Learning about PDF – what is renderable text

03 / 4 / 2021

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If you’ve created a document with a computer then you’ve already encountered the term “renderable text.” In some companies, submitting completed work with renderable text is required. But what exactly is renderable text and what does it do for our lives?

By definition, renderable text is the content of the text that is editable, searchable, and recognized by the computer. It is machine-readable meaning that the text is seen by the computer as characters and not just dots on the screen that make up an image. When you create a document from common applications like Word, Excel, or PowerPoint and export it to PDF, the content that the PDF has is considered “renderable.”

renderable text

In other terms, you can also consider this as “searchable text” which basically means that you can find words or phrases within the document when you use the search feature. You won’t need to manually read everything to find a keyword, you can just click CTRL+F and enter the word. You can read more about searchable PDF here: What is searchable PDF?

Scanned images and documents aren’t all renderable text because to achieve this output on a scanned file, you need to process it with an OCR tool.

What is an OCR tool?

OCR is an abbreviation that spells out Optical Character Recognition. This is a tool available in Adobe and in online third-party applications that can convert scanned documents, and image-based files into recognizable text and allow the computer to recognize the content as words and characters. If OCR is not used on a scanned file, the computer is limited to content that looks like dots – plenty of dots that make up an image on your computer. Read more about it here: How to make scanned files readable and searchable?

OCR tool

Can DeftPDF make renderable text?

Yes, of course! Without the OCR tool online, you can convert your images and scanned files into renderable text files – providing you with two output options. First is the PDF files with searchable content and the second is the .txt file that contains text-only content, which can be opened with applications like notepad. Once you’ve converted your document with our OCR tool, you will be able to get a fully editable copy of the file in PDF format or text format.

OCR tool makes renderable readable text

Can a photograph of a handwritten message into renderable text?

OCR tools will try and recognize letters, numbers, and characters according to its program however since this is still software implemented by a machine, its talents are limited to a certain degree which therefore does not provide a completely perfect output. In some cases, handwritten letters and documents can be converted and successfully reads content. However, if the handwriting is too blurry or scripted, the OCR tool may have difficulty trying to convert it.

handwritten text

What is an OCR suspect?

In another term used when content cannot be recognized by the OCR tool. It may be a “suspect” that it was not recognized correctly or not recognized at all. This is caused by the resolution or clarity of the original material. Whatever the quality of the original affects the output.



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