Customer stories

ABBYY FineReader Helps Resources for the Blind in the Philippines to Produce Braille Textbooks for Blind Students

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“Thank you so much for your gifting us ABBYY FineReader Corporate Edition for 4 workstations. This is a tremendous help to us in producing Braille textbooks for blind students here in the Philippines.” 

Randy Weisser,

Director, Resources for the Blind

Background

There are about 2000 blind students around the Philippines who need their school textbooks in a format they can read. Braille* textbooks are the key to blind student’s successful integration into a regular school. With Braille textbooks, a blind child has access to all the same information that the sighted students have. This way the blind students are enrolled in schools with sighted students.

Resources for the Blind (RBI) is a non-government Christian organization serving blind people all over the Philippines since 1988. It has a staff of 50 blindness specialists in Manila, Davao and Cebu offices. RBI produces Braille books and distributes them nationwide. Along with it, RBI also conducts many projects: Bible College for the Blind, Integrated Education, Livelihood Programs, Summer Camps for the Blind, Computer Training, Employment Training.

Problem

Approximately 5000 volumes of textbooks are sent out each year to students around the country. As many as half million of text pages are converted to electronic view by RBI annually, and the volume keeps on increasing because of the continually changing students’ curriculum. Most of RBI’s staff time is spent in encoding new textbooks into the computer and preparing them for further brailling. As such, the manual key-in appeared not only the most time-consuming process but it also created problems with typing errors and low productivity.

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Solution

RBI turned to ABBYY for the alternative to manual key-in. ABBYY’s Business Development Manager in the Philippines, Abelardo Manubay, helped RBI by gifting ABBYY’s software solution that automates their routine of paper books encoding.

ABBYY FineReader is Optical Character Recognition (OCR) software that converts scanned pages of books, magazines, newspapers, and much more images into their searchable and editable electronic copies, such as for example Microsoft Word files. ABBYY FineReader is generally recognized as an ideal OCR software application for users who demand the highest level of data accuracy and text layout retention. Besides, it delivers the most user-friendly interface and wide range of time-saving features.

Results

By scanning the print textbooks and subsequent OCR with ABBYY FineReader, RBI can now easily convert paper pages into editable electronic format for further conversion to Braille or audio format. ABBYY FineReader OCR software proved for RBI to be the optimal alternative to manual data entry and retyping by saving a lot of RBI’s staff time and efforts when creating various documents.

* A Braille is a form of written language for the blind, in which characters are represented by patterns of raised dots that are felt with the fingertips.

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About Resources for the Blind (RBI)

RBI is a non-profit Christian organization serving blind people all over the Philippines since 1988. RBI now provides a full spectrum of services to blind people nationwide. It has devoted itself to removing the obstacles and providing the services, trainings, materials, and equipment needed for blind people to reach their fullest potential in life. For more information, please visit http://www.blind.org.ph/