Pictured to the left is the Kirtas APT Bookscan 1200. The “1200” refers to the number of pages it can scan in an hour. Automatic page turners and book scanners have been a longheld interest of mine. Check out their site and watch the demo video. The process itself seems like one that is simple to create, but very difficult to master. Elsewhere, it has been suggested that such a machine costs in the range of $150,000. That’s a lot of mastery.
It also inspires a certain Erector Set-perspective. A sucker and a fluffer could be put together with some tubing and a few case fans; the turner could be jury-rigged with some stepper motors and a track; all that is left is a mirror and a 3-4 megapixel camera. 1200 pages an hour is probably over-ambitious, but a tenth of that might not be. Besides, building it would be half the fun!