2.24.2010

Going digital every day

My digitizing projects are well underway, and I've really been enjoying this memory-filled experience! I replaced my ancient Canon LiDE 30 scanner with a Canon LiDE 200 (which was actually a Valentine's Day gift from my parents), which isn't an expensive or fancy scanner by any means, but certainly makes my old one seem archaic! It's quite fast, and I love how I can just plop something down on the platen and the software will take care of edge-detection for perfect cropping and straightening (plus it can do up to four images at a time if they will fit on the scanner). My first project was to scan over 100 greeting cards that I had saved from Mom & Dad over the years, and it was so easy that I'm already finished! All that's important to me is the wonderful things my Mom writes inside each card (as well as her cute little doodles), and now I have all of them captured where I can instantly enjoy them, which is much better than burying them in a box that I never open. Seeing all these cards again was pretty emotional for me, and I was overwhelmed by how much my parents love me and how lucky I am to have grown up with such positive reinforcement my whole life! Now I've started working on photo scanning, which is really fun since these images help to "fill out" my iPhoto collection. For example, when I took my parents to Disneyland in 2003, I took lots of digital photos, but Dad shot regular print film. I've had the prints buried in an album (I even forgot I had them), but now they are scanned and included in the appropriate iPhoto event, making those memories more complete!

I've also been importing at least one cassette tape per day, but this takes much more time than scanning. I didn't even realize that I had some great software called CD Spin Doctor (which came with my copy of Toast) that has some great filters to remove tape hiss and add other enhancements. I'm sure I could get more control with better equalizing, but I just want to capture this stuff before these old tapes dry up and wither away! After working on the sound, it's fairly easy to split the tracks and bring them directly into my iTunes library. It's been weird to hear my old songs, poetry, and even childhood playtime with grade school friends in California again, and although most of this stuff is intensely embarrassing, I'm thankful that these recordings exist, since they are still part of what made me the person I am. I have so many more tapes to import, so there's no telling what I will have to endure listening to next!