Digitisation preserved essential documents of the past

Today we want to take a look at another example where digitisation preserved historical documents. Similar to analogue photos and films, older documents like newspapers and books will fade away over time. Therefore it is essential to transfer them to a digital medium to preserve them for the future.Digitisation preserved essential documents of the past

In this instance archives from a historic Welsh ironworks were digitised. Some people compare the importance of these archives to the Domesday Book and the Winston Churchill’s wartime papers. The archives were essential for the rapid development of Britain’s expansion throughout the industrial revolution. Thanks to funding it was now possible to save them from the ravages of time.

To be precise, the documents originated from the Neath Abbey Ironworks which were built in 1792. The archives held a huge collection of drawings and blueprints related to early steam machines and mine engines as well as locomotives.Digitisation preserved essential documents of the past Digitisation preserved essential documents of the pastA total of 16,600 British pounds were provided by the Welsh Government and the National Manuscripts Conservation trust (NMCT). This enabled the West Glamorgan Archive Service to start with the essential conservation of the manuscripts which includes their digitisation and the publication on the internet. Approximately 8,000 drawings could be saved to share this part of the history of Great Britain with future generations.

This is just one example of the importance of digitisation. To learn more about digitisation and to preserve your own family heirlooms including analogue photos, negatives and film, visit www.scancorner.co.uk.

ScanCorner: Digitise analogue video and photo formats

Analogue photo formats do not last forever. UV radiation, humidity and mold can damage valuable personal treasures like a photo. In order to protect such memories against long-term natural decay, it is important to restore and digitalise those analogue old formats. ScanCorner helps you with preserving all of life’s special moments in digital form. We digitise negatives, slides, old photographs, VHS tapes and Super 8 mm films. We serve Switzerland, United Kingdom, Germany, the Netherlands, Spain, Australia and India.

Place an order online

It all starts with the customer placing an order online giving the order details and shipping address. Once the order is placed online, a confirmation email is generated which has to be printed out and sent along with the order to us. Once we receive it, we weigh the order and make the estimate of the order size.  And don’t forget to quote your voucher code to receive your special discount.

Manual Scanning and Restoration

Our professionals clean and scan all the images manually on high-end scanners. They check for scratches and colour correction, edit and enhance them by special procedure, providing you with the best quality. The video digitisation involves optimization of image and sound quality, brightness and colour correction and digital noise reduction.

Personalised online gallery and DVD

After the restoration process, a link to your personal online gallery is sent to you, with low resolution photos of the processed negatives, slides and photo prints, for you to review.  For videos, a short 3 minute preview is uploaded to the online gallery, again with link being sent to you. If there are any concerns with the quality of the digitisation, please let us know and ScanCorner implements the correction requests.  You are then provided with your personalised DVD along with all the originals which are shipped back to you. This personalised DVD is easy to preserve, access and share.

Finally a download link to the digitised photo or video formats is available on request.

Memories last for a lifetime?

On our website and on our flyers we claim that we save your memories for a lifetime. We recommend and advice you to digitise your old slides or photos to save them before they get stained and your memories get lost forever. Some of you take the chance of our offer to get them scanned to DVD and save them forever.

Onseveral trade fairs you ask us many times the same question, not only there but our customer support gets many queries with the same topic, too: What is the durability of the provided DVDs and how reliable are these DVD as storage for my memories?

Unfortunately we can’t provide you with an exact and guaranteed answer about that topic with that blog post. We have to rely and trust the details of the producer, too. Some of them claim a life span of almost 100 years for their DVD’s, others – independent researches – mention a lifespan between five to ten years. We think that a life span of 10 years is more realistic, though every one of us has many music CD’s in the shelves which are older than 10 years.

The next question of you might be, if it is sufficient to renew the own DVDs which contain the valuable memories after a specific period?

We recommend you to save your memories from the beginning on a different device, either on a cloud or on your PC to avoid any reading errors or other troubles with your DVD. Nowadays there are many cheap external hard discs available which are useful to save your important data. In addition we recommend you to renew your DVD every two years to have another copy of your important files.

If you are done with these steps to save your valuable data, you can enjoy your images or movies on your PC or tablet and you don’t have to worry about losing your memories for a lifetime.

If you need any further assistance about the right storage device or if you have any further questions, please do not hesitate to contact our customer support.

