> While it may be impractical to preserve the original document (these
> are family records, not national treasures) it should be possible to
> scan them and preserve their information. Once digitised, they can be
> copied ad infinitum with no loss in quality.
A couple issues that may well already know.
First, there is not just the resolution to think about but the spectral
response of the scanner. It is fiendishly difficult to get the right
combination of illumination, color filters, optics and CCD to make most
colors come out right. I wonder if consumer scanners can cope at the
level you seem to be asking for.
Second, it is not theoretically possible to "accurately reproduce
color." Perfectly accurate "color" has a continuous spectrum that would
require a near infinite number of channels to reproduce. All scanning,
printing and color display depend on the human perceptual trick that aliases
many colors together. It is a miraculous stroke of technical luck that most
color perceptions can be aliased to colors produced from small sets of
Imagine if hearing could be similarly tricked using only three pitches:-)
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