Word search by similarity of shapes

This is not an OCR. No character recognition is performed. Thus, the method is applicable to any type of document (Latin manuscript, Semitic, hieroglyphs, cuneiform, etc.).

Caution. Contrary to general practice, the results we provide are not pre-calculated: you can search any word in any document! Thus, the response time is not instantaneous. Please do not lose patience and do not run several searches simultaneously. To avoid congestion of the server, all research for more than 5 minutes is dropped automatically.

Query modalities

It is possible to examine a picture of three ways:

  1. by selecting an instance of the word to search,
  2. by drawing the word to search (not available on this web page),
  3. or by typing the word to search on the keyboard (requires prior construction of a model of writing).
1. Word-spotting 2. Sketch spotting 3. Word retrieval

How to use this online demonstration?

Choose one of the following documents or download an image of your choice. Icons are displayed next to the pictures to indicate the available query modalities.

The results are displayed in descending order of similarity. A view of the image is displayed with colors coded from green (most similar) to red (least similar).

Select a document

Public images



Private images

Other operations