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#30551 - 07/14/14 04:27 PM OCR to convert .tiff to .doc or docx
JoBoy Offline


Registered: 08/05/09
Somewhere on my Mac Pro I have used an application that contains an OCR function to convert a .tiff document to .doc or .docx. It has been so long since I've done it that I can't remember where it is. I have the Adobe Creative Suite CS4. it's old but it does the job for me just fine. i also have the Microsoft Office 2008 collection. I thought it was on Photoshop, but I can't find it there. Any suggestions?
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#30554 - 07/15/14 04:32 AM Re: OCR to convert .tiff to .doc or docx [Re: JoBoy]
ryck Online


Registered: 08/04/09
Loc: Okanagan Valley
Is it included with your printer software? I have a Canon that came with software that does OCR. It's not as good as a dedicated OCR program but, with the limited OCR I need to do and the help of a spell checker, it gets the job done.

I haven't used it for a while but, as I recall, it didn't convert directly to any writing software. It created a text file that could then be popped into Word or whatever.


Edited by ryck (07/15/14 04:36 AM)
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ryck

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#30555 - 07/15/14 09:03 AM Re: OCR to convert .tiff to .doc or docx [Re: ryck]
JoBoy Offline


Registered: 08/05/09
Thanks for the reply. My printer is an HP LaserJet 4200n. However, I see no reference to OCR associated with it. I had a stand-alone OCR app before OS X came on the scene and it was superb, but it did not carry over to OS X.

I'd be grateful for a text file. That would be all I need.
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Mac Pro dual Quad-Core Intel Xeons Early 2008; 16GB RAM; MacOS X 10.11.6, iOS 9.3.5

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#30556 - 07/15/14 09:52 AM Re: OCR to convert .tiff to .doc or docx [Re: JoBoy]
grelber Offline


Registered: 08/05/09
Loc: North of 49th ||
It seems to me that you should be able to import a .tiff file directly into Word, view it and manipulate it there, much like a PDF file.
(But then I've never seen a TIFF file. If there's one easily accessible on the Web, I could check it out, play with it a bit, and see what I come up/out with.)

Every PDF file that I've come across (but especially those with text, such as journal articles) allows me to highlight passages and then cut and paste them into a Word document. That should work with a TIFF file which is tantamount to the same thing (from what I can gather).

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#30557 - 07/15/14 10:59 AM Re: OCR to convert .tiff to .doc or docx [Re: grelber]
JoBoy Offline


Registered: 08/05/09
Thank you for the suggestion. I tried it and it definitely did not work. A .tiff document is a picture just the same as one that I get when I take a picture with my digital camera. There is no text involved. The text I'm looking for results from using an Optical Character Reader (OCR) that has been programmed to interpret an image into text. As I mentioned above, I had a stand alone OCR before OS X, but I don't have one now. I still believe that there is one somewhere on my current machine, but it has been so long since I used it that I can't remember where it is located. Spotlight doesn't help, so I'm wondering if it has disappeared with an application that I have discontinued.
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#30564 - 07/15/14 05:52 PM Re: OCR to convert .tiff to .doc or docx [Re: JoBoy]
joemikeb Online
Moderator

Registered: 08/04/09
Loc: Fort Worth, Texas
There are a number of OCR applications in the App store but I have not found any that begin with a Tiff, jpeg, etc image. Instead they all start with a PDF. However, Adobe Acrobat, PDF Pen, PDF Pen Pro, Evernote and several others will work from a PDF image and all of them can with some degree of success, convert the OCRed output into some Word compatible output. Often requiring a substantial bit of editing to get the format close to correct.

