth for all
Sneak peek at security features Redmond's baking into new OS
Mozilla: Spidermonkey ATE Apple's JavaScriptCore, THRASHED Google V8
Moz man claims the win on rivals' own benchmarks
FTDI yanks chip-bricking driver from Windows Update, vows to fight on
Next driver to battle fake chips with 'non-invasive' methods
DEATH by PowerPoint: Microsoft warns of 0-day attack hidden in slides
Might put out patch in update, might chuck it out sooner
Ubuntu 14.10 tries pulling a Steve Ballmer on cloudy offerings
Oi, Windows, centOS and openSUSE – behave, we're all friends here
Was ist das? Eine neue Suse Linux Enterprise? Ausgezeichnet!
Version 12 first major-number Suse release since 2009
prev story

Whitepapers

Why cloud backup?
Combining the latest advancements in disk-based backup with secure, integrated, cloud technologies offer organizations fast and assured recovery of their critical enterprise data.
Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
New hybrid storage solutions
Tackling data challenges through emerging hybrid storage solutions that enable optimum database performance whilst managing costs and increasingly large data stores.
Getting ahead of the compliance curve
Learn about new services that make it easy to discover and manage certificates across the enterprise and how to get ahead of the compliance curve.