Tuesday, September 4, 2007

Prego! Scanned!

It may not be the best book for learning Italian, but the Prego (6th Edition) is the book we are familiar with, so I scanned it. Yes, all 500+ pages are now a searchable OneNote notebook. (I don't want to carry the book on the trip but I'm committed to carrying a laptop so I might as well maximize what is on the laptop.) It was relatively easy to do. Here's how I did it.
  1. Grab a dozen or so pages (each chapter is about 12 pages and much more gets you into trouble on our scanner).
  2. Put them into the scanner (ours is a HP OfficeJet 7310 All-in-one) feeder.
  3. Scan to PDF (not searchable)
  4. Open PDF and print to OneNote. You should get a column of even or odd pages depending on what you started with.
  5. Take the stack of pages and keep the same order but flip each page so you get the other side of the page.
  6. Scan to PDF again and now you have a column of pages that are the companion pages to the previously scanned bunch.
  7. Print to OneNote again and arrange the newly imported pages alongside the previously imported ones (move the pages together, don't do it one by one).
  8. Repeat until the book is finished.

I used an X-acto knife to remove the sections of the book.

I am impressed with OneNote's ability to recognize words in the scans. It isn't perfect but it can usually get you to what you are looking for. Plus, if you want to, you can annotate the pages for better searching.

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