Smart decoder

Given the extraordinary number of handwritings that exist, it has proved extremely difficult for a computer to recognise handwritten script. Now, researchers at the State University of New York in Buffalo, US, have developed a system that can read upto 20 per cent of script addresses. This system, which is still in the pilot stage, has been installed at 34 locations of the United States Postal Service. The system works by first deciphering the zip codes of the letters and then checking the codes with a database for the street names, which are then matched to the handwriting ( Science , Vol 275, No 5301).