User-assisted alignment of Arabic historical manuscripts

Abedelkadir Asi, Irina Rabaev, Klara Kedem, Jihad El-Sana

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionpeer-review

6 Scopus citations


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.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationHIP'11 - Proceedings of the 2011 Workshop on Historical Document Imaging and Processing
Number of pages7
StatePublished - 25 Oct 2011
Event1st International Workshop on Historical Document Imaging and Processing, HIP'11, Held in Conjunction with ICDAR 2011 - Beijing, China
Duration: 16 Sep 201117 Sep 2011

Publication series

NameACM International Conference Proceeding Series


Conference1st International Workshop on Historical Document Imaging and Processing, HIP'11, Held in Conjunction with ICDAR 2011


  • handwritten manuscript alignment
  • historical manuscript
  • keyword searching
  • keyword spotting

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Software
  • Human-Computer Interaction
  • Computer Vision and Pattern Recognition
  • Computer Networks and Communications


Dive into the research topics of 'User-assisted alignment of Arabic historical manuscripts'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this