The Grizzly Den

Knowledge is Power

Archive for May, 2009

Fall in Love with OCR Terminal

Posted by grizzlymedia on May 1, 2009

OCR Terminal: Free Online OCR – Convert PDF to word, jpeg to word, scanned images to editable text via kwout

I just have to tell you about what is probably my favorite Web 2.0 tool yet, thanks to Lisa Nocita, a library media specialist in Kansas. And if you ever need to convert PDF files to .doc files aka Word documents or .rtf files, you are going to thank your lucky stars that you are my friend and that I was the one who introduced you to OCR Terminal. And I am about to save you the $449.00 you would have to pay for Adobe Acrobat 9 Pro that you may only need occasionally to convert the odd file, when all you need to do is highlight it or work with it more easily. Now if you are doing a lot of work with PDF files, then by all means, go ahead and buy Acrobat 9 Pro, it is a great product with many more capabilities, but if you are like me, just going to graduate school, needing to read a paper you’ve saved, want to be able to highlight a few points for your own use, maybe cut and paste the important parts to a new file (note: don’t steal other people’s work; remember we’re talking about using this for citation purposes, not plagiarizing!) or delete the stuff you know you won’t use, then OCR Terminal is perfect, and it even looks good in most instances. You can even convert scanned files to text easily with OCR Terminal. You can convert up to 30 pages a day for free, so I guess if you’re busy one day, you may have to wait until the next day to convert all of your files. Actually, I don’t think they notice if you log out and login again that you’re doing over 30 pages a day. I think it is actually 30 pages per login. You may also be thinking to yourself, “How can I convert my files to PDF format for free?” Well, you can use CutePDF to do that. You have to download the software, but it is free. It acts like it is one of your printers, but it isn’t, obviously. When you select it as the printer, all it does is convert the selected document to a PDF file. You can also do this with Zamzar, and supposedly Zamzar goes both ways–PDF to .doc and vice versa, but I did not have good results being able to work with my file once I converted it from PDF to .doc or .rtf. So my advice would be to stick with OCR Terminal for that. And if you just can’t think of anything else to do with your $449, email me and I’ll send you my address so you can send me a check. 🙂

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