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Old 10-17-2011, 09:57 AM   #91
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I was going to join the subscription until I read a little more closely -- I was thinking it was $100 for 100 sets. Not 50 sets. I agree that book titling and OCRing is not useful for me -- I'm converting the scans into epub with FineReader anyway.

They did contact me -- and a few others, I think -- about why I was sending them 300 books in one month. They were curious about the use case and I told them about library conversion. I guess they took from that that $3 a book for making the book title the name of the PDF was added value. I would say more research is needed on their part.
They're probably astounded out how big the demand is. Suspicious even; there's gotta be a catch! So, they're looking at their Canon Imagerunner high-speed document scanner and thinking, 'Damn, I need 10 more of these!'.
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Old 10-20-2011, 10:56 PM   #92
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I agree that book titling and OCRing is not useful for me -- I'm converting the scans into epub with FineReader anyway.
Ana,
Thanks for sharing your experiences. I really like the idea of converting some of my older/favorite titles.

I hope you don't mind some additional questions?

You're using "ABBYY FineReader 11 Professional Edition"? Does it work on an entire image-only PDF file that you got from 1dollarscan, or did you need to break it up some into smaller chunks? After that, you manually proof it? How long does that typically take? And then you convert it to ebook format?

I was debating waiting for their "Amazon kindle3 (Coming Soon)" to actually happen, but I was starting to think that even when they do that, from a practical standpoint, it would probably still be in image form with an unproofed text layer added on. In which case that's probably not what I'm looking for. (I don't want a bunch of massive image files & I also want something that I can easily convert to other/newer formats as ebook readers evolve.)

Thanks for being the pioneer!
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Old 11-22-2011, 11:23 AM   #93
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Soooo...

I got my second batch of scans from 1dollarscan. The first batch was ordered before they implemented their new website and new pricing policy; the second was after.

In the first batch, I was able to download one HUGE zipped file that when unzipped contained individual .pdf files for each of my books. The files had cryptic names, but WTH, it's not to hard to rename a file.

Sadly, in the second batch, there appears to be no single zipped file with all of the scans. Instead the new web interface appears to make me download each of my 27 books individually - still with cryptic names since I'm not willing to double the cost of the scans just to avoid having to change it myself! This is sort of a pain in the neck, especially since the downloads are a couple of hundred MB each, so they take some time. And, I can't imagine if I had sent even more books, although it's still less effort than scanning myself.

I have e-mailed them to ask if there is a way to get a single zipped file for the whole order, and will update here if/when I get a reply. I also am wondering if I am missing something obvious - if anyone here knows how to get a single zipped file from their new web interface, PLEASE post the info!

There is also a possibly interesting option called "Fine Tune" now offered for free - at least for now . Fine Tune claims to tailor the .pdf output for your device - i.e. reduce margins for smaller screens, optimize characters, etc. You have to request it, and then they do it, and notify you when it's ready. (Supposedly the original file is also retained.)

I've asked for a couple of my books to be optimized for different devices and will be interested to see if it makes any noticeable difference.
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Old 11-28-2011, 02:26 PM   #94
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Originally Posted by WaltC View Post
Ana,
Thanks for sharing your experiences. I really like the idea of converting some of my older/favorite titles.

I hope you don't mind some additional questions?

You're using "ABBYY FineReader 11 Professional Edition"? Does it work on an entire image-only PDF file that you got from 1dollarscan, or did you need to break it up some into smaller chunks? After that, you manually proof it? How long does that typically take? And then you convert it to ebook format?
Ah, man, sorry I was away so long. I'll answer this here, and maybe ping you in PM in case you don't see this.

Yes, I'm using the ABBYY FineReader 11 Professional. Picked it up on sale awhile back.

My first experience with it left me VERY disappointed because I was using my own scans and the proof-reading and correcting took hours. Literally, 1 book = 6 hours. And even that wasn't perfect and it was a big hassle.

