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Nuance released a new version of their PDF Converter software (version 6). This new version includes the ability to tag documents for accessibility. It is very similar in feature and appearance to the Adobe Acrobat Professional product line.

There appear to be key differences:

Benefits:

  1. The OCR quality is very good (like Acrobat it is somewhat slow)
  2. One can modify the OCR text by using the text touch-up tool. The text can be copied it to a text editor, corrected, and then pasted back into the document. One can also see the text change as you type it in the tag panel. For scanned documents it does not affect the visual scanned page – only text used for the tags tree and for searching.
  3. The PDF Converter Software is snappy.

Potential Drawbacks:

  1. There is no table inspector for tagging tables
  2. There is no feature to “find a tag in tree from a selection” in the document.
  3. The internal automatic tag feature sometimes does not detect tables and tag the properly (that may have to be done manually). Several documents were tested and sometimes this worked and sometimes it did not.
  4. There does not appear to be an accessibility report tool

At this point, PDF Converter Professional 6 looks very useful in preparing documents that need OCR especially those where OCR errors exist. However, Adobe Acrobat Professional is still needed for tagging documents that have complex tables. Most of the tagging related features and screens look very similar if not virtually the same as Adobe Acrobat Professional. Similar keystrokes and names are used for tagging related options. Users of Acrobat will be familiar the PDF Converter Pro — thus the learning curve for this new product should be minimal.