15 January 2014:

Scanner makes it a happy New Year!

Is there any better way to begin the New Year for a Curator than the arrival of their brand new book scanner? And it’s not just any scanner but a Zeutschel OS 15000 with Omniscan software!

Now that may sound like a bunch of jargon and it is but in the world of scanning and digitisation it’s very exciting. It means that the Museum can now press ahead with http://apotekudenrecept.com/ digitising large portions of its archive, library and photographic collection.

One project we’re very excited about is the digitisation of the Corps journal, the Globe & Laurel. This publication is invaluable because in any one issue it describes the current Royal Marines activities at that time. This ranges from operations, exercises, sporting events, social events, obituaries, and even historical pieces. It is therefore a very rich source for researchers and family historians alike, but can unfortunately go over looked.

Through its digitisation we hope to increase awareness of this publication as well as increase access to it. Therefore should anyone be interested in the 1895 issue whether they be in Scotland, France, South Africa or even the Antarctic (you never know Royal Marines have been there too) we will be able to provide it!

Other major parts of our collections we will now be able to start making available is our diary and photo album collections. Why do we require a book scanner for these and not just any ordinary scanner you ask? Well there is the problem trying to get a clear picture of each page of a diary on a traditional scanner without pressing hard on the binding to get it flat. The Zeutschel scanner however allows us to be able to flatten the pages without damaging the bindings, because it cradles the book from below.

Photo albums can have the same issue, but it can also be very time consuming to capture not just the full page of a photo album but the individuals pictures within it. With the Omniscan software that accompanies the scanner we are able to take one picture and clip out as many individual pictures as we like. It therefore protects our collections while greatly decreasing the time it takes us to make them digitally available.

In other words it’s just the most gosh darn exciting thing one Curator could ever hope for! So keep your eyes posted for further digital developments.