I rifled through "the Crate" the other day to see if I had any cowboy-related tunes to look at. I certainly do! Aren't these fantastic! :-)
I'm pretty new to Smartphones. I used to have a Windows 7 phone, but that doesn't really count: you can't do a great deal with Windows 7 smartphones. I've now got an iPhone and my eyes have been opened to the possibilities of these little devices. I didn't want it, but now I've got it, I'm a convert. The power of the iPhone is in the Apps you can get for it.
If you've got me circled on Google+ then you'll know that I've been trialing some scanning apps recently. Genius Scan and CamScanner are the best two that I've come across. They're much of a muchness. They allow you to take photos of things like pictures in books, TV screens, letters, sheet music, etc. and to stretch the perspective to turn them into rectangular images. Once processed, you can then turn them into pdfs and upload to somewhere like Google Drive to enjoy elsewhere.
In terms of features and look and feel, there's not much to separate them. I reckon CamScanner wins on usability (it has brilliant image selection), but Genius Scanner probably wins on quality of image and pdf options (it's a close call). Both unfortunately don't really cut the mustard - the final pdfs are huge! They're both obviously reprocessing the images rather than to wrap them up in a simple pdf container.
In the picture above I'm showing you both apps as I scan the front of the same sheet music. You can see that they've both tried to guess the dimensions of the page with a view to then stretching this out square. Genius Scan guessed wrong, but I have the ability to reposition the selection using the handles. I find that Genius Scan tends to get it wrong, though to be fair in this little trial, I think I gave it a harder picture to work with. CamScanner guessed right, but if I had got it wrong, it's repositioning handles have smarts that would have made it all so much easier to fix on the little iPhone screen.
Notice the sheet music? It's "The Man From Laramie" by Ned Washington. Hear Jimmy Young's version of the song below. To my ear he sounds like a bit of a cross between Elvis Presley and Morrissey. What do you reckon?
Earlier this week +Martin Nutbeem brought my attention to a nifty little DIY rig that allows you to do macro photography using your smartphone. You can read more about this interesting project on PetaPixel. I started wondering whether a larger rig might allow me to take pictures of sheet music.
A quick Google uncovered this ScanDock for iPhone that looks like it might be the sort of thing that I'd need. It's made out of cardboard. I could make one myself! Nice!
And how about this one? The Scanbox started life as a Kickstarter project. You place your camera on the top and take pictures of the inside through a hole. The Scanbox Plus even has LED lighting. Nice!
Here's my special King Uke Scanning Contraption inspired by what I'd seen above. This has been made out of an old wooden dolls house that was gathering dust in my garage. I've pieced it together in a slightly different arrangement to what the designer intended. It's appears to be a pretty good size for sheet music! See on the top that I've found another use for my clever router jig! Yay!
Before I close off, I just want to call out a nifty little program called JPEG to PDF you can download that does what it says on the tin. The key things to note is that it doesn't reprocess the images and if you you use the "Match Image Size + Margins" option, you can create pdfs without any annoying borders.
There you have it... another small avenue covered. I'd love a quicker, easier solution, but at the moment I can't think of what else I can try. Better keep thinking... ;-)