Archive for March, 2012

It was worth every penny. You took excellent care of all my photos and returned them safely!

Friday, March 30th, 2012

To assure we’re doing our job right, we follow up with every customer after their order is complete. If there’s ever any issue, we address it immediately. Most of the time however, we receive rave reports. On behalf of the ScanDigital team, I’d like to say “Thank You” to our amazing customers. We’re truly flattered to know you are happy and honored to have been trusted with your family’s precious memories. Please find a sampling of the testimonials below that we’ve recently received.

If you’d like to hear more from our customers, you are welcome to visit our Testimonial page. If you have any questions or would just like to chat, you can always find us here on Twitter and Facebook, by email at or by phone at 888.333.2808 if you have any questions or just want to chat!

“Everyone [at ScanDigital] has always been helpful. They go out of their way to make sure that I am okay and understand the answers to what I was calling about. The work you do is excellent and I feel so confident about the quality of work! I would highly recommend your company, people and work!” – Donna (Peapack, NJ)

“The job your company did scanning the old slides, cleaning the scratches and dust was amazing. I consider myself an avid photographer with quite an investment in scanning equipment [and] I could not have achieved what you did in the short time it took; I would still be in the scanning phase. Scanned, clean, saved, returned as sent = amazing!” – Kathy (Oroville, CA)

“I am very happy with the quality of the scans. I found using the ScanDigital website to be very simple and user friendly. At first, I was a little worried about sending my photos [away] but I decided to take a chance [and] all worked about perfectly.” – Leslie (Raleigh, NC)

“I [am] very pleased with ScanDigital. I am a repeat customer and would definitely use [their] service again and recommend it to others. Customer service was very prompt and helpful and the quality of the products I received was excellent!” – Janet (Barrington, RI)

“The main reasons I would use [ScanDigital] again is ease of service and the quality of the final image scans! Given how easy it is and the quality of the scans, it’s a great way of archiving physical pictures!” – Shea (Kirkland, WA)

“ScanDigital did a wonderful job! I have peace of mind knowing that the family “treasures” are safe in my computer and on a DVD. It was worth every penny. You took excellent care of all my photos and returned them safely! I am very grateful and would recommend your service to anyone.” – Barbara (Sewickley, PA)

“I loved the job that [ScanDigital did].  Very professional and courteous!” – Pat (Honolulu, HI)

“The final project was spectacular! I was super happy with the [slideshow] and so were my guests!” – Maria (Miami, FL)

“The scans are convenient and high quality. You provide a valuable service in an easy-to-use format!” – Jeffrey (Columbia, SC)

“I was very pleased with my experience with ScanDigital; fast, efficient, and great pictures!” – Melissa (Aberdeen, SD)

“I had a great experience and was very happy with my purchase! I’ve shared the scans with my siblings and encouraged them to gather up any slides they might have and get the digitally preserved before they deteriorate any further!”– Timothy (Washington, D.C.)

“[ScanDigital] kept me informed of what stage the work was at and the pictures sent…were excellent.  I sent some irreplaceable pictures so I was happy to feel you treated them as such!” – Ana (Tyler, TX)

Universities Using Photo Scanning to Preserve and Share Holdings

Thursday, March 29th, 2012

Photo Scanning Makes Saving and Accessing Historic Photos Easier and More Affordable

See the Most Iconic Images from History Online Thanks to Photo Scanning

Many different institutions, including universities and museums, have incredible photographic archives that hold some of the most famous, interesting, and powerful images in popular and scientific history. And slowly, they are “going digital,” using photo scanning to protect and improve their archives. There are many reasons to digitize these archives. The two most common reasons for digital preservation are to preserve the images in pristine quality, protecting against material deterioration and possible catastrophes, and to make the images readily accessible to a wider audience, demonstrated by the Corbis Corporation and by one of the most recent headlines about the issue, respectively.

A Humboldt State University graduate and lifetime photographer named Peter Palmquist spent most of his life collecting manuscripts, books, and the best photos of Northern California. Through his interest in a range of issues relating to photography and the region, he became something of a self-made expert on photographic history, and his writings covered several related topics. He sold his extensive collection, which included photos of American Indians from the 19th and 20th Century as well as a number of other interesting subjects of scholastic relevance, to Yale University in 2001. HSU is collaborating with Yale on a photo scanning effort to get a large portion of these photos onto HSU’s library website to make them available for students, professors, and researchers.

The photos themselves aren’t in much danger. But by digitizing them and putting them in Humboldt’s online archive, the collaboration is enabling access to the photos for a significantly expanded range of people. In terms of encouraging meaningful research, it’s this kind of effort that will enable major learning institutions to harness the power of the internet to achieve this goal.

