Research Article Open Access

Novel Moment Features Extraction for Recognizing Handwritten Arabic Letters

Gheith Abandah and Nasser Anssari


Problem statement: Offline recognition of handwritten Arabic text awaits accurate recognition solutions. Most of the Arabic letters have secondary components that are important in recognizing these letters. However these components have large writing variations. We targeted enhancing the feature extraction stage in recognizing handwritten Arabic text. Approach: In this study, we proposed a novel feature extraction approach of handwritten Arabic letters. Pre-segmented letters were first partitioned into main body and secondary components. Then moment features were extracted from the whole letter as well as from the main body and the secondary components. Using multi-objective genetic algorithm, efficient feature subsets were selected. Finally, various feature subsets were evaluated according to their classification error using an SVM classifier. Results: The proposed approach improved the classification error in all cases studied. For example, the improvements of 20-feature subsets of normalized central moments and Zernike moments were 15 and 10%, respectively. Conclusion/Recommendations: Extracting and selecting statistical features from handwritten Arabic letters, their main bodies and their secondary components provided feature subsets that give higher recognition accuracies compared to the subsets of the whole letters alone.

Journal of Computer Science
Volume 5 No. 3, 2009, 226-232


Submitted On: 3 April 2009 Published On: 31 March 2009

How to Cite: Abandah, G. & Anssari, N. (2009). Novel Moment Features Extraction for Recognizing Handwritten Arabic Letters. Journal of Computer Science, 5(3), 226-232.

  • 33 Citations



  • Normalized central moments
  • Zernike moments
  • feature extraction
  • feature selection
  • handwritten Arabic letters