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PhotoScan for no-glare, super easy archiving of your old pics!

Okay, this one may not be for school, but it sure is handy and I will use it to death.

I just discovered Google Photo’s new PhotoScan app.  If, like me, you’ve got thousands of family photos in albums in your basement or attic, this may be the perfect holiday activity for the gang.

The free scanner app, available from Google Play or at the App Store, allows you to scan and save print photos using your phone’s camera. And, using computational photography, it addresses the perennial glare issue   502387046-119057-collage

How does it work?

First, you are prompted to take a picture of your photo that creates a reference frame. The app will then prompt you to move the camera around to capture four dots that appear on the screen and take the photo from different angles. (All this is a very quick process.) Behind the scenes, the app aligns the the five photos you’ve taken by mapping out feature points, or areas of high contrast. It automatically detects edges, straightens and crops. You can save photos to your camera roll or easily edit, add filters, organize, create (collages, animations and more) and share in the Google Photos app.


Here’s a collage I created from a couple of newly scanned old pics of the kids and a classic of two-year-old me on my tricycle from a rather bad original.

All the under-the-hood stuff is beautifully covered in this video review and explanation from Nat and Lo.


Joyce Valenza About Joyce Valenza

Joyce is an Assistant Professor of Teaching at Rutgers University School of Information and Communication, a technology writer, speaker, blogger and learner. Follow her on Twitter: @joycevalenza

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