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SmilinVamp

android (Archived) Page Camera - Hand writing not searchable, why?

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Hi there,

 

I hope this isn't covered elsewhere, I did a search and couldn't find much. 

 

Do you need a Moleskine Notebook to make hand written notes searchable?

 

I wrote a note, shot it with the page camera and it's just an image... nothing on the note seemed to come up in a search.  Why?

 

Thanks!

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Hi - welcome to the forums.  How long between photograph and search?  -and- How legible is the handwriting?  Evernote needs a little while to OCR the picture,  and written OCR is a little different from document OCR - 'house' might look like horse,  hearse or mouse...

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Hi - welcome to the forums.  How long between photograph and search?  -and- How legible is the handwriting?  Evernote needs a little while to OCR the picture,  and written OCR is a little different from document OCR - 'house' might look like horse,  hearse or mouse...

 

 

Hi, thanks!

 

Hmm... seems to be my impatience may be to blame here.  Silly me thought maybe this was an instant thing... I should know better.   Perhaps I shall try again and wait a while, see what happens.

 

 

Thanks for your help.

-Richard

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I noticed I can search almost immediately on the Android device that I used to take the photo, but that my Windows machine cannot make the same search (minutes and still waiting). I'm assuming the search function works cross-platform?

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I noticed I can search almost immediately on the Android device that I used to take the photo, but that my Windows machine cannot make the same search (minutes and still waiting). I'm assuming the search function works cross-platform?

 

Has your android device synced with the server,  and has your windows device also synced?  That has to happen (and in that order) before the note is even present on the windows device..

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Hmmm, I've still not been able to get this to work.  Strange...

 

More info:  I am using a Samsung Galaxy II (Canadian (international) Version)... My Evernote is up to date as far as I know 5.0.3.

 

Maybe I'll try taking a picture of a printed note next, seems hand writing isn't working for me.

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Has your phone synced at all?  The server does the heavy lifting in OCR,  so you need to get the note to the server,  and give it a while to do the necessary and updated the local index.

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The new Page Camera feature still does not work for me at all.   I have the Evernote Moleskine and it just won't apply any processing, just takes the picture like normal.  It worked ONE time, on a single page among multiple, so I know what it is supposed to look like and I know that the software is capable of it, but I have tried numerous times and just doesn't work.  And, I have the same problem, the search may find 20% of the searched words.

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So... this make no sense... being a bit of a programmer myself, but...

 

...it seems that if I follow these steps:

 

1.) Open Evernote

2.) Create a new note

3.) Tap the camera icon

4.) Tap the page camera icon

5.) Take a picture

6.) Save the note

 

... it all seems to work fine!!

 

I have tried now several times... even with messy printing to printed text.

 

If I go about this any other way, it doesn't work.  Odd... but I'm happy with the result.

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I finally got it to be searchable on another machine, but just synchronizing does not ensure an image is searchable. The OCR takes quite a bit of time to do it's thing. Pages will synchronize LONG before they are searchable.

I guess the advantage is that the OCR does seem fairly powerful and accurate, and that the process takes no CPU cycles away from the mobile device. The downside is - waiting for the servers.

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I finally got it to be searchable on another machine, but just synchronizing does not ensure an image is searchable. The OCR takes quite a bit of time to do it's thing. Pages will synchronize LONG before they are searchable.

I guess the advantage is that the OCR does seem fairly powerful and accurate, and that the process takes no CPU cycles away from the mobile device. The downside is - waiting for the servers.

 

Premium users get priority with OCR,  and the processing time varies depending on the current queues.  Maybe I could have been a bit more explicit about the process above,  but I don't remember any claims anywhere that it was especially quick...

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I am a Premium Subscriber.

 

Page Camera with OCR + Search is a relatively new Evernote feature so I expect some early glitches. But I sense this is one area where OneNote may have an advantage given the years they've had working with tablets and refining their OCR. I was an early adopter of tablet computing 5-6 years ago, but the hardware wasn't very elegant. Now it is (potentially).

 

OneNote uses local processing for OCR so that search is faster. As a business user, my top 2 features for any note taking tool are:  1) ability to input using handwriting, and 2) making that hand written content reliably searchable. Speed is important for me because I can test (and therefore gain confidence in) the ability for the tool to recognize my handwriting. 

 

The Galaxy Note 2 can do OCR on the fly with either Evernote or OneNote, and it's pretty impressive, but it can't do mixed media and page layout the same way as with LiveScribe or Smart Notebooks (interspersing graphics with text on a page, and having the text be searchable). The potentially ideal solution is something like OneNote + Microsoft Surface Pro or Lenovo Helix. 

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So, I am going on a few days now using the page camera in my Galaxy 2 Phone, and my Galaxy tab 2.  Both seem to be doing the trick quite well now.  I am not sure what my original issue was... it just didn't work the first few times, and now it does.

 

As far as I can see it is pretty fast too.  I am just a regular Evernote user... and even my messy hand written chicken scratch is being transcribed very nicely.  I am impressed!

 

 

Thank you gazumped for all your helpful input!  

 

(this can only get better   :)   )

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Here's an interesting experiment to measure the effectiveness of the Evernote OCR capability:

 

1. Write on a test page, with distinct keywords interspersed.  

2. Write some of the keywords rotated +90 degrees and -90 degrees.

3. Then use them in a sentence.

4. Use Page Camera to take a photo, sync it with Evernote, and then begin to make searches.

 

- The first thing you'll notice is the search occurs in real time as you type.

- The second thing you may notice is that some of the keywords are found and others are not.

- The third thing you may notice is that searches can find even ROTATED text

- The fourth thing you may notice is that the search IMPROVES WITH TIME but the more content (e.g., more pages and more text per page) the slower the improvement and the more misses and false positives

- Finally, you may notice that the more search characters you type, the worse the search accuracy gets. For me, false positives are not as annoying as outright misses.

 

I have pretty darned good penmanship - so your mileage may vary.  OneNote also can do OCR on any photo/image, although the integration of this capability isn't as seamless as Evernote. I'll experiment with the same images on OneNote. Also, OneNote search capability still isn't there on Android (or if it's there I can't find it) so that may be the showstopper for me unless I move to a mobile Windows platform.

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