Today my robot read its first words with its own eyes! from around 8ft away!
Got Tesseract OCR going on the bot. Its reading words close up and from distance with large fonts. This will be the start of my indoor localization system. Bot will be able to determine what room it is in and where it is within the room to some degree, by remembering what is written where in the house and using it as landmarks for knowing its position, with a little geometry.
I'll post some video of this in action as soon as its polished.