You might start by using Graphic Converter 9 to convert the Tiff to PDF and yarn using one of the aforementioned applications OCR the resulting PDF file. If you have the printed image and a scanner, Graphic Converter can drive the scanner and go direct to PDF. Evernote can drive the scanner to drive the document and go directly to OCR PDF text.
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#30568 - 07/15/14 08:44 PM Re: OCR to convert .tiff to .doc or docx [Re: joemikeb]
JoBoy Offline


Registered: 08/05/09
Thanks for the info. I have Adobe Actrobat Pro and have no problem converting .tiff to PDF. I'm more concerned about getting a good result from a PDF file into text. Do you have a favorite? If you're uncomfortable endorsing a specific product, never mind. I'll check them out.
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#30574 - 07/16/14 08:15 AM Re: OCR to convert .tiff to .doc or docx [Re: JoBoy]
joemikeb Online
Moderator

Registered: 08/04/09
Loc: Fort Worth, Texas
If you have Adobe Acrobat Pro why not use its builtin OCR capability? Certainly you paid enough for it. Quite honestly since I got Evernote most of my work goes through it and I have found its OCR to be very reliable and accurate. The software that came with my Fujitso Scansnap scanner also has a very satisfactory OCR capability. Although I do not use it often, it is simply easier and more direct to use other tools, PDF Pen has good OCR capability.

There all sorts of applications with builtin OCR ability but often the trick is finding out where it is hidden the menus.

You can find the instructions for using Acrobat OCR here.


Edited by joemikeb (07/16/14 08:26 AM)
Edit Reason: link added
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#30590 - 07/17/14 03:42 PM Re: OCR to convert .tiff to .doc or docx [Re: joemikeb]
JoBoy Offline


Registered: 08/05/09
Thank you for your very helpful post. With great enthusiasm, I carefully followed the instructions for Acrobat OCR. I converted the PDF document to MS Word.doc. The result was an MS Word document in proper layout, but there were strange lines enclosing every sentence and paragraph. I could not select and modify words or sentences. I also tried .rtf and .txt, but these did not even yield any text. It was just a blank page for both of them. Assuming the directions were error-free, I conclude that my version of Acrobat Pro is too old to accomplish the purpose of the instructions. At the very beginning, the instructions say I should click the blue Tools button in the top right of the toolbar. There is no such thing on my version of Acrobat 9.5.5. Instead, I start by going to Document>OCR Text Recognition>Recognize Text Using OCR. I'm afraid I can't get it done. Unless you have an Ace up your sleeve that I can borrow, I'll have to look for an OCR app on the App Store. Best regards. It's always good to hear from you. I hope you healed completely from your brush with the doctors.
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#30662 - 07/24/14 12:03 PM Re: OCR to convert .tiff to .doc or docx [Re: JoBoy]
grelber Offline


Registered: 08/05/09
Loc: North of 49th ||
Just out of curiosity ...
If you're running MacOS X 10.8.5, have you tried Preview to convert file formats (by opening the file and then choosing File → Export)?

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#30664 - 07/24/14 03:15 PM Re: OCR to convert .tiff to .doc or docx [Re: grelber]
JoBoy Offline


Registered: 08/05/09
I just tried it. There is no OCR function available as far as I could determine. It will change a PDF to other image formats, but not to a text format.
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#30665 - 07/24/14 05:10 PM Re: OCR to convert .tiff to .doc or docx [Re: JoBoy]
grelber Offline


Registered: 08/05/09
Loc: North of 49th ||
I must be missing something salient in this discussion. I was under the impression that you had a TIFF file which you wanted to convert to some other format so that you could perform OCR on text which formed part of the file. If you can convert your TIFF file to PDF (via Preview, for example) then you should be able to grab (highlight) the text portion and then cut-and-paste it into a Word document and manipulate it from there. (I do the latter all the time, as I've pointed out.)

So, what am I misconstruing?

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#30666 - 07/24/14 05:39 PM Re: OCR to convert .tiff to .doc or docx [Re: grelber]
JoBoy Offline


Registered: 08/05/09
I want to change an entire document from .tiff to text. I have Acrobat Pro 9.5.5 that has a built-in OCR function, but it is apparently too old to properly create a useable text document. (See item #30590 - 07/17/14 05:42 PM sent to joemikeb in this thread.) Acrobat Pro has already converted the .tiff to PDF.

