close this bookVolume 2: No. 28
View the documentNews -- politics
View the documentNews -- economy
View the documentNews -- graphics
View the documentNews -- computer industry
View the documentNews -- OCR; handwriting recognition
View the documentNews -- job opportunities
View the documentDiscussion -- software careers

FaxMaster is one of the hottest new products at PC Expo. The $249 Windows system (excluding fax modem) will capture a fax, extract text and graphics, and compress the result. Caere Corp. (Los Gatos, CA), (408) 395-7000. [Peter H. Lewis, NYT. SJM, 7/5.]

Text-retrieval company Verity Inc. (Mountain View, CA) has named Michael Kallet VP of software engineering and Clifford Reid EVP of advanced development. [SJM, 6/26.]

Dr. Dobbs Journal is organizing a handwriting recognition contest. (The prize is a Mac Powerbook). The "handprin" data files can be FTP'd from ftp.mv.com, but no instructions accompany them. [eletanjm@nuscc.nus.sg, comp.programming, 7/3. Bill Park.]

I've seen a demo of the Longhand writer-independent script recognizer from Lexicus (Palo Alto, CA). Its dictionary-based word recognition works pretty well, especially on longer words. The company is doing additional training so that initial capitals can be handled. (My kids contributed a bit of the training data.) CEO Ronjon Nag (ronjon@psych.stanford.edu) wouldn't discuss the recognition strategy, but says that he and his co-founder are trained in HMM speech recognition and other statistical pattern recognition tools. (415) 323-4771. Robert Blissmer reports that topological analysis and contextual analysis are used.

ParaGraph International (Boulder, CO), a Soviet-American venture, uses stroke analysis (with 30 basic strokes), trigram frequencies, and dictionary-based context analysis for its Calligrapher system. Shelija Guberman is the algorithm designer and director of product development. Other companies working on handwriting recognition include Communication Intelligence Corp. (CIC; Redwood Shores, CA), GeoWorks (Berkeley, CA), Nestor Inc. (Providence, RI), Slate Corp. (Scottsdale, AZ), and SRI International (Menlo Park, CA). Established products include GoWrite from Go Corp. (Foster City, CA), Penscribe from Microsoft Corp. (Redmond, WA), and PenRight from Grid Corp. (Fremont, CA). [Robert H. Blissmer, Computing 2000, EE Times, 5/18.]