What is it?
Using Python and a Raspberry Pi plus three lines of code you can hack a picture or image and scrap all the text into the console window. The program uses OCR Optical Character Recognition, a technology that enables you to convert different types of documents, such as scanned paper documents, PDF files or images captured by a digital camera into editable and searchable data. This code uses images in a range of file types, jpeg and png.
1. Getting Started
This is a really easy hack which basically requires three lines of code and a couple of additional libraries. Firstly update your Raspberry Pi:
In the LX Terminal type:
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get upgrade
Then install Google's Tessaract OCR software by typing:
sudo apt-get install tesseract-ocr
(tesseract-ocr is a project Google have been working on full details are available here, it contains extra codes and developments)
Next install the Python Wrapper for the Tesseract-OCR software - this basically enables you to program the OCR using Python Code.
In the LX Terminal type using PIP:
sudo pip install pytesseract
The final part is to install the Python Imaging Library PIL
sudo apt-get install python-imaging
sudo apt-get install python-imaging-tk
Then reboot the Pi
Three Line Hack
2. The Code
Now download or create an image which contains text, the two below worked very well. I also tried a screen shot of a website and had about 70% success, there were some random characters and issues.
In the LX Terminal type
Open a new Python window and add the following code
Where test is the name of the picture you which to scan, I tried jpg and png and they both worked well. Save the program into the same folder as the pictures and hit F5 to run. It really is that simple!