Friday, May 04, 2007

Book "scanners", conferences, and a rant

I've received two e-mails in the last week from people interested in the Atiz BookdriveDIY and wondering what I know about it. The answer is "very little." I've not seen one live nor have a spoken with anyone who has. However, I know that the Atiz Bookdrive DIY is a machine that people are becoming more interested in, so hopefully more public information (reviews, comments) will soon be available.

Book scanners (actually Atiz, Kirtas, etc. don't scan they digitally photograph) are of more interest to organizations these days, especially since lower cost machines are becoming available. Sadly, when manufacturers exhibit at conferences, they generally do not bring expensive machines with them, yet this is a prime opportunity to demonstrate to a curious audience the technology that they have. I can be costly to bring a machine...and it might get damaged...and... But imagine demoing your product in front of 2,600 people (CIL) or 5,000+ (SLA)? Imagine the buzz. Yes, you would be demoing in front of organizations who can afford your product (or can find the money by partnering with another institution or obtaining a grant). Better yet...these are people who are asked for recommendations from their colleagues (librarians, business associates, etc.).

For those that will be at the SLA conference in June, I checked the list of exhibitors to see who will be there that manufacture/sell digitization equipment or provide digitization services. Here is a list of those that I found on the SLA web site, but there may be more:[1]

[1] They are not categorized consistently and I couldn't find Kirtas in any category, although they are listed as an exhibitor.

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