Joaquim Rocha
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OCRFeeder Repository Relocation and Maemo Preview

  • avatar
    Joaquim Rocha
  • Principal Software Engineering Manager at Microsoft

It’s been a while since I wrote my last post but I guess this one will compensate.

When I posted about how I made OCRFeeder run in Fremantle I said I wasn’t thinking of porting the application but in later talks with some people, it was clear that OCRFeeder might come in handy for some people. One of the use cases that we have talked about was to be able to create a contact in the address book by recognizing the contact fields from a business card.

So, for some days in these last weeks, I’ve been porting OCRFeeder to Fremantle! (The card-to-contact feature is still to come as I wanted to have OCRFeeder “fremantelized” before)

New Respository

I had been using git-svn to develop OCRFeeder and while this was okay when there was just a branch (trunk), with the Maemo version it was clear that Google Code’s SVN repository wasn’t enough. (Yes, I know they have mercurial but I’m git user) So, yesterday I relocated OCRFeeder’s development to Gitorious where you’ll find the branch “maemo” besides the “master” one:

Development Notes

I must say that although I had for a long time used PyGTK for my UI code, on Hildon, I am more experienced in using C. While from the theory part this is the same, on the practical side, the PyMaemo bindings had some issues that delayed the development a bit (mainly undocumented functions that differ from the direct and expected usage, as well as some bugs I found). I must thank Lizardo and other PyMaemo folks who were kind enough to help me every time I bugged them with questions and suggestions.

I think OCRFeeder for Maemo represents another example of how a desktop targetted application can be ported to Fremantle, specially from the design point of view. The chats I had with my friend and colleague Felipe (who, by the way, has just become a Master degree student in a in User-Centered Interactive Technologies) surelly helped in this matter.

Trying OCRFeeder for Maemo

Now, you can try to use OCRFeeder but you’ll have to first compile and install pygoocanvas and Tesseract or another OCR engine like I wrote here. I hope I have time to create deb packages for both pygoocanvas and Tesseract as they’re also very useful apps to have.

As a final note, I must say that although everything was working fine on Maemo 5.0 SDK beta 2, today the final SDK was released and I tested OCRFeeder on it… and not everything works well as before. The problems are mainly related to GtkTreeViews (Hildon style) which, from the C side seem to be working okay, but from the PyMaemo side seems not to obey the selection mode I assign to it.

Some Eye Candy…

OCRFeeder for Maemo preview from Joaquim Rocha on Vimeo.

[Preferences dialog][5]
Preferences dialog
[Recognized page][6]
Recognized page