About ScanCorner

ScanCorner offers one of the best value digitisation services in UK. Every memory is handled by professionals who scan and restore them to bring out the best quality. We also create a personalised online gallery with the digitised images which you can share with your friends and family.

 

Digital Images of the history of Wales are now available on Wikipedia

A group of Elizabethan Ladies
A group of Elizabethan Ladies

The National Library of Wales is working closely with Wikimedia UK (WMUK) on this project and has uploaded over 4000 images of the history of Wales. These thousands of images of the medieval history of Wales are now available on Wikipedia as well as on the website of National Library of Wales.

Wikimedia UK is a charity to support volunteers in the United Kingdom who work on projects of Wikimedia such as Wikipedia.

History of the Kings - Morgan and Cunedda
History of the Kings – Morgan and Cunedda

Jasons Evans, the Wikipedian in Residence at the National Library of Wales, explains “One of the Library’s key goals over the next few years is to provide ‘Knowledge for All’. We want to make our collections available freely and widely, and sharing material with sites such as Flickr and Wikicommons gives us an opportunity to reach a far wider audience than we could ever hope to reach via our own website alone.”

The images are those from the 15th and 14th century which illustrates and explains the then life of the great kings and also the Welsh manuscripts.

Jason adds, “Everything we release to Wikipedia is also released on an open license ‘Public Domain’ so these images can be reused by anyone for free. This encourages the development of educational and documentary resources. Already images from these manuscripts have generated staggering viewing stats.”

To view the images of the medieval manuscripts, click here.

550,000 newsreel clips added to the YouTube by the Associated Press

The Associated Press and the British Movietone teamed up to upload more than 100 years of newsreel footage dating from 1895 to present with the world which will serve as a source of education for historians and documentary filmmakers.

The largest upload to YouTube of historical news content of more than 1 million minutes of 550,000 digitised footage includes footage of the major historical events like the earthquake in San Francisco in 1906, Pearl Harbor bombing in 1941, Nelson Mandela’s release, and an amateur video of one of the planes crashing into the Twin Towers on 9/11, celebrity footage, fashion and lifestyle through the ages, sports and entertainment, Science and technology and other historical milestones. All this content will be continually refreshed by AP.

“The AP archive footage, combined with the British Movietone collection, creates an incredible visual journey of the people and events that have shaped our history,” said Alwyn Lindsey, AP’s director of international archive. “At AP we are always astonished at the sheer breadth of footage that we have access to, and the upload to YouTube means that, for the first time, the public can enjoy some of the oldest and most remarkable moments in history.”

Stephen Nuttall, the director of YouTube in Europe, the Middle East and Africa, comments: “Making this content available on YouTube is a wonderful initiative from AP and British Movietone that will breathe new life into their footage and no doubt delight our global community – from students researching history projects to curious culture-vultures and the billions in between. It’s an historical treasure trove that will give YouTube users around the world a moving window into the past and I can’t wait to explore it.”

The content dating from 1895 to 1986 is available on two YouTube channels: AP Archive and British Movietone

16mm film of Amelia Earhart donated to Purdue’s Library

16mm film of Amelia Earhart
16mm film of Amelia Earhart

The 16mm film donated to Purdue University Libraries’ Virginia Kelly Karnes Archives and Special Collections Research Center features Amelia Earhart and her Lockheed Electra plane as they were being photographed by Earhart’s official photographer, Albert Bresnik.  The footage thought to have been taken by Albert’s brother, John Bresnik, captured Earhart speaking and posing at the Union Air Terminal in Burbank, California (today known as the Bob Hope Airport).

Douglas Westfall donated the film to Purdue who is the owner and publisher at The Paragon Agency, which released a book “Amelia Earhart’s Last Photo Shoot”, by Nicole Swinford.

Edward Elliott, the then president of Purdue, recruited Amelia Earhart as a career counsellor and advisor to the Department of Aeronautics. Lockheed Electra that became known as Earhart’s flying laboratory was purchased for $80,000 from the fund for Aeronautical Research in April 1936. Earhart and her navigator Fred Noonan vanished on July 2, 1937, over the Pacific Ocean during their around-the-world flight.

