User-assisted alignment of Arabic historical manuscripts Conference Paper uri icon


  • This work aims to simplify the tiresome manual comparison of two similar Arabic historical manuscripts. We developed a system that determines the difference between two manuscripts by comparing their components, while ignoring page breaks and different warping among consecutive rows; i.e., we treat each manuscript as one long row of components. We compare two components (blocks of pixels) by extracting features from the columns of their bounding rectangles. We adopted the edit distance, which is computed using dynamic time warping (DTW) on the feature domain, to measure similarity between components. The user selects the region to align in two manuscripts and the system return its alignment with visual clues that indicate the distance between the aligned components. In our current implementation, our system provides good results and requires less interaction for manuscripts at good quality that do not include touching components. We tested our system on different Arabic manuscripts of various qualities and received encouraging results.

publication date

  • September 16, 2011