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Offline Arabic Handwriting Recognition System Based on the Combination of Multiple Semi-Continuous HMMs

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In this paper, we present a multi-classifier approach for off-line handwritten Arabic word recognition system. The main objective of this paper is to develop a handwriting recognition system that can be learned and applied to different Arabic writing styles. We propose an approach that combines multiple classifiers based on semi-continuous Hidden Markov Model using different feature extraction methods. The following process consists of several phases: pre-processing, extraction of pertinent characteristics and modeling. The role of the pre-processing phase is to prepare the input image text, i.e, binarization, normalization, segmentation and skeletonization. The obtained images are then used to extract features using a mixture of geometrical and statistical characteristics, namely, the intensities of gray level of the pixel, the densities and the concavities of the pixels, the VH2D projections and the invariants Hu moments. The modeling phase is based on the Hidden Markov Model using the HTK tools for the training and the recognition phase. Each character is modeled by a semi-continuous HMMs, and each set of feature has its own HMM. To improve the performance of our Arabic handwriting recognition system, we propose to combine parallel methods of HMMs having the same architecture, but training phase using four different types of primitive vectors. Our system was evaluated using the ENIT/IFN the base Arabic data. Results Obtained show that the combination of four semi-continuous HMM classifiers gives a significant improvement of our off-line handwriting recognition system compared to results obtained when using individual classifiers.
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Off-line Recognition of Arabic Handwriting; Sliding Windows; the Moments Invariant of Hu; VH2D Approach; HMMTK Hidden Markov Model Tools; Combining Classifiers

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