Scanners capture sides of objects—especially Scrabble tiles

Normally when you scan something, you think your scan is going to be totally flat. But the only truly flat part of your scan is right down the center of your scanner.

Anything sitting on the left part of your scanner will show the object’s right side. Vice versa for anything sitting on the right part of your scanner.

I’m scanning Scrabble tiles. You’d think, ok, just spread all the tiles across the entire scanner, and boom, scan them in one easy scan.

Not so easy.

I want only the front of the tile. I don’t want to see the sides of the tiles. Any of the tiles that are on the left and right side of my scanner end up showing the side of the tiles.

Here’s how I found out. I ran a test run with nine Scrabble tiles in the the corners and center of my scanner.

Scrabble tiles spread across face of scanner

The resulting scan looks like this:

Look closely at the tiles on the left.

You can see the edge of the tiles. Same thing with the tiles positioned on the right side of the scanner.

But the tiles in the center of the scanner—you don’t see any of the edges.

Thus, if you don’t want to see the sides of any object on your scanner, put the object right in the middle. Instead of scanning the Scrabble tiles spread over my scanner, I positioned them in a vertical line down the middle.

It takes MUCH longer to scan this way. You have less tiles on your scanner. And the scanning do-hickey has to go all the way from the top of your scan to the very bottom.

Scanner preview of Scrabble tiles, aligned vertically centered.

I managed to fit 10 tiles on my scanner at a time. Thus, with 100 tiles, I had to do ten separate scans.

But maybe you can cheat and put two columns in the middle? Nope. I tried that. You can still see the sides. Just barely.

If I’m going to take the time to scan in tiles on multiple passes, might as well do it right. Keep it to just one column of tiles in the middle of the scanner.

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