Help Me Digitize these clips
June 5, 2010 3:20 PM   Subscribe

How should I digitize/archive these clippings?

I have a file full of press clippings/photos of a band, the leader singer of which just died. I would like to have them all scanned/digitized etc, and burned to a CD that can be copied, and both given to folks who may want them just to look at, and others who will put them on the web in different sites.

Is there a best format/program for this? Are there any forks in the road I need to worry about?

I would like them to be clickable (to enlarge/save etc) etc for the web, and simple enough for a regular mook to read with minimum hassle.

Any help/pointers greatly appreciated
posted by timsteil to Computers & Internet (4 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
I'd scan them as PDFs. Even inexpensive scanners will generate these.
posted by zippy at 4:42 PM on June 5, 2010

Scan to PDF is great for journal articles (multiple pages) but leaves you with much less flexibility than a plain old jpeg, gif or tiff.

I've archived family photos and I've digitised historical documents.

I would use a regular flatbed scanner and do each page into an image file. If you wish to have PDFs, I would make these later (you can publish an OpenOffice document to PDF, even with images).

I would also make small paper labels that identified the full bibliographic reference for the source of the clipping; you lay the label beside the clipping you wish to scan, so that it's part of the finished image. That way you don't have mystery scans. You only need one per article -- you can use the file name of the image to code the page (eg. MUSICMAG2009_p2).

If you are worried about preserving a record of the images within you clippings, you could try to find one of those photographic colour cards to add to your scanning (which would be a record of true black, 50% grey, magenta, cyan, etc) -- but this might be overkill.
posted by jb at 7:43 AM on June 6, 2010

Oh -- and I would use the default scanning program that comes with the scanner, but not necessarily the default settings. Some are better for text, some for images --I would explore the settings and make a few practice scans. On my Epson scanner, the "Office" mode is best for pages of text, the "Professional" mode is best for photos. But I will still adjust within those settings to get the contrast I want, etc.
posted by jb at 7:46 AM on June 6, 2010

Using an image file to save them is the most flexible. I use PNG although JPG or TIF could also work. I use a filename that references the date, subject, and source. (20100606_First_Concert_Music_Zine.png)

This naming convention allows you to easily order files by oldest to newest and is easily searchable.

Keep the image size small enough but big enough to read.
posted by JJ86 at 10:28 AM on June 6, 2010

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