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Category Archives: documentation

Pay per view obituaries… what???

I’ve been uploading images of graves from my local veterans cemetery on FindAGrave.com and trying to add obituaries. The headstone isn’t the only thing that matters; celebrating the life of the person is equally, if not more, important. Unfortunately, many of the obituaries have been “archived” and when you click them, most direct you to a new search for the newspaper or to a site where you have to pay to view the obituary. I am miffed and mystified by this. Should people have to pay to view an obituary? Where does this leave genealogists? Should genealogists for groups that create listings of obituaries that people can search for free?  I’m thinking I may do just that.

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An awesome scanning device…

Here is a review I created for Amazon about the VuPoint portable scanner – I love this thing. You can also view my Amazon Reviewer page to read the review directly from Amazon’s web page

Below is the text of my review:

I am in the midst of tracing my family tree and was looking for something like this that I could pass over a delicate document without worries of having to try to feed it through a regular portable scanning device. Plus, there are so many things that you just can’t feed through or lay flat on a scanner. This tool is perfect for the day when I can go to a historical archive and need to scan a document.

That said, this scanner did not come with very good directions – in fact it came with hardly any directions at all. It came furnished with batteries (but not the microSD card – you’ll need to supply your own). I thought the batteries were dead because when I clicked the power button nothing happened. It took a few minutes for me to figure out that you have to hold the power button down for 3-5 seconds to turn it on and to turn it off. You’ll also need a paperclip to put in this teeny tiny hole near the microSD card slot so you can format the card the first time you use it.

After I figured out how the scanner worked I scanned two items (I posted both in the pictures section – an image of Time magazine that came out really well on the first try, and a scan of the directions that came with this scanner – printed matter doesn’t seem to scan as easily as pictures do). They were automatically saved in .jpeg format, which is great because you can edit what you scan later. For example, in the genealogy field, you may scan more of a page than you need – many archived documents have references to more than one family that you can edit off the document, saving only the portion you want to keep.

On the whole, I am really pleased with this scanner. It has little rollers on it that roll smoothly over the surface you’re scanning. It was easy to upload the images I scanned onto my computer using the USB cord provided. It came with a pouch to store it in and a fine cloth to clean it with. The lack of directions would be my only complaint. I was able to figure things out, but it might be a little harder for someone who is not as comfortable with this type of technology to set up on their own. So if you aren’t very tech savvy, still buy this gadget, but have a tech savvy friend help you set it up.

 
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Posted by on August 8, 2010 in documentation, tools

 

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