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Platform for page turner

  1. Jul 31, 2007 #1
    I am designing a book scanner (I will be using a digital camera), and I need some advice for constructing a platform that will properly support large books. Through much research I have determined that a V-shaped cradle will be the best platform since this will tend to reduce the curvature of a book. However, this will still have to deal with the problem of curvature as I move towards the center of the book. The pages that have been turned will tend to pull on the spine altering its position so the spine is not resting on a flat surface but is at an angle because of the V-shaped cradle. I'm wondering if I left a gap at the bottom of the cradle if this could allow the spine more flexibility. My attached diagram illustrates this. However I must develop some alternative support to hold the spine. What are some methods I could use that would provide support that is flexible? One possibility that I considered is to have a bag filled with small, soft, rubberlike balls.
     

    Attached Files:

  2. jcsd
  3. Jul 31, 2007 #2

    DaveC426913

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    You sure you have permission to copy these books? Just checking.
     
  4. Jul 31, 2007 #3
    I personally think you should be able to copy books...assuming you took them out a a library or something and don't plan on selling copies, I consider it "extended borrowing." Anyways, the site http://www.geocities.jp/takascience/lego/fabs_en.html
    has a pretty good book scanner, except it looks like his platform may not be wide enough to support the book. Like you said, curvature towards the spine makes problems, I think if you had some kind of square bracket that could be adjusted for slightly less than the size of the book's page you would be able to have the bracket push the page back towards the cover, making it flatter. Then if you get the camera aligned straight it might not blur the words.
     
  5. Aug 1, 2007 #4

    Danger

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    How about you just use a couple of sliding 'leaves' as the base angle, so that you can telescope them to accommodate different thicknesses of book? (Sort of like how old-fashioned roller skates or expandable dining tables work.)
     
  6. Aug 1, 2007 #5

    DaveC426913

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    OK, well assuming you do have the appropriate permissions...

    My contribution: I suggest you turn the book over, use glass plates and put your camera underneath. This will allow the book's weight to press the pages flat - and I suspect will solve a host of other problems to do with the changing shape of the book.


    Question: Is the page turner supposed to be mechanically automated? i.e. it doesn't need your input? Because that'll make a lot of difference in all the designs.
     
  7. Aug 1, 2007 #6
    I do intend this to be fully robotic. I had considered having the book face down, but I thought it would be too complicated to have a mechanism that would lift the book up in order to turn the next page.

    By the way, the reason I'm doing this is because I'm physically unable to turn pages, and the Chafee amendment allows disabled individuals to have legal digital copies of print media.
     
  8. Aug 1, 2007 #7

    Danger

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    Dave has already mentioned what will probably be your biggest hurdle—keeping the pages flat enough for a good image without damaging the spine of the book. I've had tonnes of trouble trying to do that with a regular photocopier. The page curvature, even if everthing is visible, distorts the image. I have an off-the-top-of-my-head solution to that, but I'm not sure that it will work.
    Give me a while to think on it, and I'll throw you a sketch.
     
  9. Aug 1, 2007 #8
    I would greatly appreciate that.
     
  10. Aug 2, 2007 #9

    Q_Goest

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    I wonder if you couldn't simply manipulate the page electronically so that you take the picture and you have this curvature problem, then electronically manipulate it to eliminate any distortion. Perhaps you can work off the lines that define the top and bottom of the page, or any obvious lines that cross the page such as a sentance.

    There are systems that take a scanned image and convert it to a text file, so I have to believe it would be possible to scan a distorted page and manipulate it electronically.
     
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