A full-function scanner that fits in your hand transfixes Kickstarter

Its creators claim that PocketScan, which make editable docs and spreadsheets and can handle language translation, is the world's smallest wireless scanner.

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PocketScan can retrieve images from small or large surfaces. Video screenshot by Michael Franco/CNET

If things keep going the way they are, soon you'll be able to carry an entire office around in your pocket.

Recently we told you about a palm-sized printer that crawls around on top of the paper while spraying out its ink. Then there was the pocket-sized pen that acted like a virtual Photoshop studio by drawing in any color on Earth. Now, there's a scanner that can fit in your hand and instantly transfer images and text from the real world to the screen on your smartphone, table or computer. It's called PocketScan and the makers launched a Kickstarter campaign on Monday to raise money for its manufacture.

Created by Switzerland-based Dacuda, the PocketScan measures about 2 inches tall, 3.75 inches long, and 1 inch wide. It connects to your devices via Bluetooth and uses this connection to let you instantly see what you're scanning on the screen. Just move the scanner back and forth across an image or page like you're erasing a blackboard and your swipes appear in real time as a scanned image or document. Scan a table and it's converted into an Excel spreadsheet. Text becomes a Word document. As a video for the device touts, "It's just like painting."

In addition to capturing text and images, which can be saved on your device or to Evernote, the pint-sized scanner can also act as a translator. Just drag it across a line of foreign text you don't understand, and voila (that's French for "technology is awesome") you suddenly have something you can understand, instead of unintelligible scribbles. PocketScan recognizes 130 different languages.

PocketScan grabs images and text at a resolution greater than 400 dpi and has its own lamp for illuminating the page so it works even in low light. Its creators claim the battery will last for over 400 scans.

Dacuda was hoping to raise $50,000 through its Kickstarter campaign. But in just over a day it has already raised over $88,000. All of the $79 "early bird" devices are spoken for. You can still snag one for $99 though, which Dacuda says is $50 less than the planned retail price of $149. Dacuda is planning to ship the PocketScans before December 25.

Tags:
Crave
Sci-Tech
About the author

Freelancer Michael Franco writes about the serious and silly sides of science and technology for Crave and other pixel and paper pubs. He's kept his fingers on the keyboard while owning a B&B in Amish country, managing an eco-resort in the Caribbean, sweating in Singapore, and rehydrating (with beer, of course) in Prague. E-mail Michael.

 

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