I then decided that I needed to buy a stand-alone OCR app from the Apple Store, but I have not yet done so.

Since I already have the document in a PDF file, all I need is an OCR app to do the job so I can then copy and paste it into MSWord.

I looked at Preview to see if it had an OCR function, but I did not see one. If there is one there, I'd love to know where in Preview it is located.

I hope this clears up what I perceive my need to be. Thanks for your patience.
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Mac Pro dual Quad-Core Intel Xeons Early 2008; 16GB RAM; MacOS X 10.11.6, iOS 9.3.5

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#30668 - 07/24/14 10:06 PM Re: OCR to convert .tiff to .doc or docx [Re: JoBoy]
artie505 Online


Registered: 08/04/09
I'm running Snowy, and I'll take a look to see what I can see if you are able to link me to a .tiff similar to the one you want to work with.
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#30669 - 07/25/14 01:23 AM Re: OCR to convert .tiff to .doc or docx [Re: artie505]
grelber Offline


Registered: 08/05/09
Loc: North of 49th ||
Same for me – re TIFF example.
I still don't understand the problem (since an OCR app isn't required to do what you seem to want to do). So I'd like to fiddle around with a specific example too.

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#30670 - 07/25/14 06:39 AM Re: OCR to convert .tiff to .doc or docx [Re: JoBoy]
joemikeb Online
Moderator

Registered: 08/04/09
Loc: Fort Worth, Texas
Originally Posted By: JoBoy
I want to change an entire document from .tiff to text. I have Acrobat Pro 9.5.5 that has a built-in OCR function, but it is apparently too old to properly create a useable text document. (See item #30590 - 07/17/14 05:42 PM sent to joemikeb in this thread.) Acrobat Pro has already converted the .tiff to PDF.

I then decided that I needed to buy a stand-alone OCR app from the Apple Store, but I have not yet done so.

Since I already have the document in a PDF file, all I need is an OCR app to do the job so I can then copy and paste it into MSWord.

I looked at Preview to see if it had an OCR function, but I did not see one. If there is one there, I'd love to know where in Preview it is located.

I hope this clears up what I perceive my need to be. Thanks for your patience.

In other words you need selectable, searchable, and editable text, not a graphic image of the text. Correct?

No matter what image format, tiff, jpeg, PDF, etc. you are working from it will have to be OCRed to make it searchable, selectable, and editable. I got to thinking that the very accurate OCR feature in Evernote is performed remotely on the Evernote servers so I did a Google search for "online OCR" and came up with a number of hits for FREE online OCR services. Admittedly I have not tried any of them but at FREE the price seems right. Among the services I found are:
That should be enough to provide a reasonable cross section of the available online OCR tools. Hope this helps
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#30671 - 07/25/14 07:07 AM Re: OCR to convert .tiff to .doc or docx [Re: joemikeb]
grelber Offline


Registered: 08/05/09
Loc: North of 49th ||
Originally Posted By: joemikeb
Originally Posted By: JoBoy
I want to change an entire document from .tiff to text. ...

Since I already have the document in a PDF file, all I need is an OCR app to do the job so I can then copy and paste it into MSWord.

In other words you need selectable, searchable, and editable text, not a graphic image of the text. Correct?

No matter what image format, tiff, jpeg, PDF, etc, you are working from it will have to be OCRed to make it searchable, selectable, and editable.


To my mind this makes no sense.
A PDF file (essentially a photograph) is selectable, searchable and editable via Preview and Adobe Reader inter alia.
Why would it need to be OCRed when it's already manipulable?

I'm getting a surreal feeling of being in a Monty Python sketch or a Dilbert cartoon.

