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OCR-A: Wikipedia



Written by Luc Devroye
McGill University
Montreal, Canada
lucdevroye@gmail.com
http://luc.devroye.org
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Quoting: The OCR-A font was developed by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) to be readable by the computers of the 1960s. The OCR-A font is still used commercially in payment advice forms so that a lockbox company can determine the account number and amount owed on a bill when processing a payment. A site license for the OCR-A font is very expensive, so someone undertook to create a free font. He started with the MetaFont definitions, used FontForge and potrace to construct a TrueType font, then assigned each glyph a Unicode code point. The shape of each glyph was defined by ANSI as described in their document ANSI X3.17-1977. Those shapes were coded in the MetaFont language as strokes by Tor Lillqvist and Richard B. Wales. Their work is in the .MF files under MetaFont Sources. The MetaFont program and the OCR font definitions are available as part of the TeX package from the CTAN archive. ANSI specifies a character spacing of between 0.09 and 0.18 inch. The American National Standards Institute makes the X3.17-1977 document available on their web site for a modest fee. Unfortunately the X3.17-1977 document can not be put here, for completeness, since ANSI has copyright on it.

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file name: O C R A Poster by Janet Chan Chen 2013



Luc Devroye ⦿ School of Computer Science ⦿ McGill University Montreal, Canada H3A 2K6 ⦿ lucdevroye@gmail.com ⦿ http://luc.devroye.org ⦿ http://luc.devroye.org/fonts.html