Re: Alternatives to icky polluted snailmail, was Re: fighting Anthrax w/ Dr. Strangelove

From: Dan Clemmensen (
Date: Sun Oct 21 2001 - 08:57:06 MDT

Michael M. Butler wrote:

> Dan Clemmensen wrote:
> I consider the general engineering problems to be underestimated by you.
> Feel free to prove me wrong.

Yeah, I'm mostly a software guy. I've been developing products for 30
years, but they don't have moving parts.. I envision a tele-operated
mail opener connected to the back end of conventional "mail handling
equipment". The mailroom guy would dump the mail into the input hopper
of the mail handling equipment, which would then output one pieces at
a time into the teleoperated opener, where the operator would open the
pieces and scan them. A glove box would suffice, but it's not cool
enough and is not amenable to later automation.

>>You are correct that reading scanned text or Fax on the screen is slower
>>for some people,
> Nearly everyone who speed-reads, AFAICT. Also, with "landscape" format and
> current screen sizes, one can't take in an entire page at a glance.

For those of you who can really benefit for it, print the file to a
high-quality printer and read it that way. today's scanners easily reach
2400 dpi, good printers can reach 1200 dpi. You'll contend with paper, but
gain the rest of the advantages of scanning and storing your correspondence.

>>and you are correct that the problem is the display,
>>not the scanner.
> The problem is the system. 200 dpi is actually below the measured threshold,
> but the knee starts around there. 300 dpi is adequate, as many laser printer
> sales appear to confirm. Paper carries more information than a scanner can
> transmit. The value of that information is not calculable by Shannon methods.

 From this I infer that you don't read stuff that was generated by
computer and then printed? Such a paper copy cannot have more
information than was already in the computer in the first place.

This archive was generated by hypermail 2b30 : Sat May 11 2002 - 17:44:14 MDT