But these 1DollarScans are so clean that ABBYY makes almost no mistakes. I've run through 1 book = 1 hour about 5 times now, and it's been so easy. The only thing you have to watch for is with older books that come with a picture as the first letter in the chapter -- those sometimes "move" in the ABBYY conversion, so you have to move them back. Easy-peasy.

Once ABBYY has processed the book, I save it as an HTML page, and then load that HTML file into Sigil and Save As... Epub. There's probably a faster way, but I like glancing over everything in Sigil before I load into Calibre. It's been 1 book, 1 hour for:

Margaret Mahy's "The Door in the Air and Other Stories". (Picture heavy.)
Mark Twain's "Letters from the Earth" collection that I had.
Several sundry Deathlands books.

The Mark Twain one took a tiny bit longer because it had some special fonts in it that ABBYY preserved but which I didn't want. Weeding them out in Sigil was easy, though.

ABBYY cost me, hmm, about $300, I think?
And a book cutting costs me about $3 a book.
And with packing, shipping, and conversion time, I'm averaging 1.5 hours a book. Less on the "modern" paperbacks with no pictures.

I hope that helps. I can talk about this all day.

Last edited by anamardoll; 11-28-2011 at 02:29 PM.
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Old 11-28-2011, 05:26 PM   #95
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...
I hope that helps. I can talk about this all day.
Ana,
Thanks! I have two 900 page books that I've been wanting to try with the 1dollarscan site & I wasn't sure how big a job I was getting myself into. Believe me that helps more than you can imagine-- you answered all the questions I had and quite a few that I hadn't yet tripped over. The timing was perfect too, since I just yesterday ordered ABBYY FineReader 11 Professional. It's helpful to learn about the steps you go through and I'm very relieved to hear of your 1 hour/book results. (I'm thinking it might be a little more than that for a 900 page book though! )

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Old 11-28-2011, 05:50 PM   #96
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Ana,
Thanks! I have two 900 page books that I've been wanting to try with the 1dollarscan site & I wasn't sure how big a job I was getting myself into. Believe me that helps more than you can imagine-- you answered all the questions I had and quite a few that I hadn't yet tripped over. The timing was perfect too, since I just yesterday ordered ABBYY FineReader 11 Professional. It's helpful to learn about the steps you go through and I'm very relieved to hear of your 1 hour/book results. (I'm thinking it might be a little more than that for a 900 page book though! )

WaltC
They've got a "size limit" on their site -- something about X inches thick? -- but if your book is too big, definitely email them and ask what they can do for you -- they've been super nice to me and worked with me when I wanted some hard-cover books cut and scanned.
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Old 11-28-2011, 09:16 PM   #97
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They've got a "size limit" on their site -- something about X inches thick? -- but if your book is too big, definitely email them and ask what they can do for you -- they've been super nice to me and worked with me when I wanted some hard-cover books cut and scanned.
Their FAQ says this about size:
Quote:
- No more than 2.5 inches in thickness.
- No more than 11.7 inches in width.
So I think I'm OK unless there are other limits that I haven't bumped into yet.
I'm glad to hear they can work with you though.
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Old 11-29-2011, 08:00 AM   #98
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I noticed that they do not accept orders from outside the US and Japan as of yet. Bummer for me. Are there any alternatives available?

Also, how many of you believe that they archive your scans and the next time some customer asks for a scan of the same book they will just send them the old scan and resell the paper book?
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Old 11-29-2011, 08:53 AM   #99
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Also, how many of you believe that they archive your scans and the next time some customer asks for a scan of the same book they will just send them the old scan and resell the paper book?
Why waste the storage bandwidth? These PDFs are not small scans. That would add up. It probably takes them a matter of minutes to run a new scan, depending on their equipment. And the majority of the books I'm sending them cost pennies on Amazon. High investment, laughably low return strategy there.

At any rate, it'd be stupid for them to do so. My scans have (in some cases) notes in the margins and (in all cases) stickers in various places with my name (so that lent books would always come back home).
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Old 11-29-2011, 12:44 PM   #100
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True, if there are notes etc then it wouldn't work. I am thinking more in terms of a large book that costs $7 to scan, if you could pick up that from a database, that would in relative terms be a substantial gain. Not that I would have any problem with it. As long as i get a good scan, but wish they would offer it in a format that is easy to get into a reader-
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Old 11-29-2011, 12:49 PM   #101
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Well, you asked whether we think they do that.

