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Added more scanning information

Kenneth John Odle 3 years ago
  1. 43


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\author{Kenneth John Odle}
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\section{High School Computer Class}
\chapter{A Scanner Clearly, or More Thoughts on Being an Archivist}
In the first issue of this zine, I wrote about a basic workflow for archiving books through scanning them into pdf files. While I covered about everything I wanted to cover on the computer end of things, I barely talked at all about the physical labor that goes into scanning this book. For those who are interested, here's what happens behind the scenes before you even get to the computer.
First, you have to cut the book apart, and then separate the pages from the bindings. Older books are generally signature bound, and so it's simply a matter of cutting the backing off the signatures, cutting any strings holding them together, and then separating the signatures. This sounds easy, but it's a lot of work. If the book is perfect bound (i.e., individual pages are glued together, rather than signatures), it's just a matter of separating the pages very carefully a few pages at a time.
Second, you then have to trim the bound edges, so that the pages are separate. Perfectly bound books tend to have glue creeping up between each page, whereas signature bound books tend to have glue only creeping up between the signatures. I have paper trimmer that allows me to clamp the pages down so that they don't move as I cut them, and I highly recommend this. It also has a measured grid to the left, so that I can ensure I'm cutting all the pages to the same width. (\textbf{Protip:} Put a piece of painter's tape on the grid to make this even easier.)
After that, separate your pages into groups that you will scan. This should be however many sheets your scanner can handle easily at one time, and will depend largely on the kind of paper the book was printed on. I generally find ten sheets work well, and make it easier for me to count. Smaller groups means more work up front, but it also means that it is easier to fix things when (not \textit{if}) something goes wrong.
% \raisebox{0pt}[\dimexpr\height-1\baselineskip\relax]{\includegraphics[scale=0.4]{number_your_sections}}
Number all of your groups with the filename they will eventually have. I use a pencil and mark this lightly (or not so lightly, depending on the day) in the lower right corner of the first page:
This is all about workflow for me. Since my scanner (a Brother MFC-J8050DW) scans whatever is facing \textit{down} in the document feeder, after I scan the first side, I should see odd numbers facing up in the ADF. I then know that I need to scan the side that is now facing down, which means that I don't turn them over, I just rotate them 180\textdegree{} in the \textit{xy}-plane.
Most books have unnumbered pages. This should go without saying, but it's one of those things that you don't think about until after it becomes an issue: \textit{number all the blank pages:}
Once you do all of this, you're ready to scan. You should have a pile of stuff that looks something like this:
As it turns out, if you have a couple of pages that bleed to the middle\footnote{Generally because of a photograph or illustration that continues across both the left and right pages.}, you can pretend that they don't and simply trim those pages the same size as all your other pages. Or, if you want to preserve that bleed, you'll have to remove those sheets \textit{before} you trim the edges, and separate them very carefully down the middle. If you are lucky, they are in the middle of a signature, and you can separate them with a sharp knife. If you are not lucky, they will be somewhere else, and may have glue holding them together, meaning you have to very carefully prise them apart. No matter how carefully you do this, you will inevitably lose some data.
You will end up with two sheets (i.e., four pages) that are a different size, and which will need to be scanned separately. In which case, it's good to use a cheat sheet to keep track of which groups are which sizes and how many pages are contained in each. I like to just jot this down on an index card, but if the book you are scanning is complex, you'll need a bigger sheet of paper.
\chapter{What's to Like About Linux?}
\chapter{What Have I Installed?}