The Corbis Corporation represents another take on the same general process. Founded by Bill Gates in 1989 under the name Interactive Home Systems, Corbis has slowly bought up relevant any photo collection it could find, and now holds more than 100 million images and 500,000 video clips. Most are stored in its state-of-the-art film preservation facility, located inside a mountain in Pennsylvania, designed to control temperature and humidity, as well as survive a number of potential disasters. It has a similar storage facility outside of Paris. The result is that the collections should last hundreds of years. Corbis’ business model is based on allow people to go online and buy licensing rights for the images it owns.

Corbis offers millions of photos and video clips online, having been preserved and made available with photo scanning. This is particularly significant because its archive include the Bettman Archive as well as a number of other historic photographic collections from the United States and Europe. Some of the most iconic images in recent history are housed in its storehouse, and their presence online means that, obviously, you don’t have to climb down into Iron Mountain to see the images. With the goal of becoming the biggest online repository of film images, the more Corbis succeeds the more powerful its online repository will become.

Digital film preservation and distribution begins with the simple act of photo scanning. Countless archives, both the small, like Palmquist’s, and Corbis’ gargantuan mountain repository, have taken major steps in this direction, including after physically protecting the photos in vaults and getting them online so they can be accessed, used, and preserved as long as the Internet survives.

Photo Archive Goes Digital

Corbis Film Preservation Facility

Einstein’s Personal Archive Scanned to Digital in Jerusalem

Tuesday, March 27th, 2012

University Shares Einstein’s Documents by Scanning to Digital Archive

80,000 Pieces of Einstein’s Thoughts Being Scanned to Digital

Not many people know that there is a collection of some 80,000 documents in the Albert Einstein archives at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. This large repository includes a wide range of Einstein’s personal letters and writings on a number of social issues including nuclear disarmament and his love life. And slowly but surely, the University is getting the entire archive scanned to digital so that it can be shared with the world. The online digital archive launched on March 19, though only half the collection is currently available.

Among the many documents is one of the few that shows the equation E = MC2 in Einstein’s own hand. Up until the archive’s launch, the only way to see these documents was the visit the University and take them out of locked storage, something they didn’t allow just anyone to do. Now, however, scholars and the individually curious all over the world will have the ability to access these remarkable archives that offer windows into not just Einstein’s thoughts on a number of problems the world faced, but also his personal relations with his mother, his wife, and his cousin. In other words, a number of new research opportunities will become possible with the cache of documents that the Nobel Prize winning physicists bequeathed to Jerusalem University in his will.

It’s interesting to think about the implications of this kind of decision for a variety of other historical archives that Universities and museums posses. The dramatic difference between only letting a select few experts access ancient and incredible documents like the Dead Sea Scrolls or the United States Declaration of Independence and putting these documents on the Internet so anyone can see, read, and analyze them is profound. Parallel situations where scientists have posed problems to the Web at large and asked the digital “hive mind” to attack them have yielded incredible results in things as complex as disease treatment and gene modeling.

In order to make these “intellectual treasures as accessible as possible, as the documents are scanned to digital the University will be publishing companion translations for each of them, as most are written in Einstein’s native German. Both Princeton University and the California Institute of Technology have contributed to efforts to develop these translations along with annotated notes.And enthusiasts are quick to point out that there are a number of difference disciplines besides basic science and physics that can benefit from the archives, including Jewish historians and science history. In fact, one of the most interesting pieces that will eventually be scanned deals with Einstein’s efforts to begin a “secret council” designed specifically to achieve peace in the Middle East, in which he proposed a group of four Jews and four Arabs that would attempt to negotiate a settlement of the centuries-old conflict.

This project is just one more example of how organizations that get their physical archives of unique historical texts scanned to digital can simultaneously increase access to and academic use of the texts, protect them from physical damage by researchers, and create a digital repository in case the documents themselves.

Scientist, Lover, Dreamer: Einstein Private Manuscripts Online

How to Photograph Running Events

Thursday, March 22nd, 2012

How to Capture Running Shots Like an LA Marathon Photographer

Know Your Goals and You’ll Make Better Choices

The 2012 Los Angeles Marathon in the books, and along with the same amazing finishes that always impress viewers, the race produced thousands of incredible photos. The shots of Simon Njoroge breaking the tape with a mingled look of exhaustion and simple pride in his accomplishment are an example of the kinds of stunning photographs that running allows. They’re the kinds of photos that your mom would cut from the front page of the paper to scan to digital and email you. And just as with any athletic photography, there are definite styles, strategies, and techniques that the best photographers use to capture running events.

