Scanning old manuals

From: Brian Mahoney <>
Date: Tue Mar 9 21:06:46 1999

Let's look at this two ways. Scanning the manuals using OmniPage Pro would take care
of the text, keeping it in the same columns as before and making storage of the
resulting text extremely easy. OmniPage Pro is expensive but there are ways around
that. It is also the best I have used and virtually perfect in its OCR cabability
plus it will keep columns together. If the manuals are old and deteriorating, scan
them at high resolution but there shouldn't be any need to go higher than 300 dpi. I
have never scanned anything at more than 300 dpi. I think for the web, anything over
72dpi is unnecessary.

The second issue is the diagrams. In order to make them legible you have to scan them
in high resolution. Assuming these are only in black and white, this would take some
trial and error to get things just right but, from my experience with manuals, there
aren't a whole lot of diagrams anyway. The non-detailed images could be dithered to
make file size smaller, detailed images would seem to be the only memory hog here. A
suggestion would be to cruise around the IBM site. They have fairly detailed
diagrams, motherboard schematics etc. on site and you could see what size those images
are simply by saving them to your computer. From my experience, any web master would
be please to give you information on how they got their images from their origins to
where they are now.

PDF format makes sense but I seem to recall Acrobat isn't exactly free. Other
suggestions would be html, which is simple to set up and easy to navigate once set up
and, arguably, more universal than PDF. Alternatively, Word or Wordperfect format
should be around for awhile or RTF. Personally I would choose html, as it is
cross-platform should you wish to make these documents available to others.

Here is a link to a page that I discovered recently, please note I have no affiliation
with this site but it is very useful:

And another with some tips on dpi:

Brian Mahoney's 2 cents

Links to my new Computer Collecting column at Suite101
and my Computer Collecting site at Geocities:
Received on Tue Mar 09 1999 - 21:06:46 GMT

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