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Abstract

Luis A. Leiva, Verónica Romero, Alejandro H. Toselli, Enrique Vidal. Evaluating an Interactive-Predictive Paradigm on Handwriting Transcription: A Case Study and Lessons Learned. Proceedings of the 35th Annual IEEE Computer Software and Applications Conference (COMPSAC), 2011. pp. 610-617.

Transcribing handwritten text is a laborious task which currently is carried out manually. As the accuracy of automatic handwritten text recognizers improves, post-editing the output of these recognizers could be foreseen as a possible alternative. Alas, the state-of-the-art technology is not suitable to perform this kind of work, since current approaches are not accurate enough and the process is usually both inefficient and uncomfortable for the user. As alternative, an interactive-predictive paradigm has gained recently an increasing popularity, mainly due to promising empirical results that estimate considerable reductions of user effort. In order to assess whether these empirical results can lead indeed to actual benefits, we developed a working prototype and conducted a field study remotely.Thirteen regular computer users tested two different transcription engines through the above-mentioned prototype. We observed that the interactive-predictive version allowed to transcribe better (less errors and fewer iterations to achieve a high-quality output) in comparison to the manual engine. Additionally, participants ranked higher such an interactive-predictive system in a usability questionnaire. We describe the evaluation methodology and discuss our preliminary results.While acknowledging the known limitations of our experimentation, we conclude that the interactive-predictive paradigm is an efficient approach for transcribing handwritten text.