Wanna scare a book publishing executive? Show him the video of this Book Flipping Scanner from Professor Masatoshi Ishikawa of the University of Tokyo.
The system combines a high resolution 500 frame per second camera with a laser beam and some incredibly clever 3D software which can grab images as a book is literally being flicked through faster than the eye can read. The result is a system which can scan a 200 page book in around a minute.
Sound far-fetched? Check out the video below and then decide. Of course it’s early days yet, so the equipment is very clunky and no doubt expensive, but it’s amazing what these boffins can do with just the power of imagination and some coding genius.
The scanned pages are curved and distorted, but the researchers found a way to fix that. The laser pattern allows the system to obtain a page’s three-dimensional deformation using active stereo methods. So they wrote software that builds a 3-D model of the page and reconstructs it into a regular, flat shape.