tenpastmidnight blog

Making hay while the sun shines

I've been working on some more stuff for the Ideas section of my website, mainly about multi-sensory rooms, which is a type of equipment used to help visually impaired children, and increasingly children with multi-disabilities or severe learning difficulties. I have some old notes on this from a few years ago, and some sketches which I could do with scanning. Unfortunately, my Umax scanner did what turns out to be the common thing for its model and self-destructed after it had been out of it's guarantee for a few months. Happily, one of the many Alexs (Alexii?) I know has leant me his Epson scanner.

Now, I'm not in to trying to convince anyone to buy anything computer-wise. Recently, I bought an Apple iBook to replace my home Windows/Linux PC (a box I'd built out of many upgraded bits over the years, the processor of which was a four year old AMD K6-2 400) and my old laptop - an AST 486sx-33 (33 MHz of throbbing power!) But at work we're very much PC based and have an old iMac for testing. But, and there was bound to be a but...

There's a CD with the scanner and a help sheet for the install on Windows, and some notes for installing in Mac classic (i.e. everything before OS X.) I plugged the USB cable in to my iBook, then tried loading some stuff from the CD, but I've never installed the Classic environment on the computer. Before going off and finding the Epson site for some OS X drivers, Alex suggested trying to see if it would scan. I had a look in my Applications directory, found 'Image Capture', started it, and it gets the scanner working. Just like that, I'd plugged the scanner in, and once I'd found the program to use it, it worked straight away. Windows 2000 and XP are great advances over previous versions, but even they can't match that level of plug and play. It was a lovely surprise, and now I can get on with scanning all the stuff I've got stacked up.
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