Project Naptha is a browser extension developed by Kevin Kwok which allows you to copy, translate, erase and even modify text from images online using optical character recognition technology. It recognises text within images, enabling you to copy and paste any text directly from that image – no more manual retyping into Google!

With the add-on installed, you can simply highlight the text in an image and right-click to edit, erase or translate the text. The edit and erase functions use what is called ‘inpainting’, a similar concept to ‘content-aware fill’ used in Adobe Photoshop, which cleverly fills areas where text was previously. But before you get the idea that you will have the ability to make permanent changes to your favourite websites, changes you make will disappear when the page is refreshed.

The tool is still being developed so there are still changes being made, such as the matter of text remnants being left behind after text has been erased, as well as errors in text when copied and pasted. It is also limited to text that has been rotated by no more than 30 degrees – so there’s no hope of copying vertical text at this stage.

But, how is it useful? Well, it makes it quicker and easier to copy text from images you may wish to refer to, such as addresses that have been embedded within an image, models and of course the ability to translate text into another language could be handy too. It is currently only available for Google Chrome, but is being developed for use in other browsers, so we’ll be keeping our eyes peeled!

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