Amelia Earhart, Fred Noonan (AP Photo, File)
Amelia Earhart, Fred Noonan (AP Photo, File)

Tracy Grimm, the Barron Hilton archivist for Flight and Space Exploration in Purdue’s Archives and Special Collections explained that during Earhart’s time, aviators were considered heroes because, due to the dangers of aviation, they were risking their lives.

“Defying gender roles, Amelia Earhart built an unorthodox career in a man’s world, earned the Distinguished Flying Cross, was a compelling force for women’s rights and consistently made the Most Admired and Best Dressed women lists, a complex combination that allowed her to have a real and lasting impact,” wrote Cochrane in the Huffington Post piece.

More info: http://collections.lib.purdue.edu/flight-and-space/

Amelia Earhart waves from the Electra (AP Photo, file)
Amelia Earhart waves from the Electra (AP Photo, file)

Results of the customer survey in April 2015

In April 2015 we asked our customers to provide feedback for the quality of our services. The purpose of the survey was to find out how our client’s rate our website, the quality of our digitised formats and our customer support.

We summarised the most important results of the survey for you:

Usability of the website

In terms of the website appearance and regarding the question how easy the order process at ScanCorner is, 53% of the customers rated the order process at our website as very easy. Furthermore 46% of our clients rated our website as very helpful to get an overview of the offers and prices of our services.

Quality of the digitised formats

For a more detailed analysis the results regarding the photo digitisation and video digitisation were considered separately.

In terms of photo digitisation, 44% of our customers were deeply contended with the quality of their digitised images, negatives and slides. Another 49% are deeply contented with the colour correction of the pictures.

In the field of video digitisation (VHS, VHS-C, S-VHS, Hi8, Video8, Super8, MiniDV) 50% of the respondents are satisfied with the image quality of their digitised videos. Furthermore 53% of our customers are satisfied with the sound quality of the videos.

Packaging

It is very important for us that the precious memories of our customers arrive safely and without any damages at their homes. This is why we package any analogue formats like slides, negatives, photos, APS and other analogue photographic material very carefully. Regarding the question of whether the received videos or photos were sufficient and carefully packed, 70% of respondents answered that they are deeply contented with the packaging.

Customer Care

According to the motto “The consumer is the boss” it is important for us to analyse how our customers evaluate our support. The results help us to find solutions how to communicate with our clients more effectively and optimise our services.

The proportion of respondents, who rate the customer service as very friendly is 62%. For good customer service, it is particularly important to answer customer inquiries in a timely manner. Regarding the questions of whether the customers received a quick response to their requests, 58% answered that they were deeply contented with the quick responses of the customer support. 

All in all, more than half of our customers was satisfied with our service. Overall, 66% of our clients would digitise their precious memories again at ScanCorner and 60% of the respondents would recommend ScanCorner to their friends and acquaintances.

ScanCorner thanks you for participating in the survey. We look forward to more orders from you, your friends and acquaintances.

Regards

Your ScanCorner Team

Grandma finds photo of herself taken 70 years ago in newly released Nanjing Archives

Xu, an 84 year old grandma found a picture of herself as a teenager for the first time among the household registration cards that was made available to the public by the Nanjing Archives in the capital city of east China’s province. The organisation has invited local residents to look through the household registration cards of the Republic of China (1912-1949) on May 26.

The archive has completed the digitisation process of the sorted and categorised household registration cards. The archive has added 1.5 million cards to the fourth list of China’s archival document heritage, to help local residents to trace the life of their family history.

Xu, who came to look for her father’s file, found the household cards of all her family’s members, including herself aged 15, all registered in 1947. On her card, the photo featured a vigorous face and a pair of bright eyes. She was still registered as a high school student under her original family name “Lu.” She was later renamed Xu by her relative, who took care of her later.

“I didn’t expect to see this photo. Actually, my family never had such a photo,” said Xu with smile.

Xu Zhang, 84, shows her teen photo on her family's household registration card [Yangtze Evening Post/Zhang Ke]
Xu Zhang, 84, shows her teen photo on her family’s household registration card [Yangtze Evening Post/Zhang Ke]
The Nanjing Archives stated that these household registration cards are of great value to researchers, as they provide reference to study Nanjing’s historic changes, records of Nanjing’s then population, residents’ occupations, educational backgrounds as well as personal photos and also allowing residents to search for their missing relatives.

