Thin Paper

‘Everyone I knows buys the Almanack,’ said Granny. ‘I reckon everyone in Lancre buys your Almanack. Everyone in the whole Ramtops buys the Almanack, even the dwarfs. That’s a lot of half dollars. And Gytha’s book seems to be doing very well.’
‘Well, of course, I’m glad it’s so popular, but what with distribution, paying the peddlers, the wear and tear on-‘
‘Your Almanack will last a household all winter, with care,’ said Granny. ‘Providing no one’s ill and the paper’s nice and thin.’
‘My son Jason buys two copies,’ said Nanny. ‘Of course, he’s got a big family. The privy door never stops swinging’
“Maskerade” by Terry Pratchett

I’m currently scanning an about 2000 pages book. “Currently scanning”, because it takes longer than expected. I really love books that come in cheap quality paper, not only because I have less qualms about cutting them, but also because scanning is a breeze. But if there ever was a thing that prevents people from scanning books it’s thin paper (worst copy protection ever!

Seriously, it’s the first time I ever had to use Scotch tape multiple times, because the scanner tore a page apart. It’s hymnbook style thin paper, hell, even Bible style thin paper. I switched to scanning the pages with the broad side first (as one commenter on this blog suggested), but still, pages got torn apart.

On the other hand, I’m currently on page 1480 of (about) 2000, so I’m going to finish this. At the moment, I’m reminded of two things. The first one is the feeling that I will have this book available without DRM restrictions (i.e. I want the freedom to actually work with the text I have bought) — I will have it available. The other thing is an image I saw a long time ago, of an anteater who says “Fuck you I’m an anteater”. Thing is, I make progress with every paper I scan and Adobe Acrobat … doesn’t care that much even if it merges 100 pages bundles or 2000 single pages into one document. I’m currently feeding pages one at a time (feeding them continuously in the paper feed and being frequently beaten by the speed of the scanner) — and while it takes longer, it’s still fricking fast (like written, too fast to keep up with feeding the pages one at the time).

So yeah, while it is frustrating the end result will be nice — and as for the atrocity of scanning books — I recently stumbled upon these nice words by one of the best authors of the 20th/21st century:

Have fun 🙂

Update: Finished it, now I only need to rotate some pages, delete rescans and do the OCR …

Update 2: Corrected some spelling mistakes and improved clarity.