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#30675 - 07/25/14 08:21 AM Re: OCR to convert .tiff to .doc or docx [Re: joemikeb]
JoBoy Offline


Registered: 08/05/09
Thank you. It is very helpful. However, price is not the key issue. My work involves privileged or confidential information and I am very hesitant to run the info through an online service not knowing what may be done with it. I haven't purchased a free standing OCR yet because the need went away. I did a work-around that was sufficient for that situation. It wasn't perfect, but it was good enough. I'll follow up on your recommendations when I get a little time to give them a good look. Again, thanks.
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Mac Pro dual Quad-Core Intel Xeons Early 2008; 16GB RAM; MacOS X 10.11.6, iOS 9.3.5

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#30676 - 07/25/14 08:49 AM Re: OCR to convert .tiff to .doc or docx [Re: grelber]
JoBoy Offline


Registered: 08/05/09
Being manipulable and being completely and conveniently selectable, searchable and editable are two different things. I need to go from a graphic image to something with Word's capabilities.
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Mac Pro dual Quad-Core Intel Xeons Early 2008; 16GB RAM; MacOS X 10.11.6, iOS 9.3.5

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#30678 - 07/25/14 09:09 AM Re: OCR to convert .tiff to .doc or docx [Re: grelber]
alternaut Offline

Moderator

Registered: 08/04/09
Originally Posted By: grelber
To my mind this makes no sense.
A PDF file (essentially a photograph) is selectable, searchable and editable via Preview and Adobe Reader inter alia.
Why would it need to be OCRed when it's already manipulable?

To begin with your final exhortation: because it isn't already manipulable. Elaborating on Joboy's previous post: it seems to me that you may have missed the following: PDFs may contain both text and images. Depending on the PDF(author)'s settings, you may select and copy those elements. JoBoy is referring to image elements which depict text, but can only be selected and copied as image. It's those text images he'd like to convert to editable text.
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#30680 - 07/25/14 10:20 AM Re: OCR to convert .tiff to .doc or docx [Re: alternaut]
grelber Offline


Registered: 08/05/09
Loc: North of 49th ||
Originally Posted By: alternaut
To begin with your final exhortation: because it isn't already manipulable. Elaborating on Joboy's previous post: it seems to me that you may have missed the following: PDFs may contain both text and images. Depending on the PDF(author)'s settings, you may select and copy those elements. JoBoy is referring to image elements which depict text, but can only be selected and copied as image. It's those text images he'd like to convert to editable text.

OK, now I get it. Merci.

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#30681 - 07/25/14 03:39 PM Re: OCR to convert .tiff to .doc or docx [Re: JoBoy]
tacit Offline


Registered: 08/03/09
Loc: Portland, Oregon, USA
Acrobat 9 should absolutely be able to do OCR; that capability has existed in Acrobat for a really long time. I remember doing it in Acrobat 6, if memory serves.
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#30682 - 07/25/14 04:38 PM Re: OCR to convert .tiff to .doc or docx [Re: tacit]
grelber Offline


Registered: 08/05/09
Loc: North of 49th ||
In Acrobat 10 (and probably 9):
Open document.
Bring View menu down and select Tools, under which select Recognize Text. Alternatively, just select Tools in the Acrobat toolbar.
That should open a Tools sidebar on the right under which OCR manipulations can be carried out.

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#30683 - 07/25/14 07:35 PM Re: OCR to convert .tiff to .doc or docx [Re: grelber]
JoBoy Offline


Registered: 08/05/09
The OCR function is under Document on Acrobat Pro 9.5.5. I found no reference to OCR under the View menu and also under Tools. Recognize Text also could not be found.

I really appreciate your desire to be of help, but I have decided to just get a stand alone OCR app and let it go at that. Again, thanks for the effort. By the way, I am using old software because it suits my purposes. When it fails to do that, I'll move up, but I don't grab the latest and greatest every time a new offering appears. I notice a lot of us on this forum tend to do that. If you're using Acrobat 10, then you know what I mean. Best regards.
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#30684 - 07/25/14 07:48 PM Re: OCR to convert .tiff to .doc or docx [Re: tacit]
JoBoy Offline


Registered: 08/05/09
I know it SHOULD, but it just won't do what it's supposed to do. I could reinstall the app, but that is a very tedious thing with Adobe CS4. I don't have the steam to try it. Thanks for the encouragement, but it isn't worth the effort for the few times that I really need OCR.
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