Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Using a Flip-Pal?

Every genealogist loves gadgets that help them in pursuit of their ancestors. Flip-Pal is not a gadget but a bonafide tool that is really worth the $149 price. Shirley Penna-Oakes writes:  "I had such a hard time getting family to "hand over" their photo album, and when I saw the Flip-Pal, thought this might be just what I needed.  Showed up at my Uncle Roy's house yesterday, and got a copy of the "only" photo of my grandfather...well worth the price of the machine." Can't beat testimony like that. 
Flip-Pal is about 8 1/2 x 11 inches and so is totally portable. And that's the idea. You can take it anywhere and you have a great little hard-working scanner. You scan the image onto a flash drive (included) and then upload the images to your computer (software included). You can use it to make multiple scans of a large image too and the software to stitch the images all together is also included. Such a deal.

Order yourself an early Christmas present from our old friend Leland Meitzler through his website,  .  And then don't forget to take it with you when you summer-vacation-visit your "Uncle Roy."


Miriam said...

One very important point to keep in mind: you CANNOT save images scanned by a Flip-Pal as .tif files; only .jpg files. That means the images you scan with a Flip-Pal CAN deteriorate over time, with repeated use.

Flip-Pal is GREAT for taking on a trip when you might be visiting relatives and would like to scan old photos of common ancestors on a once-in-a-lifetime chance of scanning them. However, if you are wishing to invest in a scanner for your own use, to scan old family photos in your possession, you should look for one that can scan images as .tif files with a resolution of at least 300 dots per inch (dpi), preferably 600 dpi.

Patrick said...

The Flip-Pal mobile scanner saves scanned files as jpg files, however these can easily be converted to .tif files by using any number of photo editing programs (Photoshop Elements for example, or if you are a Mac user, the free and included "Preview" program will also easily convert images to tiff).

Your files are then converted to .tif for repeated use while you still retain the original scanned images. The Flip-Pal mobile scanner also scans at 600 dpi as well as 300 dpi. FYI: I am the Social Media Specialist for Flip-Pal mobile scanner.

Miriam said...

Yes, any .jpg file can be converted to a .tif file. The problem remains that many people are uneducated about the types of image files and will not know to make the conversion, or why that is important. My point isn't that Flip-Pal is a "bad" tool; on the contrary, it is wonderfully handy for genealogists and family archivists. Like any technology, it has its limitations, and it's important that people realize that and work around them. As family curators, our responsibility is to ensure that all artifacts, including digital images, will withstand the ravages of time and any limitations of storage and archiving.