Digitizing Old Newspapers (PCC)

As announced earlier, Bob Leedom sent me a big box with ther first 36 issues of Peoples Computer Company Newsletters. Today I want to talk about the process of digitizing these.

The PCC have a format that does not allow them to be scanned with my flatbed scanner. Despite the size, the paper has a near rotten quality and is dissolving. It was never meant to last 50 years I guess.

So I set up a booth with a black backgroung, a LED lighting and a Canon EOS M-100 for taking pictures, page by page. I also need to cover the paper always with a glass pane as PCC was folded twice when being sent 1972-1976.

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After taking pictures with identical light, exposure time and aperture, a software called Booksoerber is used to complete the process of cuttung and optimizing the light.

The result is huge. Each PDF has the size of ~100 MB. Right now I have to decide how far I want to 'optimize' the quality. Option one: The original yellow paper (more orange meanwhile) Option two: A white balanced black and white version, that looks nothing like the original. Option three: both (chosen!.)

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The next question is wether the PDF's should be OCR'ed. This takes nearly one houre on my old PC for one document and the results are, well, not really exact.

I've started uploading the newspapers to archive.org. soon there will be boatloads of new issues: https://archive.org/details/@netzherpes