Book Scanning

booksscanner.jpgPictured 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!

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4 Comments

  1. Posted 11/28/2003 at 4:11 pm | Permalink

    so would gathering the out of copyright materials in the u.s. well, if you have a very masochistic sense of ‘fun’ hehehehe

  2. Posted 11/29/2003 at 11:58 am | Permalink

    Leaving aside the “books just want to be free” argument that seems to send people over the edge, I can definitely see digitizing my own library to give me a full-text search functionality.

    Really, one of the reasons the machine is so expensive is that the demand curve is fairly inelastic. It’s not like a move to $20K would mean thousands more sales. Really, it’s going to be academic libraries doing preservation at some well-funded schools, a few companies with large, decades-long bureaucracies, and (most likely) companies that specialize in digitizing books for various clients.

  3. preetesh
    Posted 2/10/2005 at 3:22 pm | Permalink

    i want to know mechanism of ur constrution of page turner

  4. Posted 2/11/2005 at 5:50 pm | Permalink

    I suppose your car is made out of tinker toys. The Kirtas technology offers about a 4-month ROI to serious users. It uses state-of-the-art robotics and a 16MB camera for unsurpassed digital image quality and postprocessing at 1200 per hour.

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