My answer is that, no, I do not think they do because I rather suspect that would be treading a legal line.

My answer is that, no, I do not think they do because they specifically say they do not.

My answer is that, no, I do not think they do because the potential ROI would be very low and the risk is very great.

My answer is that, no, I do not think they do because it would be very easy to be caught (dude, where's my notes?) and very hard to prevent being caught (having to proofread every page for notes rather than just scan the dang thing).

My answer is that, no, I do not think they do because the effort to store and cross-reference all titles that come in for perpetuity would be immense, and you'd also have to check cover, edition, footnote content, and ISBN on the back cover.

My answer is that, no, I do not think they do because of all the books they receive, probably no more than 5% are duplicates. People scan different things, and there are a lot of books out there.

So, no, I don't think they do.
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Old 11-29-2011, 05:10 PM   #102
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My answer is that, no, I do not think they do because they specifically say they do not.

Ha, I didn't see that. They even include ISBN:s? Didn't know that either. That pretty much settles it.
I just imagined that part of the business plan was to "scan once, sell loads", but I envisioned Harry Potter and all the other stuff that isn't on e-books yet.
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Old 11-30-2011, 04:05 PM   #103
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Sadly, in the second batch, there appears to be no single zipped file with all of the scans. Instead the new web interface appears to make me download each of my 27 books individually - still with cryptic names since I'm not willing to double the cost of the scans just to avoid having to change it myself! This is sort of a pain in the neck, especially since the downloads are a couple of hundred MB each, so they take some time. And, I can't imagine if I had sent even more books, although it's still less effort than scanning myself.

I have e-mailed them to ask if there is a way to get a single zipped file for the whole order, and will update here if/when I get a reply. I also am wondering if I am missing something obvious - if anyone here knows how to get a single zipped file from their new web interface, PLEASE post the info!
I finally heard back from the 1dollarscan customer service folks, and after a couple of rounds back-and-forth, they e-mailed me an Adobe AIR link which let me download and install a "1dollarscan downloader", which, thank heaven, has a "download all" button. I had already downloaded all of my 27 files from this order one-at-a-time before getting the downloader, but at least for the future...

The link is :

http://system.1dollarscan.com/downlo...ader0.1.13.air

Please use all the care you would normally use with an "outside" link. This worked fine for me, but use your own caution.


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There is also a possibly interesting option called "Fine Tune" now offered for free - at least for now . Fine Tune claims to tailor the .pdf output for your device - i.e. reduce margins for smaller screens, optimize characters, etc. You have to request it, and then they do it, and notify you when it's ready. (Supposedly the original file is also retained.)

I've asked for a couple of my books to be optimized for different devices and will be interested to see if it makes any noticeable difference.
My test "Fine Tune" was done and ready for download overnight. It came as a zipped file, which has a whole bunch of .jpg files, each of which has a set of pages from the book. I assume that if I were to put them all together I would have my total book. I opened a couple of the .jpg files and sure enough, the margins were reduced, but it was hard for me to see what else might have been done with (or to) them. I'm not sure how much use these will be to me - I'm probably not going to bother getting the rest of mine done.

Last edited by sufue; 11-30-2011 at 04:07 PM.
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Old 12-04-2011, 02:07 AM   #104
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Just a quick question for anyone who has used them, when counting pages, does a single double sided sheet count as two pages or one page? It's certainly two images, so I imagine it counts as two pages, but thought I'd better check.
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Old 12-07-2011, 08:31 PM   #105
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FYI, since we've been talking about Abbyy FineReader Professional 11-- it's currently on sale at Abbyy (until 12/14/11) for a nice price:
ABBYY FineReader 11 Professional Edition : 118.99
Upgrade : 69.99
(Thanks go to "Rime's" posting here.)
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