The first thing you need to do is make it clear why you want to shoot a running event. Because road races cover so much ground and have both fast individuals and vast hordes of runners grinding it out, these athletic events require some concerted planning. You can’t just show up with your favorite camera and lens and idly hope to steal a few great shots the way you could walking around a neighborhood. Most people photograph races either promotionally for the event organizers or professionally to be able to sell the photos to competitors and their families afterword. Some also go to capture that one group of friends or family members, which may be the most difficult of all. You might have other reasons but the types of shots you want to get will probably fall into one of the categories that these purposes suggest.

Promo purposes call for both wide angle group shots and close ups. However, many of the close-ups that are most desirable feature competitors before the race, with eager excitement on their faces and friends supporting, or after the race looking like they ran hard and are having a great time celebrating. Except for the really strong runners, most action shots show a person with a pained expression. Unless the race is billed as gritting through something tough, those shots won’t be as useful. The group shots follow basic conventions – they’re relatively easy as long as you get the focus right and expand the depth of field. Where you choose to shoot from tends to be more important, because you need to get the right background and composition of people. Similarly, capturing people before or after a race is not too difficult.

On the other hand, if you’re looking to get shots of individual runners, you do need to prepare quite a bit. Faster film speed (even with digital cameras), faster shutter speed, and a longer lens are all important. You want to shoot people either when they look strong, which means at the start of the race or in the last minute of the race when they’re kicking hard to the finish; or you want to catch people in moments of real emotion, like when two friends running together are supporting each other or when a person who was considering giving up gets a second wind. Both of these goals require finding the right position on the race course, both in terms of the action at that part of the race and as far as being able to see runners approach so you can size up the subject, and paying attention to faces and body language so you can capture the real moment when they’re at the right range. Even though runners don’t move that fast, they won’t stop. So the right spot is the only way to give yourself the opportunity to take shots that you can digitize to monitors after the race and that competitors may actually want to buy.

So the most important steps to taking good running photos are planning based on your goals and picking the right location. Some people worry a lot about using a flash to fill or carrying several cameras around. This is more important if you’re going to be shooting people before or after the race. But as opposed to other sports, where there are specific, dynamic moments that need capturing, with running events its more about patience and intuition than about having the fastest camera and getting lucky with the perfect shot.

It’s only through thinking about these steps and following through with your decisions that you’ll get those perfect running photos worthy of being scanned to digital, that tug the heart strings and excite viewers.

The scanned pictures looked amazing! Comparing them to the originals showed how the color correction and tweaking you guys do really does help. Great job and worth every penny!

Tuesday, March 20th, 2012

We follow up with every customer because we care. We truly want to hear about as many customer experiences as possible to assure we’re doing our job right. If there’s ever any issue, we address it immediately. Most of the time however, we hear from customers overjoyed to have their memories preserved and thankful the process was so easy. On behalf of the ScanDigital team, I’d like to say “Thank You” to our amazing customers. We’re truly flattered to know you are happy and honored to have been trusted with your family’s precious memories.

If you’d like to hear more from our customers, you are welcome to visit our Testimonial page. If you have any questions or would just like to chat, you can always find us here on Twitter and Facebook, by email at or by phone at 888.333.2808. Hope to hear from you soon!

The service and speed of your company is…phenomenal. I was blown away by the contact regarding my order. It was very personalized to my project and so I was extremely pleased 100%! – Stephanie (Petaluma, CA)

I certainly will use Scan Digital again! I have been very satisfied with the service you offer and feel confident that my pictures are safe while in transit! – Mary Jane (Washington, IL)

The scanned pictures looked amazing! Comparing them to the originals showed how the color correction and tweaking you guys do really does help. Great job and worth every penny! – Michael (Santa Cruz, CA)

From the moment my package was scanned at my local post office until it arrived at ScanDigital (and back), I was able to view every step of its journey on my account page, which gave me peace of mind. The scanned photos came back in higher resolution than the originals, and they look great! – Holly (Gahana, OH)

I was very happy with the professional, organized process for submitting my slides to be digitized; also great communication throughout the process and excellent quality [work]! – Monica (Circle Pines, MN)

I appreciated the emails letting me know of the status of my order and when I received the CD and pictures back, I was very impressed with the quality of the restoration of older pictures! – Teri (Chugiak, AK)

You proved great service and sent me back everything properly. Nothing was lost! I am very happy with your work! – Ranjana (Ontario, Canada)

I was very pleased with the scanning of my old photo slides, some 60 years old.  Some looked better than many years ago when they were taken!  I have already recommended ScanDigital to several family members and friends. – Virginia (Cameron, WV)

I’ve tried scanning my own photos and I know how time consuming and how hard it is to keep them dust free so I was really pleased with the scanned images! I will definitely recommend you guys to my friends/family and will most likely be using ScanDigital again! – Cho Man (Hauppauge, NY)