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I've just wondered if there is a difference between symbol recognition, classification and identification.

What would you use when you have a hand-written symbol and you want to get the LaTeX code for it? Is that symbol classification, because you have about 1200 classes of LaTeX symbols? Or identification? Are some of those words synonyms? Which words are used more often?

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The way I've seen it used classification divides a data set into different groups (or classes), while symbol recognition means looking for a specific pattern and checking if it is present in the data or not.

If I understand correctly, what you are talking about is optical character recognition but instead of matching the symbol to an ASCII/unicode value you match it to a LATEX symbol. I think that this could be called both symbol recognition and identification.

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  • $\begingroup$ When I have a dataset with many characters the algorithm divides the data set into different groups (or classes) for each character (the symbols). So you suggest that when I check "is the symbol I currently have in front of me an 'A' " to call this recognition or identification, but when I ask "what symbol of the known 1200 symbols is it" to call it classification? $\endgroup$ – Martin Thoma Jun 4 '14 at 12:46
  • $\begingroup$ @moose classification would e.g. be to decide, if 'A' is a letter, digit, or special character. $\endgroup$ – FrankW Sep 4 '14 at 9:17

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