All about slides and different types of slides

Slides:

Before digital photography was the norm, prints and slides were generally two methods of processing film. Prints were developed on a sheet of photo paper, while slides were small, transparent pieces of film in a cardboard sandwich.

‘Slide’ commonly refers to a 35 mm photographic positive image comprising chromogenic dyes on a transparent base held inside a plastic or card mount intended for projection onto a screen using a slide projector. Without this mount, the transparent film material would not be able to slide from one image to another inside a carousel or magazine when projected.

Kodak Carousel slide projector
Kodak Carousel slide projector

A 35 mm slide can be magnified by a factor of 100 (from 35 mm to 3,500 mm) and still maintain a crisp and detailed projected image. The size of what you see displayed on the screen is based on the distance from the projector. The further away from the screen, the larger the 35mm Slides will display.

Kodak advertisement in LIFE, 5 October 1959 p.68
Kodak advertisement in LIFE, 5 October 1959 p.68

Kodak’s commercial slogan during the 1950s was: ‘For sparkling pictures big as life … Kodak 35mm colour slides’. During the 35 years of their popularity, from 1960s to the mid-1990s, processing costs for slides to create high-quality projected images were relatively low. They were widely used to capture performances, journeys and the lives of artists and used in contexts ranging from domestic to commercial applications such as advertising, arts, fashion and industry. No other medium could compete with the ability of slides to produce large-scale projected images of comparable excellence. Video technology, for example, could only produce a fraction of the quality. Alternative technologies such as 16 mm film involved elaborate production process. The only other format that was readily available on a similar budget, without the need of professional post-production was 8 mm film, produced for the home movie market. Both 16 mm and 8 mm film are moving image media and hence produce a very different quality of image.

Many art historians still refer to slide-based artworks as slide-tape. This term dates from the 1970s when magnetic audio-tapes in cassette format were used to store a tone that cued slide changes alongside the audio track or spoken word accompanying the images.

Information About the different slides in your Slide Collection

The image advertisements many movie theaters show before the movies are usually, projected 35mm slides. Below, you will find some of the different types of slides:

135 Slide (35mm Slide)126 “Instamatic” Slide

35mmSlide

127 Super Slide

127-slide

126 Slide

126-slide

110 Slide

110-slide

old “3D” or “Stereo” slides

3dslide-cardboard

Medium Format, 120  slide

medium-formatLarge Format Slide Transparency

large-format

Airequipt slides

slide_types_10_metal

Glass Slides

slide_types_09b_glass

150 years old Mark Twain stories uncovered by the scholars

Twain’s articles, about 150 years old, written when the author was a young newsman in San Francisco,have been tracked down by the Scholars at the University of California, Berkeley.

Author Mark Twain(via AP)
Author Mark Twain(via AP)

Twain’s job was to write a 2,000-word story or letter every day for publication in the Territorial Enterprise newspaper in Virginia City, Nevada, six days a week for a salary of $100 a month. He wrote about everything from San Francisco police to mining accidents. The scholars picked through archives of other western U.S. newspapers for copies. They have found about 110 columns written in 1865 and 1866.

“This is new stuff, even for Mark Twain fans,” Hirst told the Chronicle. Bob Hirst is editor of the UC Berkeley’s Mark Twain project and says the articles were found when looking through western newspaper archives.

In one letter, Twain suggested tough punishment for corrupt police officers in San Francisco, saying they were less useful than “wax figurines,” as reported by the Chronicle.

Hirst said that the articles were written at a time of when Twain was trying to decide in which direction to take his career. “It’s really a crisis time for him,” Hirst said. “He’s going to be 30 on 30 November 1865, and for someone not to have chosen a career by that time in this period was quite unusual.” He was in debt and drinking heavily, and even wrote to his brother that he was committing suicide, saying: “If I do not get out of debt in three months – pistols or poison for one – exit me.”

The articles are the perfect example of Twain’s matchless style.

Bob Hirst, the general editor of the Mark Twain Project, with a book of 1866 Sacramento Union newspapers at the Bancroft Library at the University of California at Berkeley. (Jeff Chiu/AP)
Bob Hirst, the general editor of the Mark Twain Project, with a book of 1866 Sacramento Union newspapers at the Bancroft Library at the University of California at Berkeley. (Jeff Chiu/AP)