I have a raster image of a field of various size circles that I want as a vector file. The image is in high resolution and all of the circles are well defined as circles. None overlap.
Is there a way (program, plugin, etc.) to trace a bitmap image with a preset key shape? Put differently, I want to tell the program to only look for circles as it builds the vector version. The program would scan the bitmap file for anything it could recognize as a circle and only output circles.
I am interested in circles (I am trying to convert a halftone photo into a vector file) but other people might find other shapes useful.
Potrace seems to do this with polygons (not circles)
It seems ArcGIS might allow this
AutoTrace seems to give a lot of control in the vectorizing process but not this
OCR programs can recognize circles but cannot replace them with proportional vector images.
I am working with thousands of dots, hand tracing is not an option
I saw another question on this site about trying to do something similar in Illustrator. I now cannot find the question. A person commented that Illustrator does not have shape recognition capabilities. I am not restricting my search to Illustrator.
Update: a messy workaround
In Illustrator if I use a small enough section of the image, Illustrator is able to trace all the dots, though not as circles. I then expand the appearance and select all the shapes. I use Effects > Convert to Shape > Ellipse. This does not guarantee circles, but does give ellipses. The output ellipses are much larger than the input circles and I need to judge how much to shrink them all.