Tag Archives: ocr

The Productive Scholar: Tools for Transcription

Topic: Tools for Transcription
Speaker: Ben Johnston, Senior Educational Technologist and Manager, Humanities Resource Center (HRC), OIT

Time: Thursday, November 14, 12:00PM
Location: HRC Classroom, Room 012 East Pyne, Lower Level

Digitizing the spoken and written word can be a very time-consuming but necessary part of doing research in the digital age. In this session we’ll discuss the features to look for in tools for transcribing audio, video, and textual sources, and about the tools commonly used used for this work. From dictation software to multi-lingual OCR, to software for doing time-encoded transcription of audio and video and cloud services for crowd-sourced transcription of books and manuscripts, this session aims to make the arduous task of transcription a little easier.

Ben Johnston is Senior Educational Technologist and Manager at OIT’s Humanities Resource Center (HRC) in East Pyne, and Consultant for the Digital Humanities Initiative (DHI). Ben has been involved with educational technology for over thirteen years in positions at Columbia University, Bryn Mawr College, and Princeton University. While at Princeton, Ben has worked with educators and researchers across the Humanities and Social Sciences to facilitate the use of digital assets, technology tools, databases, and digital video in teaching and research.

Download the presentation slides (.pptx)

Free Online OCR (Optical Character Recognition) Tool: Free OCR


OCR stands for (Optical Character Recognition). What OCR does is that it takes a document like a pdf or an image that has text in it and converts it into a form where you can edit the text. This tool can read different files types, PDF, JPG, GIF, TIFF or BMP and it displays text that you can copy and paste and edit into a text document. You can also upload documents in different langauges (English, German, French, Dutch, Italian, and Spanish for now). There are some limitations to the program. It can not read upside down text like a good ORC program that comes with a scanner can read and translates correctly. There is also a 2MB limit for the file size you can upload for each document.  If you are interested in learning more, click on the link below: