Re: CONFUSED! Adobe Reader XI seems to do OCR automatically?


 

I'll jump in here hoping that what I add will make some sense since the participants so far clearly have a good grasp of the last two releases of Adobe Reader and the OCR capabilities of JAWS.

Since many of the PDF files that my clients use are of fairly substantial page count, and they need to be referenced again and again, having to do OCR processing more than once can really slow their lives down.  I do not know of any version of Adobe Reader (the free versions) that has any built in OCR capability.  This is why I have introduced them to PDF-XChange Viewer (this link is the direct download link for the ZIP file used to install that software).  While it does not consistently "play well" with JAWS in all respects, it is simple to use the built in OCR scanning function to take a PDF that was originally scanned as an image file, create a text layer from the images, and save it back to the original PDF file as a unit.  Then you can open it as many times as you like in the future without needing to go through any OCR process again.  Since I know that JAWS is written to "play well" with specific programs I encourage them to use Adobe Reader to actually do their reading of the PDF files that they do OCR processing on and save with PDF-XChange Viewer.

What follows are the step-by-step instructions that I give to my clients who need to have the capability to do permanent OCR on PDFs they'll be referring to repeatedly with PDF-XChange Viewer:

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PDF-XChange Viewer

Used when you receive a PDF that was originally scanned without Optical Character Recognition.  For reading stick to Adobe Reader.

1.     Open PDF-XChange Viewer from your start menu or desktop, wherever you chose to create the shortcut(s).

2.     ALT+F, O  Open a file, you’ll need to know where it is and navigate there in the Open Dialog, which is very much like Windows Explorer.

3.     CTRL+SHIFT+C  Perform optical character recognition on the file.  This will be quick for small files, 20 pages or less, but will take some time for very large files, hundreds of pages.  Listen for the process to complete.

4.     ALT+F, S  Save the file over itself with the OCR text now included.  If you wish to save the file under a different name and keep the original use ALT+F, A Save As to do this instead.


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Brian

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