Patty Goes Geeky

A techno odyssey

When you don’t know what you’re doing, everything takes so much time

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Gordon gave me a bunch of family documents, which I wanted to scan. I fired up the scanner, opened my downloaded CanoScan Toolbox, got a settings message and started guessing at the right options. BMP was the default on “Save as Type:” so I went with it for 7 or 8 documents, instead of TIFF, my other option. I was scanning along pretty cock-a-hoop until the writing on my birth certificate came up too light to read. On an office copy machine, you just adjust the darkness so I figured there must be a way to do that either on the scanner (apparently nope) or on the computer. All I could find to change was the DPI so I played with that to not much avail, and I started to wonder whether ramping up the DPI a lot would also eat up a lot of storage. And I remembered from my previous life at The Times that photos were JPEGs and people talked about TIFFs, so I started to wonder whether I should be using those if my goal was to have shareable material.

My fast Internet research was not conclusive, and I was impatient, so I figured screw it, I’ll ask my I.T. guy (in this case, John). Here’s his response:

“JPEG almost always. Tiff is okay in a pinch.

“BMP blows goats.

“The BIG problem with Jpeg, every time you edit and save, the picture loses some detail, and gets blotchier. So… don’t edit and save the original, duh. Every time you edit a jpeg, save it AS… something else.jpeg. Problem solved.

“As a matter of course, every time I’m editing any photo, Jpeg, Raw, Tiff, whatever, the first thing I ALWAYS do is save it under a new name.”

A very helpful answer. (I believe “blows goats” must be a technical term for “overall, does not produce satisfactory results.”)

I’ll delete and rescan my documents as the new type so everything will be consistent.

Scanning looks like it will be very time-consuming, indeed, even once I get through this slow learning curve. I think I will do it while watching TV, or knitting, or something else productive. Given that Gordon also passed along ANOTHER batch of photos, I still may be scanning family photos well into my dotage.

p.s. No, I did not defeat Misfit. The error message is back, Misfit’s tech-support person e-mailed more instructions which I followed and am now awaiting a reply, and I got an enormous batch of new updates that probably added even more things that need to be uninstalled. Two of the updates maybe related to what I’m doing with The Nagging Entity’s OGA instructions and were marked “failed.” What I don’t know is whether that’s a good thing or a bad thing. I may still be trying to solve Misfit’s problems well into my dotage, too.


Written by geekypatty

November 18, 2009 at 11:43 am

Posted in Misc Tech

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