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In this paper, we present a new text line extraction method for handwritten Arabic documents. The proposed technique is based on a generalized adaptive local connectivity map (ALCM) using a steerable directional filter. The algorithm is designed to solve the particularly complex problems seen in handwritten documents such as fluctuating, touching or crossing text lines. The proposed algorithm consists of three steps. Firstly, a steerable filter is used to probe and determine foregrounddoi:10.1109/icdar.2009.79 dblp:conf/icdar/ShiSG09 fatcat:wysbtgfabrhjdhnde22bxh2bxq