In computing, an image scanner—often abbreviated to just scanner— is a device that optically scans images, printed text, handwriting, or an object, and converts it to a digital image which is stored on your computer. Common examples found in homes are variations of the desktop (or flatbed) scanner where the document is placed on a glass window for scanning.
Most scanners offer OCR: Document Scanning & Optical Character Recognition. Document scanning is one way to store print documents digitally. This involves scanning text and then turning “pictures” of words into editable text using a scanner and OCR software. This editable text can be stored on your computer as a word processing ready file so that you can use MS Word or other software to make changes to it. If you have a printed document that you want to be able to edit and store on your computer, scanning it with OCR will allow you to avoid keying it into your computer.
Other uses for your scanner are: digitizing photos that you have around the house so that you can store them on your computer; storing important family documents for safe-keeping and backup, such as your will, birth certificates, deeds, etc.; and it’s a convenient way to fax, email or print copies of printed documents. You can save valuable storage space in your home by scanning documents onto removable digital storage such as a CD, DVD, or flash drive.
So start a list of things you’d like to do with your scanner and computer that will improve your life and home. And let me know how you may already be using your scanner, through a comment to this post. We all learn from each other when our views and opinions are shared.
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Remember, home computing is a blast…keep it productive and enjoyable.