neatworks - devonthink - and limited OCR?

Can you compare Neatworks Neat Receipts software with Devonthink Office Pro?I have tried both but I haven’t discovered all the “tricks” of using each to their best ability.

Regarding Neatworks, I like the sharpness and speed of the Neatworks scans, and I like the recognition of receipts, versus documents, versus contacts. I also like the initial attempt at filling in the standard data for each file into the corresponding template (contact, receipt, or document). It also has smart files which collect documents based on key words.

However, the document templates don’t fill very accurately under real usage. I also don’t like the difficulty of finding the scanned files in a normal pdf format, rather than a Neatworks database format. (If anyone knows where the actual pdf files are stored, please let me know). Another problem was that one of the databases got hung up and it was nearly impossible to get the documents out of it before it would crash so I had to get documents out one at a time… no fun! The search features on Neatworks work well, but they are not as strong as those in Devonthink, because they do not employ the ability to make suggestions of docs that have similarities.

On Devonthink, I like the use of AI to suggest documents, this is a really strong feature and probably the main reason I like it. I wish it had the automatic ability to identify receipts, contacts, versus documents, and to fill in basic template information from contacts and from receipts. I also find the sharpness of the Devonthink scans to be noticeably less crisp than the Neatworks scans.

I am using a S510M Scansnap with an iMac.

I have not purchased Devonthink yet, since there is so much beta testing going on, but I would like to know how to transfer files from the Neatworks libraries, which have their own extension, to Devonthink, so I can use the more powerful search capabilities. I would also like to know whether the 20 OCR per day limit during the beta is 20 pages/day or 20 OCRs/day(without regard to the # of pages scanned?) 20 OCR is not enough to really discover if you like a product, and it is also not enough for me since I need to scan hundreds per day. Any chance of getting more pages per day until the Beta Stage is over (or farther along)?

In the meantime I’ve been scanning them into Neatworks, but I’m concerned I won’t be able to transfer them to Devonthink… since they are in the Neatworks library. I’d rather just start scanning directly to Devonthink…

Oh, if I wanted to use both neatworks and devonthink, what would be the best way to set up a routine so that one scan would activate bothg? I want to set it up so that each scan uses neatworks to classify the type of document, and fill in the basic template info, and the same scan would also get into the devonthink library for powerful searches. Is there a way to set it up so that it all happens automated each time I scan a doc, so that I won’t have to go dragging and dropping files, and getting confused over which file I dragged and which one’s I didn’t - its a nightmare to try, futile IMHO…

Back to the scan limit, why limit it during a beta test? If we fall in love with the product, (and or find we simply need it), and scan everything in using devonthink, do you realistically believe your real “buyers” ie, your “real” customers, are going to forgo buying the software after they used it to scan everything in, or are going to buy it once they are convinced the beta stage is nearing completion? Why bother scanning 20 documents in with a software you won’t have a month from now, it makes no sense, so your real serious customer is the one who is asking for unlimited scanning rights during the beta testing stages. Could you see the logic in treating us all to a full copy of the beta - no daily scan limits - so we can really use it daily and give you some real feedback? It sure would be a nice gesture.

Cheers to a nice application!


That’s interesting. What PDF viewer are you using to evaluate sharpness? I haven’t had a chance to post about this new development yet, but folks in my studio have noticed a remarkable improvement in sharpness over the past few weeks when viewing PDFs using the new Adobe 9 series (Acrobat Professional 9 and Adobe Reader 9) over PDF viewers that use Apple’s PDFKit, which probably include Preview and Skim.

Other advantages to using the new Adobe Reader with DevonThink Pro Office 2.0b3 include the ability to preset and maintain the zoom level with different documents, and a Pan and Zoom Window that makes it fast and easy to find dates on tiny receipts.

Despite the improved sharpness and added features, there are disadvantages. It isn’t as easy to clipboard-copy text from one application to another. And in my copy of Reader 9, the Preferences window doesn’t open (I understand that Adobe is working on this issue).

Im using acrobat version 8.1.3

My real question, however, is to get feedback from others who have tried both neatworks software and devonthink software. I’d like to know what others have found out about the two side by side.

Thanks for the tip on the version 9 of Acrobat.