OCR History

As the information on paper documents is very valuable, but it is also very costly. Because information cannot be used as long as it is on paper. Experts are looking for remedies to this problem, nearly 100 years. Let’s have a look at the history of OCR in other words optical character recognition.


Before OCR, the first device that could read the information on the paper when filled with a special pen was an optical reader. Its name was not optical mark reader (OMR) those years. Because they developed it to read the answers on the test forms. So they called it as IBM 850 Test scoring machine. The IBM 805 Test Scoring Machine was a machine of IBM beginning in 1937. The device scored answer sheets marked with special “mark sense” pencils. Reynold Johnson developed the machine from a prototype. He was a school teacher who later became an IBM engineer. That machine and its descendants have been in use ever since.

Barcodes & QR Codes

As an integral part of OCR, a barcode is an optical, machine-readable, representation of data. This data usually describes something about the object that carries the barcode. Originally barcodes systematically represent data by varying the widths and spacings of parallel lines. Firstly they were linear or one-dimensional (1D). Later they developed two-dimensional (2D) codes. They used rectangles, dots, hexagons, and other geometric patterns in two dimensions.  Special optical scanners called barcode readers scanned barcodes. Later applications software became available for smartphones that could read images with cameras. Barcodes and QR codes have always been a partner with OCR all time.

Early use of one type of barcode in an industrial context was sponsored by the Association of American Railroads. It was in the late 1960s. Currently, users implement barcodes as the fastest and most reliable automatic information reading mechanism.

Text Based Capture, OCR & ICR

The use of scanners and fax machines was widespreaded in the 1980s. Then data capture technologies have become more accessible. Advanced softwares such as ICR engines that can read handwritten texts were developed. Also OCR software that recognizes optical characters developed. They have started to produce very successful results. Data entry and data capture systems are now stepping up the new and modern pace with the help of OCR. CaptureFast was born in this age. CaptureFast has contributed to the industry with intelligent sensing technologies.

Mobile Capture

The scanners still offer a technology that is stuck between the two dimensions. With smartphones, the third dimension came. It is likely that the analog processing will reach to an end by mobile capture technology. It will change the way the world does business already. CaptureFast is one of the leading companies in the new era.

Try mobile document capture today with CaptureFast. It is best in class Document Capture Solution. Request a demo now!