Chapter 1. Scanning with Gusto

In This Chapter

  • Understanding scanner technology

  • Shopping for a flatbed scanner

  • Acquiring an image

  • Rotating and cropping your scans

  • Converting and saving scanned images

  • Scanning guidelines to follow

  • Handling copyrighted material

A scanner might rank as one of the most versatile pieces of hardware that you can slap onto your PC. With an investment of anywhere from $75 to $400 (US), you can add the ability to copy and fax printed documents (with a modem and a printer, of course), create digital images from all sorts of materials, and even use optical character recognition (OCR) to read text from documents directly into your PC's word processing application.

What's inexpensive isn't always easy to use, however. You have to choose from different types of scanners that use different types of connections to your PC — and to produce the best results, you need at least an introduction to the basics of scanning. You also need the skinny on cleaning a scanner, deciding on an image format, and handling copyrighted material. In this chapter, I provide you with an introduction to the basics of scanning.

By the way, if you're planning to copy your face — or any other body part — you don't need to read this chapter. Just visit your local copy center or stay a little late at the office. (Oh, and be discreet.)

What Happens inside a Scanner?

I can't say that it's Party Central inside your scanner; in fact, most popular scanners now on the market have very few moving parts, so the ...

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